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Living in Asia guide

Find out all you need to know to relocate and live in Asia with the expat guide

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Generalities

General information
  • South Korea is an Asian country which stretches over some 100,210 km². Its capital is Seoul while its largest cities are Busan and Incheon.

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  • India is known to be one of the world's biggest and most densely populated country's, with a very diverse economy that attracts many foreigners.

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  • India offers expats a number of lifestyles, thanks to its sheer diversity of cultures and traditions that vary from region to region.

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  • Thailand is popular with both tourists and expats intending a more long-term stay.

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  • Hong Kong is one of China's two special administrative regions. It is divided into three zones, namely the Southern Island, Kowloon and New Territories.

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Formalities

Visas, passports and entry requirements
  • The regulations to be able to get married in South Korea vary depending on citizenship. Find more information in this article.

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  • Nationals from certain countries can travel to South Korea visa-free, while others will need to apply for a visa. You may also want to get travel insurance

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  • Regardless of their nationality, foreigners are allowed to get married in India, provided they comply with certain requirements.

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  • There are certain restrictions imposed by customs as to what you can bring into India. Certain products have volume limits, while others are prohibited.

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  • If you satisfy several criterion, you will be eligible to marry in Thailand. There are different procedures if one spouse is Thai or if both are foreign.

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Visas

Work visas, work permits, working holiday visas and residence permits
  • If you are seeking professional experience in South Korea, you can apply for a work visa, a business visa or a partnership visa.

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  • There are different short-term visas that allow you to stay in South Korea. Here are some of the visas you can apply for at the South Korean Embassy.

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  • The Working Holiday Visa (WHV) allows you to stay in South Korea for up to one year and get a unique working experience while travelling the country.

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  • To be allowed to work in India, expats must have secured an employment contract and obtained a work visa beforehand.

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  • Whether you are moving to India to work, study, or for business purposes, you are required to apply for a visa on the India Visa Online website.

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Work

Labour market, how to find a job
  • Seoul is a dream destination for international students and professionals. If you, too, want to live and work in Seoul, this article will help you.

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  • Are you looking for a job in Incheon? This South Korean city has a high employment potential and attracts great foreign investments.

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  • South Korea has an open and dynamic labour market that appeals to expats. Employment opportunities exist in various sectors.

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  • It is not difficult to find a job in Ulsan, as the city has many international and multinational companies in need of foreign professionals.

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  • The South Korean city of Gwangju is highly industrialised and has a wealth of opportunities for expats in different fields.

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Accommodation

How to rent a house or an apartment, leases and rental agreements
  • Busan, the second largest city in South Korea, is a popular destination for expats who want to live and work in South Korea. Accommodation is easy to find.

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  • Each year, millions of expatriates from across the globe move to Seoul. Yet, finding accommodation in the South Korean capital city is not an easy task.

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  • Various types of accommodation are available in South Korea. Expats can choose from a studio, an apartment, a villa or an individual house.

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  • Jaipur, Rajasthan has long been a popular tourist destination. Expats will find that accommodation is widely available and affordable there.

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  • Buying a property in India can be a rather complicated task for a foreign national, but you can overcome this with appropriate planning.

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Study

Student visa, University registration
  • South Korea has world famous universities that are open to international students. This article will answer your questions about studying in South Korea.

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  • Each year, India welcomes thousands of worldwide foreign students looking forward to study in one of its several prestigious universities.

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  • There are a number of higher education institutions you can choose to enroll in in Thailand. You can also attend vocational courses, or learn Thai.

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  • Hong Kong is home to several internationally-ranked universities, amongst other well-regarded institutions. Courses are offered in English.

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  • Macau offers international students the chance to learn at one of its universities while enjoying the unique mix of Portuguese and Asian cultures.

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Health care

Public and private health systems
  • South Korea's health system is quite developed. However, you are advised to subscribe to a health and repatriation insurance before travelling.

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  • If you are travelling to India, you should consider health insurance before departing. The healthcare varies in quality in urban and rural areas.

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  • Expats are recommended to get personal health insurance for Thailand. Government hospitals can be quite busy.

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  • Hong Kong has a public healthcare system available to residents and non-permanent residents. Expats may also want to consider private health insurance.

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  • There is one main public hospital and various private hospitals and clinics in Macau. You can find both Western and traditional Chinese medicines.

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Bank

Open and manage a bank account
  • If you move to South Korea, you will need to open a bank account. Find information on the banking procedures in this article.

