Skip to Content


How I Got Scammed in Bangkok, but Came Out Winning

We have all read stories about getting scammed in foreign countries while on vacation. We’re also given all the precautions to save us from the embarrassment and loss of a scam. Then, we prepare mentally and physically for it. Preparing to spot that ominous, slim, shady character walking towards us with a trench coat on. Some even take karate classes in preparation for it.

Enough horseplay. If we knew how a scam worked, we wouldn’t get scammed.  And the scammers know this so they come at us like an innocent dove.

Have you ever seen the reporter doing a story about pickpockets, and this master pick pocket-er literally tells the reporter what he’s going to steal and then steals it by the end? It’s like that I suppose.

Filming a Documentary with Arirang TV

A couple months ago we were asked to participate in a documentary Arirang TV was making about safety in Korea. It is a topic we’ve been wanting to cover for a long time, so we agreed to be a part of it. We get a lot of safety related questions, and it’s always seemed to a be topic we could cover over the span of 3 or 4 videos. This Arirang TV documentary will focus on safety of students in school, and also cover women’s safety services in Seoul.

3 Female Teachers Talk About Dating, Racism, and Safety in Korea

One thing I’ve learned through blogging and vlogging over the past two years is that there are a lot of questions about life as an expat teaching English in Korea.

They are all different and they comes from all ages, races, and backgrounds. Among the questions about food, qualifications, documentation, and who Korean girls like most are those from female teachers inquiring about dating, racism, and safety.

This is a danger zone topic I learned the hard way through my HIGHLY controversial vlog, DO NOT Teach English in Korea if You Are These Types of People.

Is It Safe to Travel to Korea?

While eating breakfast at my hostel in Barcelona last month, a CNN news brief aired declaring that tensions were high and nuclear war was eminent on the Korean peninsula.  A Korean backpacker that I had met earlier that week looked at me and simultaneously, we rolled our eyes, irked by the excessive urgency and seriousness in the reporters' words.  The others in the room, who hailed from all corners of the globe, looked worried and advised us to prolong our stay in Europe rather than return to a country that was in such a hostile state.

The concerned comments didn't end there.  Messages from my friends in America began flooding my inbox with questions regarding my well being and my parents even offered to purchase for me a plane ticket back to Mississippi.

Open Mike: Brands, Counterfeiting and Piracy

The english waves come inAbout 'Open Mike in Busan'


A week earlier while I was waiting to go on air at the station, a situation was posed which led me to say “But that would be unethical”. I needed to repeat that last word a number of times. We quickly established that the English word ‘ethical’ may sound hilarious to Koreans. I wasn’t entirely convinced that this was merely a phonetic issue, which resolved me to pick a topic related to ethics for this week’s show.

Safety tips for foreigners living in S. Korea

Recently, I have learned of a fellow foreigner here teaching English who became a victim of assault. In a country where safety is a noted luxury (especially comparing to my home country), it inspired me to make a safety tips video. I made a video because well, let’s face it, not many people READ a lot anymore. :(  Here is a link to this video if you want to check it out.

Take care, I hope all your Korean experiences are wonderful!

The Honey Pot

In my mind the angry husband eventually accused his wife of caring more about her plants than she did about him, and this is the reason he chose to start dropping them, one by one, out of the window into the car park ten floors below.

As heavy ceramic pots of the sort favoured for Korean balconies, complete with large exotic plants, surreally dropped down the side of our apartment building, the ageing building janitor was called in to negotiate for the safety of the remaining foliage, even if the marriage at this point was beyond saving.

It’s not always a given that people are going to listen to their elders in this country any more, but thirty minutes later, the man was sheepishly picking up shattered ceramic fragments and traumatised plants amongst the thin layer of earth that now covered part of our apartment block's car park.

