It’s getting colder and colder by the week and the cold in Korea isn’t going to wait for you to bundle up. You need to prepare ahead before the cold breeze catches up to you. But don’t worry! We’re going to help you warm up those freezing hands and stay safe in the brutal cold in Korea. Here are three essential items that you should prepare.
1. Hot Packs
Hot packs in Korea actually come in multiple sizes for different parts of the body. There are ones for your hands, feet, and back. These are absolute lifesavers when it comes to the harsh cold of Korea and just one will last you for at least 12 hours.
The warmup process will take a few minutes. In order to get them to be hot, you have to shake hot pack for a few minutes and keep them inside your clothes away from the cold outside air. If they are exposed to the cold, then it will get less hot and take even longer to reach the intended temperature.
All of these hot packs are disposable and are sold at any convenience store and other discount stores, such as Daiso and Artbox. There are also heatable cute hot packs if you want to use it more than once without the need to constantly buy disposable hot packs. Some are heated with microwaves, some with a USB charger, and some with hot water.
2. Electric Blanket
Usually in Korean homes, including apartments, they have an awesome underfloor heating system called Ondol (온돌). It’s where warm water flows through the pipes beneath the floor to warm up the room. It feels even better to lay down after coming home from the harsh cold.
But we’re mentioning the ondol first because not every home has this special feature and it could get pretty expensive from overuse during the winter. So the next best thing are electric blankets (전기담요). These can be found in most retail stores in Korea, such as E-mart, Homeplus, or Lotte Mart. These blankets come in multiple sizes so be sure to pick the size perfect for you.
3. Furry Socks
During winter, a certain body part is the quickest to get cold, and that is your feet. It has been scientifically proven that keeping your feet warm helps to redistribute heat around the body, while also giving you a deep and comfortable sleep. In Korea, there’s a certain item that will help with your cold feet: furry socks.
These furry socks, or 수면양말 (soo-myeon-yang-mal), are exactly what the name implies. They’re socks with a layer of fur on the outside meant to keep your feet warm, specifically made for winter. These socks are super cheap too so you can buy them in bulks pretty much anywhere.
These are the three must-have items for the cold that we recommend you to get for the winter preparation. Now you can roam the streets of Seoul without any fear of freezing or catching a cold. Be warm and enjoy this coming winter!