If you’re traveling to Korea, you’ll need to know how to say some basic things as it’s not guaranteed that everyone you meet will be able to speak English. Korean is itself not too difficult a language to learn. The biggest barrier for most people seems to be the script, but that’s not an issue once you sit down to learn it. It’s all very logical and is based on easy to remember syllable sounds that are a combination of a consonant and a vowel. You can learn the script literally in a few days, then it’s just a matter of practice to read it and write it.
Another difficult part of Korean is that it uses several thousand Chinese characters, commonly known as kanji. These are of course more difficult to learn, but they’re not impossible. They’re much harder to write though. They are often used in Korean to represent ideas or concepts, such as ‘love’, ‘hate’, ‘happiness’ and so on.
Some common greetings in Korean:
good morning/afternoon annyong haseyo
good evening annyong hashimnikka
goodbye annyonghi kasayo
good night annyonghi jumushipsiyo
How are you? Ch’oum poepgetsumnida.
My name is___ Chonun ______ imnida.
How are you? (informal) Ottoshimnikka?
Hello? (phone) Yoboseyo?
Do you speak English? Yeongeorul malsum halsu isseoyo?
Thank you Kamsahaimnida
1 hana 11 yol-hana
2 tul 12 yol-tul
3 set 13 yol-set
4 net 14 yol-net
5 tasot 15 yol-tasot
6 yosot 16 yol-yosot
7 ilgop 17 yol-ilgop
8 yodolp 18 yol-yodolp
9 ahop 19 yol-ahop
10 yol 20 sumul
30 sorun 40 mahun
50 shween 60 yesun
70 irun 80 yodun
90 ahun 100 baek
200 ee-baek 1000 ch’eon
10,000 man 100,000 ship-man
This is just a few of the most important words and vocabulary to get you started in Korean. There are many resources available online to learn the language properly for your trip to Korea.