Expat Expertise: Streets and the City

Words by Rob Ouwehand of Roboseyo

Last year, my wife and I got a car. While driving in North America can be a pleasure of life, Canada’s open road is nothing like what you’ll find in Korea’s cities. Year by year, Korea lingers at the top of the lists for highest car accident and pedestrian fatality rates in the OECD, and anybody who’s taken a taxi ride knows Korea’s city traffic can get wooly. However, these harrowing roadways can be navigated. From my own time driving, here are some pointers for surviving the streets without sacrificing your sanity.

The most important, possibly life-preserving rule, is simply this: what the cars around you are doing is more important than the lights, lines and signs on the road—by a huge degree. Whether that’s lane-weaving cars in the city or red-light-runners in the country who think nobody’s looking, the road signs are good, but awareness of your surroundings is better.

Ask first
If you plan to drive in the city, ask first, “Do I actually need to drive?” Between traffic, parking scarcity and prices, and Korean cities’ ever-improving public transit systems, often a subway or bus is easier, less stressful, and even faster. If your destination is close to a busy city center, or it’s rush hour, public transit might be a better choice. If your destination is farther from the city center than you are, driving becomes a viable option.

Watch out
Until all the world’s idiot drivers have stickers on their cars, you should drive defensively around the far right lanes. Buses, taxis, delivery bikes and trucks, cart-pulling seniors and a full complement of wet and dry goods vendors either dodge in and out of this lane—or even set up shop. Cars with tinted windows, especially imports, deserve an extra eyeball, too: they drive with a greater sense of entitlement than other drivers, and are most likely to cut you off, or block you from changing lanes. Meanwhile, bikers come out of nowhere and ignore any rule of the road that won’t help them deliver their pizza: use your mirrors a lot to stay aware of all four corners of your car. Taxi and bus drivers might be aggressive, but they’re also usually very experienced, for what it’s worth.

Turn signals
Like business or dating culture, driving also follows different logic in different countries, and what works well in one country might fail completely elsewhere.

Read the rest of this article at

Busan e-FM Week 12: The Safety Experience

About 'Open Mike in Busan'


This week’s subject is safety. Perhaps when people think about this country and its culture, they think about the places, the festivals, the food and things like that, and not necessarily the issue of safety, but safety was one of the first things I thought about in Korea.

Some of it is politics

On my third day in Korea I was walking to... well, I didn’t know where we were going actually – that’s what life is like sometimes as a foreigner living with a Korean family here – and the civil defence sirens went off.

Abandon Ship

The first thing you think about when the screech of the alarm first reaches you, is that 9.30pm on a Sunday evening is not a likely time to be running a drill. The automated spoken warning that it drowned out may have been meaningless to a non-Korean speaker, but there are times when no translation is necessary to understand the words "Fire. Evacuate. Fire. Evacuate."

Becoming Adventure: South Korea Travel Tips

The end of my holiday is coming! Next week I will start working on new videos about China!

South Korea is a great place to travel to! It may not be the first place on your list to go, but you will not regret a trip there. It offers a pretty unique and rewarding experience. It is best to get out and explore Korea. If you are just starting to travel and are looking somewhere you can explore and travel with no plan Korea is a good place to start! It is super safe and the people are really friendly. Also the food is great, I have never had any stomach problems. There are so many great cultural sites to check out. Here are some helpful sites for travel in Korea: Korean Tourism site: More Korea info: Transportation: Trains: Buses: Accommodations:

The Hornet's Nest

Apparently Namhae has killer bees. Or something like that.

Korean Father was out very early in the morning on top of an isolated mountain mowing the grass around his mother's grave, during the last days of the summer's heat. It has to be done otherwise it would become unkempt and that would be disrespectful, and since graveyards in Korea are generally small and don't employ anyone to maintain them, it's a family responsibility. The graves of those with no nearby or surviving relatives can often easily be spotted as isolated patches of chaos in an otherwise ordered scene.

