Buying gifts can be a really overwhelming thing to do, especially if you are searching for Korean housewarming gifts.
However, when it comes to Korea, you don’t really have to think too much because the Korean culture has a list of gifts you can buy for Korean housewarming parties, birthdays, weddings and traditional Korean holidays.
Korean housewarmings are known as jipdeuri (집들이), where family and friends gather to have food and of course exchange gifts!
This list of recommendations for traditional Korean housewarming gifts will not only impress your family and friends and also show that you have a level of knowledge about the Korean culture.
1. Toilet paper 화장지
A popular traditional gift to bring to a Korean housewarming parties are rolls of toilet paper.
Furthermore, the length of the of the toilet paper also symbolizes prosperity.
The tradition of buying toilet goes back to when Korea was a poorer country and at that time not everyone could afford to buy toilet paper as it was considered pricey.
Tip: If you are worried about your host having too much toilet paper that would last them for 7 generations, you can opt for paper towels, or facial tissues.
2. Laundry detergent/Washing powder 빨래 세제
Laundry detergent and washing powder might seem like an odd gift but everyone uses it, making it another very practical Korean housewarming gift besides the toilet paper.
Laundry detergent was another household item that people back in the day could not afford to buy.
The newly wedded couples, will definitely appreciate and enjoy getting practical gifts like this.
In Korean culture, washing powders have an alternate meaning as well.
The detergent symbolizes a home that is physically and spiritually pure.
The round shiny bubbles represents money and prosperity.
Getting a laundry detergent as a housewarming gift is a wish for the new homeowners to have a pure and prosperous home to live in.
Tip: Another common variation of a laundry detergent is a dish washing soap.
3. Potted plants 화분
Another popular Korean housewarming gift is plants in a pot!
Potted plants, especially if they have scented flowers can add a touch of color and life into a new home.
Koreans believe that green plants symbolizes health, prosperity a thriving business and life.
Two popular traditional plants to gift is the window-leaf plant and the snake plant.
The window-leaf plant has large green fronds with oblong shaped holes between them.
This plant has high tolerant to dry and warm weather making it a low maintenance houseplant.
This plant also symbolizes good luck in business and can be often found at Korean business openings.
On the other hand, the snake plant has long, pointed leaves with different shades of green on the leaves. This plant grows in dry and shady conditions.
4. Alcoholic beverages 주류
If you feel household items and plants are a little old and outdated for your modern friends, you can bring a bottle of wine or whiskey to the Korean housewarming party!
If you don’t speak Korean, the alcohol also might come to an advantage as it helps break down the awkward language barrier between you and the host.
Tip: do make sure to double check if your host consume alcoholic beverages or not.
Lastly, it is not a must to bring these gifts and it's not like the Koreans are going to hate you for not bringing them any gift.
But they must have really liked you if they invited you to their house warming party!
So you can return their favor by bringing any of these cool gifts.
Have you bought any of these Korean housewarming gifts?
Do you have any other housewarming gifts for a suggestion?
Let us know in the comment section!
Since we are discussing on the topic of shopping, click here to check out our old blog post on trendy and unique items to you probably never thought of buying in Korea!