korea

Moving to South Korea!

This time last year I posted a picture on my Instagram of my Japanese working holiday visa. This year, I've got a Korean work visa!

moving to SK - deeyandra

Inspiration:

After I returned from my working holiday in Japan, I decided to apply to teaching jobs in South Korea as well as Japan after watching videos by TravelingNat and Daylightful.

Job-hunting:

I applied for about 4 jobs on Dave’s ESL café. One replied within a few hours, two replied after a few months, and one has yet to respond.

Requirements:

Fluent English (education in an English-speaking country) and a University Degree. I would need a TEFL certification and 2 letters of recommendation if I applied to the EPIK program so I applied to hagwons (private afterschool cram schools).

Process:

After my email application, I had a Skype interview with the recruiter and then a phone interview with the head teacher, who wanted to have me on board. Then it was a matter of sending my documents to the recruiter. Gathering my documents together was the most stressful and frustrating thing I’ve ever done in my life and it wasn’t cheap. I sent them off, applied for my visa, bought my plane ticket and packed my bags (coming soon)!

Documents:

Certified and apostilled copy of my University degree and a certified and apostilled original Criminal Record Check. I also needed 5 recent passport photos, the visa application form and a signed copy of the contract.

Money:

Giiiirl, you will need some spare change. What is making all this spending worth it is the fact that my airfare will be refunded and my company will be covering my rent.

For a quick breakdown: £5 for a certified degree copy + £25 for the Criminal Record check + £10 to get them both certified by a solicitor + £60 to get apostille stamps + £10 postage to Legalisation office + £6 for 5 passport photos + £35 express delivery to South Korea + £154 for the E-2 visa + £30+ for travel to the Korean embassy for visa application and visa collection + £450+ plane ticket…Not to mention that I messed up half-way through and thus spent another £50 to re-do some of these steps…

I spent just as much time and effort applying for the JET Program only to be moved to the Reserved List and then cut off without a reply so I was very nervous dropping all of this money. It wasn't until I had my visa and flight confirmation that I thought, wow, this is really happening.

My thoughts:

What I'm most excited about: the change of scenery and culture

What I'm least excited about: not fully understanding the language. Though I am learning Korean!

What I'm hoping for: better skin, better style and improved Korean

What I'm nervous about: not making friends and not enjoying my job

Can't wait to: enjoy the nightlife and food

My biggest worry: family issues while I'm away

Super pleased that: I won't have to pay rent and that I'll be back in Asia

My 2019 goals: save a couple thousand pounds, make some zero waste swaps, and pass the JLPT N2 exam


I couldn't find much information online from people who didn't go to teach in South Korea via the EPIK or TaLk programs, so I wanted to be completely honest and transparent with you. I hope this was helpful in some way!

I'll soon have a blog post on what I'm packing to take with me. I'll also be documenting my journey so be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow me on Instagram!

Happy New Year,

deeyandra x