When the Smoke Clears

I really don't like mosquitoes, the dreaded Korean 'mogi'. Recently I related some of my mogi-chasing stories to someone here and she seemed to think it was more amusing than I did. When I got home, I asked my wife, "what's so funny about that?" She told me that Korean people don't usually bother enough about mosquitoes to spend an hour out of bed in the middle of the night chasing one with a newspaper. OK, that's fair enough, I may be a little crazy. But look at it this way - I'm a completer-finisher*. (*I wish - I'm actually a dangerously high scoring 'shaper').

But am I crazy enough to want to run trucks around crowded streets spraying insecticide at everyone? No - so who are the crazy ones now?

Biker Boyz


Normally, I don't really sweat that much, and this may have been the reason why before this summer I've only had around five mosquito bites in Korea. In the last two days, I've been bitten seven times in our apartment, and I have the itchy red spots to prove it.

Having a large apartment can seem like a step up from the 'one-room' place we spent the first fifteen months in, but I discovered it had a downside: the air conditioning unit in the one-room could keep the air cool with only intermittent efforts, but the one in our four-bedroom apartment would need to stay on all the time to have any chance of making a significant difference to the temperature of our office on the other side of the building. The upshot of which is that I'm working in a room which hits 30 degrees and 80% humidity on the bad days, while three computers pump out warm air which has nowhere to go. It's hot, uncomfortable, and apparently it's made me more of a mosquito target.

Not Necessarily the News

The first time I lived in Korea I tried to learn the language and understand the culture I was faced with every day, but I didn't have the time to develop an understanding of some of the wider aspects of society that fills the newspapers every day, and I wasn't expecting to stay. I found this decision made Korea more enjoyable for me, because I didn't have to read about politicians arguing every day, the crimes and wider social problems afflicting the country, or endless celebrity gossip.

The Sandman

When I discovered that finance ministers and central bankers from the G-20 were meeting in Busan I felt like I wanted to go and stand outside the hotel to watch because suddenly, as a financial trader, my world was coming to me - here in the relative backwater that is Korea's second city, and I wondered if I would ever again be in the presence of so much collective inaction. But as events transpired, by the time they reached Busan, all I wanted to do was catch a glimpse of the British Chancellor of the Exchequer and shout “Stop letting President Obama kick sand in our faces, Mr.


There is a civil defence drill here around the 15th of every month. The authorities put out flags a day or two beforehand to remind people. Now that the puppet regime in North Korea is threatening to attack South Korea again - in the past it has threatened to turn it into a sea of fire amongst other things, the drills take on a slightly more ominous feel.

Mad Dogs and Englishmen

After a few minutes, I began to think that the number of car horns sounding outside, far below on the highway, was unusually high. A few minutes after that, I finally decided to get up from my desk and see what all the commotion was about. I expected there had been a breakdown or accident, instead I saw what I believed to be a cat, meandering around the six lanes as though it hadn't a care in the world. Cars were doing emergency stops, weaving around it at the last minute, and stopping dead as the animal chose to remain in front of their halted vehicles. Horns were being sounded, to no avail.

Up Pompeii

A large crowd gathered around a sixty-foot bonfire on a waterlogged beach, tents on the ground nearby, kites in the air, Korea's famous health and safety culture. What could possibly go wrong?

The Fast and the Furious

The owners of the apartment we rent recently told us they were planning to sell it, which meant we either had to buy it, or find somewhere else to live. It caused me to consider the fact that in a little over three years, I've moved home four times - three times of which were between countries - and perhaps under the circumstances I shouldn't feel ashamed to be reluctant to add a fifth relocation to my list.

Road Rage

We were in the Seomyeon district of Busan when the first incident happened. A car accelerated at great speed from a crossing and hurtled down the road briefly before suddenly slamming on the brakes in a move I felt sure would have left two thick black tracks of rubber on the tarmac beneath it. Stationary traffic lay ahead, but it was perhaps the presence of a police car in the next lane which had

Syndicate content

Koreabridge - RSS Feeds
Features @koreabridge     Blogs  @koreablogs
Jobs @koreabridgejobs  Classifieds @kb_classifieds

Koreabridge - Facebook Group

Koreabridge - Googe+ Group