The climate of Korea is characterized by four distinct seasons: spring, summer, fall, and winter.
All visitors to the Republic of Korea must have a valid passport and visa. Visitors with roundtrip tickets from countries who have a special agreement with Korea may be exempt from the visa requirement, and can stay in Korea visa-free for up to 30 days or 90 days, depending on the terms of the agreement between two countries. If uncertain about the entry requirements into the country, please contact your nearest Korean embassy or a consulate as soon as possible.
For more information: http://www.mofat.go.kr/english/visa/apply/index.jsp
If you need an invitation letter, please send a mail to "acl2012.conference at gmail.com".
Current & Exchange
The unit of currency in Korea is the Korean Won (KRW).
Various notes and coins are used. Notes occur in 1,000, 5,000, 10,000 and 50,000 won denominations, while coins occur in 10, 50, 100, and 500 won denominations. As of April 2010, the exchange rate is approximately KRW 1,100 to USD 1 and KRW 1,500 to EUR 1. Foreign bank notes and traveler’s checks can be converted into the Korean won at foreign exchange banks and other authorized money exchange outlets. The exchange rate is subject to market fluctuations.
Standard Time in Korea is 9 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT+9).
Tipping is not a customary practice in Korea.
Banking & ATM
There are plenty of places in Korea to change currencies, including banks, authorized currency exchanges and major hotels. ATM machines are ubiquitous, although not all offer services for foreign cards. Cards with the Plus and Cirrus logos are the easiest to use and most widely accepted in Korea. Banks are open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Mondays to Fridays.
Government office hours are usually from 9:00 to 18:00 on weekdays and are closed on weekends. Most stores are open every day from 10:30 to 20:00, including Sundays.
Tax & VAT
Foreign tourists can receive nearly 10 percent VAT refunds for purchases at duty free shopping outlets. Goods must be taken out of Korea within three months of purchase to be eligible for a tax refund. A Value-Added Tax (VAT) is levied on most goods and services at a standard rate of 10% and is included in the retail price. At hotels, a 10% VAT is applied to rooms, meals and other services and is included in the bill.
The standard voltage in Korea is 220 volts. The outlet has two round holes and is the same type used in France, Germany, Austria, Greece, Turkey and many other countries.
BBB (Before Babel Brigade): Volunteer Interpretation Service
Whenever and wherever you encounter communication problems with Koreans, just call 1588-5644 and press a number for your preferred language. Your call will be quickly connected to a BBB volunteer's mobile phone through an automated switchboard, and you will soon receive interpretation service.
※ BBB volunteer services are available in 16 languages.
※ For more information, please refer to BBB Korea official webpage (www.bbbkorea.org). If you don’t have a mobile phone in Korea, just show a BBB card to any Korean nearby, so that he/she can Help you with their mobile phone.