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Moving to South Korea as foreigners

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Joined: 10/03/2012
Moving to South Korea as foreigners
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Hi everyone!

I am Naomi and this is my first time writing in a forum. I have read plenty before , but I didn't find anything related enough to the question I have.

Maybe someone with the same experience can help,o or just anyone for that matter.

Me and my Boyfriend,Koen want to live in Korea. I don't think this should be a problem,as many foreigners do this. But my question is, our names especially our last names are a big hastle for any Koreans to pronounce. I know this because I have loads of Korean friends who live here with us in Belgium.


I would like to know if we want to permanently live there, that we get Korean names somehow? and what about if we decide to have a baby? would that child be named: (ex. Sora Hallemans(my bfs family name) or does she get a korean last name?

Neither of us is of Korean descent . I'm Japanese,Filipina Belgian and my boyfriend is just Belgian.


Really hope someone can anwser my question! :D thanks in advance

Joined: 09/12/2010
Re: Moving to South Korea as foreigners

You can just use a nickname (western or Korean), if you name's too hard to pronounce, the only people who take official Korean names are those who becomes naturalized citizens. If you have a baby here you can choose any name you'd like. Only children born to Korean Citizens are Koreans by birth, unlike the U.S. (not sure how it works in Belgium) which has automatic birthright citizenship.

Joined: 09/15/2009
Re: Moving to South Korea as foreigners

For the majority of westerners here, most Koreans can't pronounce our names correctly and it's no big deal. After a while you end up pronouncing your name in Korean phonetics just to make life easier.

As non Koreans, if you planned to live here permanently, gaining citizenship is not impossible, but relatively rare. Those that do it, are usually married to Koreans.

With regards to having children here, your child would have the passport of your nationality, Belgium. If you wanted to give him a Korean name, you could, but I don't really see the point. I may be wrong here, but if your child wanted a Korean passport later in life he would have to give up his Belgium nationality in order to do so.

I should add as a proviso here than I could be wrong on the above, but am basing my information on what I have been told from both western Korean couples and western only couples who have lived here for a while and have had children.


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