My Cute Little Apartment

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Left: hardgarbage; Right: food waste

I just gotta say Korea is wicked cool for their recycling/trash waste program. The orange bags that I was given are for soft food waste, the white bags are for hard food/regular trash (bones, packaging, egg shells, etc.) and recyclables can go into a plain plastic bag. They have set times that you are allowed to put your trash on the side of the road and they don’t pick it up on the weekends. So I can leave my trash outside after 8pm but not after 4am. I was told that some apartments have a sorter which makes it easier but for now, this is how my little apartment building works. My head teacher said that they use the orange bags for animal food. Love it.

It also super useful that they use keypads instead of keys. I just type in my digits and turn the knob.

The water is nice n hot 😁

Not only do they have keypads, they also have HEATED FLOORS. I have to say it took me a few weeks to understand how mine works but I got it figured out. The only downside is is that you can either have heated floors or hot water. Buttt, even when I don’t click that little button to the left of the On/Off switch, my water still gets pretty hot. It takes about 2 hours and 30-40 minutes for the heated floors to go back on after heating the water. Yes, I timed it πŸ˜‚

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My apartment also came with a washer, a rack that comes down from the ceiling for drying clothes, a stove top, and a fridge. You can adjust the drying rack which is nice because I’m short. My apartment also came with a TV so that was cool. I’m not really sure how other apartments are but from what I’ve seen it is pretty much the same setup as mine.

And since this room was previously used by other teachers, it also has a microwave and a mini toaster oven. I’m excited to make cookies in it. I also have a bunch of dishes- plates, silverware, bowls, all that great stuff. I was also lucky enough to have a little couch, a bed, a kettle, a little table, and some cookware. My favorite thing that came with this apartment: a Brita filter. I know that’s a little odd but with the amount of water that I drink, it just makes me happy. I brought a mini water filter from home just to be safe. I don’t even want to know how much money I spent when I was in Thailand. I bought water daily. So having a Brita saves both the environment and my wallet. Yay.

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Soo you walk in and there’s my couch to the left and the TV. Straight ahead there’s the fridge with all of my pictures on it 😊 Then there’s the mini kitchen and bathroom and to the left is my bedroom. To the left of my TV is the washer and drying rack.

It’s a few steps up from my Thailand apartment. Actually, it’s quite an improvement. I only had a fridge in Thailand so having a stove top and other appliances is wonderful.

There’s a lot of storage in my apartment. So much that I don’t even know how to fill it all up.

I borrowed this tree for Christmas. I don’t want to keep mentioning my TikTok but I put a before and after picture of the tree. I haven’t decorated a tree in years. It was nice decorating because I was by myself for Christmas so it was a fun little activity. So I spent Christmas Eve decorating and talking to friends. I spent Christmas Day cooking pasta and talking with friends and family.

Unpackingβœ…

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Two and a half weeks later and I am moved in!

It feels soooo nice to be settled into my apartment.

It’s cool cause the apartment that I’m staying in has been used by the previous teachers at my school so it already had some things that I would’ve had to buy here. More on that later.

I’m still trying to find places for stuff. I have about 90% of my belongings in their places. The pile of stuff in my bedroom will find homes at some point πŸ˜†

So I don’t have to keep repeating myself, I just want to mention that I’m not sure when I’ll even be back in the USA. I packed up my whole room and either brought it with me, donated it, or gave it to friends/family. Everything that I brought is in good condition so why throw it out?

It pains me to think back at the $500 that I spent for my huge suitcases. As I was unpacking, I realized that I did bring WAAAAY too much. So, was paying the $500 for my huge suitcases worth it? I’d have say no. However, I didn’t really know what to believe from the videos and blogs that I stumbled upon before arriving in Korea so it is what it is.

Things that I brought:

