The South East Asia Travel Show

Destination 2022: How Will South Korea Leverage K-Culture in Tourism?, with Dr Jaeyeon Choe

October 18, 2021

With travel starting to return, Gary kicks off a new series called Destination 2022. Each episode will analyse the travel outlook in places that will be hot tickets for South East Asian travellers. We start in South Korea – where the nation’s brilliantly packaged mix of K-pop, K-drama, K-cuisine and K-beauty, plus smart destination video marketing, have kept it top of mind for the region’s youthful travellers. Gary is joined by Dr Jaeyeon Choe in Seoul who teaches Tourism Studies at Swansea University, and is Visiting Professor at the School of Hospitality and Tourism at Hue University, Vietnam. South Korea is nearing a 70% vaccination rate, and unlike in many Asian nations South Korean travellers have been heading overseas, mostly to Europe, all summer. We discuss the outlook for inbound travel, and assess how South Korea is using ‘Soft Power’ to promote itself as a destination, ranging from the popularity of TV shows like Squid Game and megabands BTS and Blackpink to the surging appeal of Korean cuisines and cosmetics. We cover South Korea’s presence at the Dubai World Expo, exciting new destination videos themed around Night Tourism and Korean fashions and the Singapore-South Korea Vaccinated Travel Lane. Jaeyeon also guides us to some hot destinations and trends among domestic travellers. Plus, we ask where South Koreans will be heading for Christmas/New Year and Lunar New Year 2022.