Corona Virus: South Korea Travel Advice
The corona virus is spreading rapidly all over the world and is influencing all of our lives. If you have a trip planned to South Korea, you are probably wondering if you should cancel or postpone your trip. This guide will help you make an informed decision.
What Is The Novel Corona Virus?
The corona virus (COVID-19) was first reported in Wuhan, China on the 31st of December 2019 and has since then spread across the world. The virus is genetically closely related to the 2003 SARS virus.
There is very little information available about the severity of the virus and on the mode of transmission. But the virus seems to be transmitted mainly through respiratory droplets that people sneeze, cough or exhale. The incubation period is around 2 to 14 days.
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1. Symptoms Of The Corona Virus
The symptoms of the corona virus are quite similar to those of a mild flue. Generally, the people at risk are the elderly or those with underlying health conditions. Symptoms include:
- difficulty breathing
- pain in the muscles
- Hand Gel – Wash your hands frequently and use hand gel after touching things in public. Click here to buy travel hand gel.
- Face Masks – It is said that face masks don’t do much to prevent catching the virus but all small bits count, no? Click here to buy face masks.
What Are The Effects Of The Corona Virus In Korea
Until the 17th of February 2020, South Korea was doing really well in containing the virus and treating infected people. Due to a recent corona outbreak in a sect in Daegu, the number of infected people have been increasing rapidly.
Many big events, festival, concerts, conferences, etc have been cancelled or postponed. Find info about cancelled events here. The streets are emptier than usual and very few tourists are currently travelling to South Korea.
1. Important Rescourses
- Click here for Corona Virus live updates
- South Korea corona virus hotline: 1330, option 4 for English
- Find the latest situation on the Korean Center for Disease Control and Prevention website
Should You Cancel Your Trip To Korea?
We keep getting the same question from people who are planning to visit Korea during the cherry blossom season in March: should we cancel or postpone our trip? I can’t give a definite answer as this is ultimately your decision but here is some advice:
- Don’t travel to Daegu! – Daegu city and Cheongdo are ‘special care zones’ in Korea which have the highest number of corona cases.
- Personal Hygiene – Wash your hands on a regular basis, avoid touching things in public spaces, use hand gel and wear a face mask. Hand gel and masks are almost completely sold out in South Korea so make sure bring your own supply.
- Health Issues – If you have serious health issues, it is currently not recommended to travel to Asia.
- The Odds – There are a total of 50 million people living in South Korea and currently around 700 have the corona virus (as of 24th of Feb). This means 1 in 90 000 people have the virus and the majority of these people are from a religious group.
- Avoid Big Crowds – This is quite easy as most tourist sites are rather empty.
It is only natural to worry about travelling to South Korea, especially because so little is known about the virus. It’s up to you to decide to cancel or postpone your trip.