Have a fabulous 2012


Gaga: Rest in Peace (b.2002 - d.2010)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Hasukjib: Accomodation for Students in Seoul (Korea)

If you are you a foreign student coming to Seoul for the first time to study here and do NOT have an accommodation then how about considering to live in a Hasukjib. Hasukjib is a traditional Korean boarding house, popular among college/university students for their cheap monthly rent and less deposit or simply no deposit/key money option. Hasukjibs are ubiquitous in university neighborhoods and one such famous spot is Sinchon where Yonsei, Sogang, Ehwa and Hongik universities are at a walking distance from each other and has a student population of roughly 200,000 but since these student's and their network and former alumnus also gather there hence Sichon must have no less than quarter of a million people at any given time. So anyways, Hasukjibs are run by an Ajumma (middle-aged women) and sometimes an Ajushi(the Ajumma's husband) or both - who are usually the owners and take care of you during your stay from preparing meals and helping with homework.

(UPDATE on  HOMESTAY - April 2014): Stay is with a Korean grandfather and grandmother visit this post  and contact the email for details. Female students are preferred since other residents are all females).

 A cheap hasuk starts with 275USD or 275,000 won a month with different size of rooms from really spacious to really small, windowless bedroom with barely a space to stand. They are  usually equipped with desk, bookshelf, cable TV, a small refrigerator, and free internet. There is not much space in the rooms but  it varies from location to rate of the room.

Breakfast and dinner are served quite frequently with weekend BBQs but if you wanna have 3 meals or no meal or do your own cooking then they can arrange for that too with extra charges.

Your mates can be Korean and foreign students. I have personally never lived in a hasuk but some friends of mine from Germany, Canada and Japan have stayed in Hasuks and when I visited them, I kind of liked the environment except one of the hasuks.
Since many foreigners do NOT know Korean and thus can NOT visit Korean language forums therefore they miss out on a lot of good opportunities for accommodation but what is available in English forums is not very bad either.
I think that living in a hasuk is a very unique and interesting experience and if you do not have many options then this is a cheap and safe choice.

I did a comprehensive post last year on accommodation in Seoul with a listing of  few choices so check it out HERE if you are looking for a place to stay in Seoul.

For those interested to know about Goshiwon (고시원), it is quite similar to a jail cell with no windows and every window, no matter how small adds 50-100USD in your rent but still people live there and I wonder what sort of psychological and health hazards it leaves on people for years to come. Anyhow, an ALL ENGLISH WEBSITE for Goshiwon and Hasukjib hiring is HERE and HERE (gosi1.net).
 Try  this website (Goshipages.com) for both Hasukjib and gosiwon search - besides English it is also available in:

photocredits@ A Hasukjib  in Sindorim where a friend stayed for a while.