Do You Text in Korean? Here’s How to Make Your Texts Friendlier – Seoulistic

Do You Text in Korean? Here’s How to Make Your Texts Friendlier

If you’re living in Korea, texting in Korean will become a part of daily life. Make sure you do as the Koreans do and make your texts friendly and cute so you don’t seem like jerk. Here’s a few simple ways you can make sure your texts seem nicer 🙂


Add a Tilde (~)

If you’re an English texter, you probably don’t have much use for the tilde (the squiggly line next to the number 1 on keyboards). But if you’re going to text in Korean, you’ll find yourself using this in no time as it adds a tiny bit of friendliness to any statement you make. It essentially represents stretching of the vowels (think 잖아-jana). Watch and learn:

미워 (miweo) – I don’t like you.
(Potential reaction: Damn! Why you gotta hate yo!)
미워~ (miweo~) – I don’t like you~
(Potential reaction: Aww… why you gotta be like that?)

Tip: The more tildes you add, the more you’re stretching (and making things nicer)… kinda~~~~~~ (see? :))


Add ㅎ or ㅋ to the End of Anything

ㅎ and ㅋ are the equivalent to “haha” in English. They’re the sounds people make when they laugh. So even if you’re not laughing at anything, just sticking it in there will make your texts seem lighter in nature. See what a few simple ㅎ or ㅋ can do to a sentence:

식물이 죽었어 (shikmuli jukeosseo) – “the plant is dead”
(Geez, you don’t beat around the bush do you?)
식물이 죽었어 ㅋㅋㅋ (shikmuli jukeosseo) – “the plant is dead hahaha”
(haha, dead plants are funny!)


Add an Emoticon to the End of your Statements

Have you checked out’s list of Korean emoticons? It’s crazy helpful. But for this, if you don’t want to express any specific emotion via text and just want to make yourself seem friendlier, use the most generic Korean emoticon: ^^. Even a sad face, the most common being ㅜㅜ, is well appreciated by Korean texters. Watch people love you more when you use emoticons:

오빠 취소해서 미안해 (oppa cwisohaeseo mianhae) – Sorry for canceling.
(Potential reaction: Whatever…)
오빠 취소해서 미안해 ㅜㅜ (oppa cwisohaeseo mianhae) – Sorry for canceling 🙁
(Potential reaction: aww… she’s being genuine!)
오빠 취소해서 미안해 ^^ (oppa cwisohaeseo mianhae) – Sorry for canceling 🙂
(Potential reaction: oh, it’s all good baby girl!)

Combo it up for Ultra Friendliness

Combine these and get the ultimate friendly text:

돈 많이 잃었어 (don manhi ilheosseo) – I lost a lot of money
(dang that sucks)
ㅋㅋㅋ 돈 많이 잃었어~ ^^ (don manhi ilheosseo) – haha, I lost a lot of money~ 🙂
(Oh, you did? Awesome!)


Optional: Text like a Female Student

The cutest texters in Korea are female students. They like to add these cute little sounds that are sometimes used in real life, but mostly used in the world of texting. While there are too many to list, here are some common examples:

네 (ne-yes) -> 넵
바빠? (bappa?-busy?) -> 바빵? (you can add ㅇ to end many words)
아니야 (aniya-no) -> 아니얌

Tip: Not recommended for guys, unless texting like a Korean high school girl is your thang.

Have any other tips on making your texts seem friendlier in Korea? Share in the comments!

Keith Kim is a Korean-American who has been living in Korea for almost a decade. Being in a unique position as both a Korean and a non-Korean, he's put all his experience and knowledge for surviving in Korea in Survival Korean . Read it to learn how you can survive in Korea. Follow him on Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.


  1. Yuna says:

    Do college girls also text “like a female student”? I’m 21. When does it become immature? Or does it depend whether you’re texting with a guy or girl? Thanks.

  2. Danae says:

    Isn’t it a bit cheesy sometimes?

  3. Keith says:

    @Yuna – I’ve seen a 30 year old do it. I thought it was immature for her… but everyone has their own way of texting 🙂 But plenty of college students do it all the time 🙂

  4. Younghyun says:

    like a female student text is used many women in korea not girls. my mother use it and my sister use it and my female friends use it! and also i think guys use it in text with their girl friends(but actually not wife and not friends).
    if yuna use this “like a female student”, it’s not abnormal. don’t worry and use it!

  5. Hansen says:

    Hahaha~ thx Keith! now i know why my korean teacher text like that 😀

  6. eiko says:

    I briefly knew a girl from Korea and the first time i got a text from her, my reaction was: “What’s wrong with her keyboard?” XD

  7. miiko says:

    ㅋㅋㅋ very weird ^^

  8. eogi says:

    i mean is that necessary ㅋㅋㅋㅋ

  9. KP says:

    Thanks! My adult female students have started texting me and this will come in handy when decoding and texting them back!

  10. charlese says:

    OM G~~~~ 감사합니다 오빠~~~~~^-^ Thank chuuu~~~ so much for this ^-^ because I recently made a friend from Korea and I used this style of texting and everything u say is TRUE~~~ ㅋㅋㅋ because he used some if the same symbols u were talking about^^

  11. Tina says:

    I want to have korean friends before I go to Korea

  12. rez says:

    more knowledge… i want to know what is the meaning of this (오빠~

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