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  • India hosts several national and regional banks, as well as branches of international banks where expats can open a bank account.

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  • To open a bank account in Thailand, you need to produce your passport, a valid permit or a resident certificate. You are allowed to open a bank account in

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  • If you are working in Hong Kong, opening a local bank account will be essential. Procedures are rather simple, but a deposit will be required.

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  • Macau is a financial centre in the region. As a result, there are a number of financial institutions to choose from when looking for a bank.

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Tax

Tax system, income tax
  • If you live in South Korea, you will have to pay tax. Find information on the country's taxation system in this article.

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  • During your stay in India, whether you are there to work or to set up a business, you are likely to pay different types of taxes.

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  • Every working person in Thailand has to pay income tax. Different taxation rates apply according to income thresholds.

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  • Local taxes in Hong Kong apply both to individuals and companies. In fact, different types of taxes are deducted from revenue.

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  • Macau has a relaxed tax system that has helped it gain a reputation as an offshore hub. Both personal and business tax levels are quite low.

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Transports

Train, bus, plane, car rental
  • The transport in South Korea makes it easy to get around the country for work and leisure.

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  • There are a a wide range of transport options available in India. Expats can choose the most convenient option based on the length of journey and cost.

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  • New Delhi, the Indian capital city, has a well developed transport network consisting of trains, buses, taxis, as well as the famous rickshaw.

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  • There are different ways to travel in Thailand. You can choose between the plane, bus, train, or taxi. Traffic gets quite bad during rush hour in Bangkok.

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  • You do not really need a car to move around Hong Kong thanks to a developed public transport network including buses, trams, trains, ferries, etc..

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Driver's licence

Driving requirements
  • To drive in South Korea, you need an international driver's licence. If you're staying for more than a year, you can also exchange your driver's licence.

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  • Expats can drive in India for short periods with an International Driver's Licence. For longer periods, you will need to apply for an Indian licence.

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  • If you are staying in Thailand for a short period, you can drive using an international driver's license. But if you plan to stay longer, you will have to apply for a Thai driver's license.

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  • Expats from certain countries can use their driving licence in Hong Kong. You may also be able to apply for a licence there without taking a driving test.

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  • In order to drive in Macau you will need to legalise your licence at a police station. For stays longer than a year, you will need a local licence,

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Removal

moving, formalities and useful tips
  • If you are moving to South Korea with your belongings, you must find a reliable moving company to move your things to South Korea safely.

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  • Relocating to India requires appropriate planning. It is better to hire removal experts who will take care of all related formalities on your behalf.

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  • Expats moving to India are only allowed to bring 2 pets per person, and only if they can prove that they intend to spend at least 2 years in India.

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  • To be allowed to travel to Hong Kong with your pet, you will need to request a special import permit from local authorities.

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  • Moving to Thailand requires a good planning. For the removal of your belongings from your home to Thailand, you will need to hire an international carrier.

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Communications

Phone line, internet provider, post office
  • South Korea's telephone network is one of the most developed in the world, and mobile phones are an essential part of the lives of the locals.

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  • Expats can either use their mobile phone with an Indian SIM, or choose to get a landline installed. Mobile networks are not as developed in rural areas.

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  • You can get connected to the internet in India visa your portable device with a SIM card and data plan, or via a landline.

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  • Expats in Thailand should get their mobile phone unlocked by their service provider in their home country, so that the phone can be used with a Thai SIM.

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Leisure

Sports, leisure and cultural activities
  • South Koreans love sports and are very active. If you, too, are a sports fan, you will enjoy the sports enthusiasm in South Korea.

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  • From hikes in spectacular nature reserves to amusement parks and historical sites, South Korea has leisure activities for everyone.

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  • Various leisure activities are available in Thailand, whether you prefer cultural activities or outdoor pastimes.

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  • Whatever your interests are, Hong Kong is sure to have activities to fill your leisure time, from sports to nightlife.

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  • Besides shopping, walks and cultural events, there are several other ways to keep yourself busy in Hong Kong; namely, sports activities.

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Miscellaneous

  • Your pet much meet certain criteria to travel to South Korea. Find information about how to move with your dog, cat, or another type of pet to South Korea.

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  • If you are in Thailand and you have children under 5 years old, you can choose to send them to a nursery or hire a nanny.

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  • Hong Kong inhabitants' lifestyle is a bright mixture of modernism with Chinese traditions and customs which you can discover during your stay.

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  • There are a number of international schools offering pre-primary, primary and secondary education. Parents of younger children can hire a live-in nanny.

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