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(Video) Why It’s Okay to Drink Alone in Korean (Honsul)

By July 28, 2020 No Comments

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When you learn to speak and write Korean, you will find a lot of words that are just made up, and cannot be found in a regular dictionary. Beeline Language Korean will look at some of these slang words and explain to you, so you would know what these words or phrases mean. Today, we will with learning the word 혼술[Honsul] , which is a popular drinking culture among young millennials in Korea.

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What is Honsul? How was the word created? 

혼술 [Honsul] is a mixture of the Korean words for “alone” and “alcoholic beverages”. Since the verb ‘drinking’ is already implied under 술 [sul], we could just directly translate that into ‘alone drinking alcoholic beverage’. Some may say this is a short form for 혼자 술마시기 [hon-ja sul-ma-shi-gi].

Hon is a short form of 혼자[Honja] and often when 혼 [hon] is placed infront of another Korean word, it usually works as adverb for ‘alone’.

honsul korean

Sample Sentences Using Honsul

난 오늘 혼술할꺼야 [nan o-neul hon-bap hal-ggeo-ya] I will be drinking alcohol alone today.

그냥 혼술하고 싶어지는 금요일 밤이네요. [hon-sul ha-go-shi-peo-ji-neun geum-yo-il bam-ee-ne-yo] This is the Friday night that you just would like to drink alone.

How did Honsul become a thing in Korea

Although you may be familiar with drinking alone at a bar in western culture, it is quite uncommon in Korea. Many Koreans work late, and after work, they replenish their team spirit by going out together and drink until the late hours. This is very typical every day lives of corporate employees in Korea.

However, the society is changing and more and more younger generations like to spend their own time alone, drifting away from the stereotype cultural norm that Korean people are heavily group oriented people. So, it’s completely okay and acceptable for you to go visit a pub in Seoul and drink a bottle of Soju all by yourself!

Happy Studying everyone!