When I arrived in Korea, I lived in a dorm called Anam 3. My room was shared between two other people. One of them was German and the other was Chinese. Though I’ve had the experience of living in a dorm before (freshman year of college), this one was different.
It was filthy, dirty, and disgusting. I swear, I literally moved in the day before the previous students has just moved out. Like literally. There was no fridge and the AC and heat would shutdown on us after some time. The hallways were always dark like the ones you see in The Grudge. On top of that, there was a cockroach the size of my index finger running around our room. I gave up.
I contacted the dorm manager that I was moving out and into this new place called ALLIVE GOSITEL. I was refunded 80% of my payment (600 dollars) and took my stuff and never looked back. This place became my closest friend for the next four months.
At Allive Gositel, the manager didn’t speak English, floors 2-4 were for guys, 5-6 were for girls and 7 were double rooms for anyone, there was free laundry, and a refrigerator in every room. If your room faced the streets, you paid $530 and if it didn’t, you paid $550. My room was on a girl’s floor, so guess what? I saw no one, but girls. The walls were so thin I could hear my neighbor talk and watch her dramas. At the same time, she could also hear me buzzing my hair, which I’m pretty sure was annoying.
My bathroom was literally a cubicle. When I was using the toilet, I had no leg space. When I was showering, I had to squeeze myself into a corner so the water wouldn’t leak out the door and into my “living room.” In order to shower, I had to control and move the shower head. It wasn’t like American showers where you stand in one spot and you’re good. Not in KOREA!
Another thing I didn’t have to worry about was laundry. It was FREE! While you may get free laundry, a drying machine was non-existent. As a conservative country, Korea does a good job on saving energy. Therefore, after our clothes finished washing, we would have to hang them up on a drying rack. After doing this for four months, I brought this habit back with me to the United States where I hang up my own clothes to dry.
To summarize what my place looked like, it was basically a cubicle. Enough room to move in and out. The same goes for my bathroom. Many Korean apartments vary in their own ways. I’ve been to apartments where you have literally no room and others where there’s enough space for a group of 10.