Hallie Bradley, author of the blog "Soul of Seoul," said the reluctance can throw expats for a loop."On the subway someone might sit next to you because they want to practice English.For young Koreans, college often offers the first chance to date without parental interference or oversight.Because of this, university districts are common places to look for young singles.
Contemporary customs don't frown upon relationships with the opposite sex, which allows couples to form more organically.
/ Courtesy of Hallie Bradley"A lot of people say that Western guys in Korea only want to date Korean girls and Korean guys only want to date Korean girls," she said. "There are men who are exceptions."She eventually began going out with a Korean, a "rebellious and unique" man who "liked being different." But her initial expectations reflected common perceptions about dating here, where it's more common to see heterosexual couples of expatriate men and Korean women, than vice-versa.
The number of Korean man-expat woman couples appears to be on the rise, however.
Dating services are also very common, with 1,000 dating agencies open in South Korea alone.
For young Koreans, it is common to partner with matchmaking sites and dating services in the quest to find true love -- and equally as common for parents to be the ones signing them up for such services.