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The basics
South Korea: Student Accommodation - Must read

Your guide to student accommodation in South Korea

We guide you through what it is like to study in South Korea with a focus on international student accommodation in South Korea and the options available.

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One of the most important aspects of evaluating a potential study abroad destination is the type of student accommodation you can get. Naturally, you want to have somewhere safe, secure and nice to stay while you embark on your academic adventure. 

Some of the important factors to consider when exploring your options are the cost, style and availability of student accommodation. In this article, we take you through what’s on offer for international students studying in South Korea and what you can expect.


Living in university dormitories


While some students choose to live off-campus, usually with a group of friends in rented accommodation, South Korean university dormitories (dorms) are a very popular option for first-time students. Many dormitories provide both a room and meals, which can help students who do not want to cook for themselves. It also makes a big difference in allowing you to adjust to your new environment and settle in, especially if it is your first time living away from home. 


Usually, students living in dormitories share a room with one to three other people and the rooms are already furnished. Bathrooms can be shared by the floor or attached to the room, depending on what the university offers. Always remember to check with your prospective university as to what the options are, including accessibility. 


Dormitories are almost always the closest housing to campus, which makes it easy to get to class. Dorms, though, usually have rules that you are required to follow, so make sure you understand your campus’ policy before deciding to live in a dorm. They are also a great way to feel part of the university community and make friends quickly. 


Costs range depending on the number of meals provided, the location and the university. Dorms can cost anywhere from GBP £400 to GBP £800 (USD $450 to $900) per semester. 


Get some tips on how to choose a hall of residence at university. 


Renting a goshiwon


A goshiwon is a small, fully-furnished room set up to provide the basic amenities needed for living. The rooms are a cheaper option than university accommodation, but be aware that they don’t have very much space. You can rent a goshiwon privately or through your university if they offer that service. 

They usually come furnished, although this can vary so make sure to check. You will most likely have to share a bathroom with your neighbours, and there can be rules that you are required to follow with curfew and having friends over.


Like dorms, pricing will vary depending on the city you are going to school in. Housing in Seoul is more expensive than housing in smaller cities, but goshiwons are generally inexpensive. Rent can be as low as GBP £150 (USD $170) per month. 


Find out more about the cost of living in South Korea


Living in a hasukjip


A hasukjip is a slightly older form of accommodation and quite similar to a homestay option. This style of accommodation is mostly used by students. They are almost always run by ajummas (older, married women) who cook breakfast and dinner every day. This can be nice for students that do not want to cook or worry about being homesick.


Living in a hasukjip can be a great way to immerse yourself in Korean culture and learn more about your new environment because you are living in a Korean person’s house. A hasukjip is almost always run independently of universities, but there tend to be more options close to university campuses. The prices are a little more expensive than a goshiwon, and begin around GBP £400 (USD $450) per month, but can be more expensive.


If you are considering studying in South Korea you may want to explore how to get a student visa.


Living off-campus


You always have the option to rent an apartment or house around your university, but this can be the most expensive option. One-room accommodation, or studio apartments, can be great for students who want more freedom and privacy. The average cost of rent in Seoul is GBP £950 (USD $1070) per month, but prices range depending on the type of accommodation and location. Seoul is a huge city, and you are bound to find something cheaper. 


When budgeting for accommodation during your time abroad, be sure to think of extra costs. Living costs associated with living in an apartment may include WiFi, water, electricity and food. Be sure that you understand the contract you are signing before entering into any agreement. Don’t forget that transportation is also an extra cost, especially if you are living in a large city. 

Start exploring your study abroad options now with our course matcher tool.