What to spend your hwan on
Tour of the 600-year-old Changdeokgung Palace
A bottle of local beer at a restaurant
Fast food meal in Seoul
Express train from Incheon International Airport to Seoul city centre
Traditional paper fan
Must-sees in South Korea
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The only won you’ll need
The won was introduced as Korea’s official currency in 1902, replacing the yang. However, this only lasted until 1910, when the yen took over. The won was reintroduced from 1945-1953 and, after a nine-year spell with the hwan, it was officially brought back in 1962; it has remained the legal tender ever since.
Day-to-day living can be relatively inexpensive for frugal types in South Korea, where a meal in a modest restaurant can be enjoyed for just 10,000 KRW (which works out roughly around 6 GBP!).
Tipping is not common practice in South Korea, however 5-10% will be appreciated in a Western-style restaurant.
Frequently used banknotes and coins
Won notes come in denominations of 500 (green and pink), 1,000 (purple), 5,000 (orange), 10,000 (green) and 50,000 (yellow). Coins are also frequently used – the most useful denominations are to the value of 50, 100 and 500 denominations, since these are handy for making up the change if your bill doesn’t come to a whole 1,000 won.
Won notes come with a number of security features aimed at combatting fraud, including 3D holograms and colour shifting ink and feature images of famous local figures and South Korean wildlife.
Buying South Korean Hwan online is easy
Free next-day home delivery on orders over 600 GBP
- 1. Select your currency
Just tell us how much you need and where you’re going
- 2. Choose how to get it
Get your currency delivered to your door or collect at over 50 Travelex stores
- 3. Pay online
Use either your debit card or credit card and you’re all set