How to save money in South Korea

Hello everyone,

Did you plan your budget before your move to South Korea? If so, how did you go about it?

How do you save money in your day to day life? Do you find there are any areas where you can't cut costs?

Do you have any tips about saving money in South Korea? For example, getting the best deals on accommodation, grocery shopping and dining out, the best value transportation, etc..

Are there any apps or websites that have helped you to save money?

Thank you for sharing your experience.


Upon arriving in Korea I didn't have a budget right away, to allow for move differentials.

Now, I try to stick to a budget and save daily by being frugal about unnecessary buys, particularly to avoid accumulating stuff since we'll be moving again in 2.5 years.

While grocery shopping, I focus on deals of the day/week and plan the menu based on that.

Hi! I moved to Korea about 2 yrs ago on a scholarship 900,000 won a month.  I made 2 promises to myself before moving there 1) not to go over 900,000 a month (during those 2 yrs i only went over budget only 3 times, the month i first move 2 korea, my first birthday in korea and the month I moved to a new apartment near itaewon) 2) to keep tract of every cents i spent.

Tip:  from a broke student perspective
1) If u a student live in the dorm at least for a while and save-- dorm are usually way cheaper than living  outside.
2) don't really look at housing in craisglist- i find the price ask to be higher than average
3) I heard buying groceries/ fruits are cheaper at traditional market but to be honest I would not know. Homeplus is the first supermarket that i went when moving to korea and I kindna stick to it. they always have deal.
4) foods/drinks in itaewon are overprices avoid if u can
5) get a t-money card
6) take taxi only in case of emergency.
7) cooking your own food is not necessary cheaper than eating outside (korean food)
8) love drinking-  hit the convenience stores with ur friends. way cheaper and gs25 also have cheaper fried chicken.
9) check out daiso/gmarket
10) shop at underground shopping instead of department store

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