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Japan versus South Korea (culture, travel, parks, etc)


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I visited Japan a few years ago so I am familiar with what a foreign traveler experiences in that country. I knew some key Japanese phrases, figured out that most foreign friendly restaurants had picture menus or plastic food on display and I learned how much English was spoken by the locals.

 

I want to ask those who have been to South Korea, in general, how did the country compare to Japan for foreign travelers? Was it more difficult to find English signs or find people who spoke a little English? Was ordering food about the same? Were trains and buses as efficient and one time as they are in Japan? I'd be interested in any observations, including differences at the parks.

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Korea was VERY different.

 

Nowhere near as polite, effiicient, clean, nice, etc. It reminded me of being back in SoCal! We saw kids spitting, we were linejumped, there was graffiti all over the parks, and more.

 

That being said, they really love westerners and they seemed to speak more English than the Japanese do. We were on a Charter bus so I can't speak too much about public transportation. Traffic in and around Seoul was worse than LA. The rest of the country was fine.

 

No 'displays of food' as you're used to in Japan and very little in English outside of the parks. At the parks you could always find pictures or English descriptions. No McDonalds on every corner, but lots of Dunkin Donuts.

 

Also at the parks they didn't seem to care about opening on time, having rides ready, dispatching in less than 15 minutes, stuff like that.

 

Don't want to discourage anyone, but it's NOTHING like Japan...much more like the US.

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^I agree!

 

Korea is totally different from Japan.

JUST..You'll find easily English signs or people who spoke English. Buses and trains in Seoul are more efficient and cheaper, BUT they're unreliable. They don't appear to run to any timetables.

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