How close-knit is the expat community in this area? How do I get involved with it?
The expat community in Ulsan is quite close-knit, partly due to the initial language and cultural barriers expats typically face when first relocating to Korea. However, this has changed over the past few years and will likely continue to change as Korea continues to open up and shed its "Hermit Kingdom' image of the past. Koreans' English-speaking capabilities continue to improve, and more and more Koreans are gaining international experiences through studying, working and traveling overseas.
The total number of foreigners residing in Korea makes up about 2.2% of the total population, just slightly over 1 million foreigners. A significant portion are ethnic Koreans from China and migrant workers. There are also a number of US military, diplomats, and English teachers. In terms of expats on assignment in Ulsan, the majority are engineers and contractors working in HHI, both on short-term and long-term assignments.
Beside expat groups, what is the best way to make social connections outside of work?
The Foreigners' clubhouse is a good way to make social connections outside of work. For families with school-aged children, the international school becomes a social network for the entire family. The chambers of commerce and women's networking clubs are all good options as well, however, these are largely active in Seoul. There are also a number of sports clubs; golf is extremely popular and there are running clubs (such as Seoul Hash House Harriers) for runners and hiking enthusiasts, etc. to all get involved in and meet new people.
Where can I meet other singles in this city?
A great way to meet other singles is to join the Ulsan Hash House Harriers or to become a member of the Foreigners' clubhouse.
Are there any unique networking opportunities for accompanying partners?
There are a few organized events which provide good networking opportunities for accompanying partners:
Moms & Tots is a meeting of mothers with children between 0 - 26 months. They meet at the Anchae Room in Bangeojin NFA. This is a good way to meet other mothers and share information about children.
Dado - FLiK Tea Event is organized by FLiK Service Center on the second Tuesday every month to discover the rich world of Korea's tea ceremony and new insights into Korean culture with a celebrated teacher. Tea and refreshments are arranged. This is a great way to learn about Korean culture and meet new friends.
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