International Driving Permits: What Are They and Do I Need One? - Travel  World Heritage
AAA IDP. Not mine but mine looks exactly like this
My universal adapter. I got it on Amazon for $20 two years ago and still works great πŸ‘
  • Pictures. I have a bunch of pictures taped to my fridge. I printed them out at CVS and am SO happy that I did. My apartment in Thailand was not really that homey. If I had pictures I think it would’ve been.
  • Clothes. I brought lots of socks and bras/sports bras, dress shirts, jeans, tank tops, shorts, underwear, etc. I think I could’ve chilled with the amount of socks, bras, and tank tops that I brought. But most of them were new. I am excited to go shopping in Seoul to see what they have to offer. There are also some cute stores near me but it is cold and Covid is making its way back so I’ve decided to put my adventures on hold.
  • HDMI cord and Apple adapter. Other necessities: lightning cables, my universal adapter, portable chargers. I know I mentioned some of these in a previous post but, the HDMI cord and Apple adapter have been sooo useful. Of course, you can also get those here. But they were nice to have from my days in quarantine to now in my new apartment. It’s nice to be able to watch shows and such on a TV rather than my tiny iPad screen.
  • My IDP from AAA. I mean I haven’t used it yet but I’m really looking forward to renting a car and driving here. Again, since we’re in the middle of a pandemic it’s not recommended to take public transportation so starting on December 21, I can rent a car here and drive around. We’ll see if that actually happens. It’s cool cause you can post date it up to (I think) three months.
  • I also brought a duffle bag on the plane to bring because two suitcases just wasn’t enough πŸ˜’ I used my backpack and duffle bag as my two carry-ons. I’m thinking that the duffle bag will come in handy when I’m actually able to travel and I use my backpack to bring my laptop and small dinner to school.

Things that I brought that I definitely did NOT need to bring:

My water bottles 😍 If I had more space, I would’ve had more with me.
  • My cervical pillow (I found some at Homeplus that were actually half the price I paid for back home). Of course, they also have regular pillows.
  • Water bottles. I have a sick obsession with water bottles and I don’t know how to stop. I brought 2 water bottles, 1 travel tea mug, and a CrazyCap water bottle. I brought that for when I go on trips so I don’t have to buy plastic water bottles. They have plenty of different water bottles at Homeplus. Butttt, to be fair, the pandemic made me buy stuff that I clearly didn’t need. So I blame Covid.
  • Sneakers/any other shoes. Seoul has all different types of stores from Sephora to New Balance. I have yet to go there but I have looked up some stores for when I do go there post-pandemic.
  • Workout gear. I have my resistance bands and two ankle weights. I also brought my acupuncture and yoga mats. On one of my trips to Daiso, I saw that they had a good amount of workout gear so one of these days I’m taking my empty shopping bag and going crazy.

You can also buy items online through Gmarket. There’s also this cool website called Borderlinx where you can buy items, have it shipped to the US/UK and then they will ship it to you. There are other websites like Borderlinx but that’s the first one that came to mind. From what I’ve heard you do need a Korean bank account though so I guess I will have to wait. Luckily, I also have family in the US sooooo they can just ship stuff to me for a lower price (I think/hope) πŸ˜‚

I’ve also read that they don’t have deodorant here. They do. I think maybe it depends on your location? Either way, if they don’t have the kind you like, you can buy it online. You really don’t have to go too crazy (like me) and bring a bunch of stuff that you can easily buy here. The only thing is is that it might be more expensive here. The way that I look at it is you either pay lugging all of your things from the other side of the world or buy stuff here. It’s a lose-lose situation. I also think back to Thailand because I couldn’t find good shoes and other stuff that I needed so I thought “better be safe than sorry.” I just didn’t want to be stuck like that again.

iHerb also has a website in Korea, so that made my year. They’re international so that’s cool. Amazon also ships here but I haven’t tried it cause I’m thinking it will be expensive like it was in Thailand. I had ordered vitamins from iHerb back when I was in the US and loved them. I ran out right before I came to Korea but then found out that they are a thing in Korea so it was a great moment. I’m not sure how it works yet but once I get my ARC (alien registration card) I can play around with these online stores and write about them. What I do know is that iHerb has awesome products from supplements to makeup to tea. I’m actually scared for my bank account when I get my ARC.

Honestly, everything else that I brought I am okay with. Yeah, you can always go shopping here but walking everywhere with your hands full can be fun for only so long (cause I walk everywhere) It’s also difficult right now because of the whole pandemic thing.

What I wish I brought:

I honestly can’t think of anything that I wish I brought. I do miss my computer adapter, but I can easily just buy that online or at a store so I’m not too worried about it.

South Korea does use a different type of plug than the US. In the US we use type A and B. Korea uses C and F. Korea also has a voltage of 220 V and 60 Hz while the US has 120 V and 60 Hz. Like I said, I brought my little adapter. I kind of wish I brought something like this though cause it just would’ve made my life easier. But that is what online shopping is for.

You know when you’re packing and you’re like ahhhh I’m going to forget something?? Well, even after being here for more than a month, it’s still in the back of my brain. If I actually did forget anything, I will update this.

Make sure to check out my TikTok for some videos that I think are funny but they’re probably not πŸ˜€