Ultimate Guide to Noraebang in Korea

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Guide ultime du Noraebang en Corée

Heading to Noraebang in Korea is one of the must-do activities when you’re in the country! A well-loved get-together entertainment choice among Koreans as well as tourists. Whether you wish to experience Korean culture while spending a great time with your friends or looking to sing your heart out, Noraebang is the way to go! Here we put together an ultimate guide to Noraebang in Korea for anyone who is visiting Korea soon, let’s discover them below!

How did the term Noraebang come about?

When translated directly, norae (노래) refers to song while bang (방) refers to room. So putting two words together, Noraebang means a singing room, a Korean version of karaoke. Noraebang made its first entrance into Korea in the early 1990s and has seen growing popularity ever since, becoming one of Korea’s top entertainment spots.

Did you know that the official legalised name of Noraebang is Norae yeonseubjang (노래연습장)? Directly refers to ‘singing practice place’!

Types of Noraebang in Korea

Song machine at Noraebang in Korea

Normal Noraebang 

The room is charged hourly and usually costs around KRW 20,000 to 30,000. Normally there is no limit to your group size however if you’re in a big group and require a bigger room, it will cost more. Additionally, since Noraebang in Korea attracts people of all ages, the normal Noraebang is not allowed to sell any alcoholic beverages. Nonetheless, you may still buy other drinks or snacks to enjoy while singing!

A cool tip! The hourly room fee may be cheaper if you avoid going during peak periods. Try going during the late morning or early afternoon. Sometimes you may even be given free drinks or snacks as a ‘service’.

Coin Noraebang 

Another popular choice is the Coin Noraebang which is similar to the normal one, except that it has smaller rooms and normally charges per song. One song typically costs KRW 500 or pay less for more songs. For example, 5 songs for KRW 2,000. Although there is also an option to pay an hourly fee, the pay-per-song structure seems more appealing to most. If you just have 30 minutes to spare, why not find the nearest Coin Noraebang and sing your top 5 songs?

Something to take note of at Coin Noraebang in Korea, they are often unmanned so expect to use the service kiosks near the entrance.

Noraebang that sells alcohol

You must know that the Korean people take their drinking culture very seriously and often meet up for 2 or 3 rounds of eating and drinking in one night. And so, Noraebang in Korea which sells alcohol also became one of the top places to go for social activities. While having the same room rate structure as the normal Noraebang, they allow patrons to purchase and consume alcohol on the premises.

Due to this difference, minors below the age of 19 are not allowed in such Noraebang in Korea. If you do visit, do expect that the staff will verify your age by requesting to check your identity card or passport.

Entertainment Noraebang

This Noraebang in Korea is catered to a specific group of customers and is also referred to as the adult entertainment karaoke bar. As the name suggests, not only does it provide a karaoke room, but it also has alcohol and accompanied ‘female staff’. By far, this could be the most expensive type of Noraebang in Korea.

Two ways that can help to identify a karaoke bar are those Noraebang you would come across at the Redlight District or one that has a dancing lady silhouette on its signboard.

Rooms at Noraebang in Korea

What to do when you arrive at a Noraebang

Pay upon arrival

For places that are manned by staff, approach the service counter and let them know how many hours you would like to sing. If you want any drinks or snacks, you can also pay altogether. Don’t worry if you would like to extend longer as you can simply do so before your time is up. For Noraebang which is unmanned, proceed straight to the service kiosk to pick your preferred duration or number of songs!

Before entering the room

Remember to take the microphone sleeves at the counter so you can cover the top of the microphones for hygienic purposes. Noraebang in Korea may require you to remove your shoes upon entering the room.

Ways to select songs

The earliest method to search and pick a song is by flipping through pages from a provided songbook and then inputting the song number before hitting the Sijak (시작, start) button. However, this is extremely time-consuming for those who are not Korean speakers.

The more efficient way is to use the remote controller to search for songs on the karaoke system. Switch between Han (한, Korean) and Yeong (영, English) keyboard options to search for songs and press Yeyak (예약, reserve) to add them to the queue!

If you want to sing it right away, press Seontaek (선택, select) and Chwiso (취소) to cancel a song. To look at the list of the latest songs, click Singokannae (신곡안내) or press Inkichateu (인기차트) for popular songs. If you have a specific song, hit Gasu (가수) to search for the singer or Jemok (제목) to search for the song title. Did you know there are songs in Japanese, Chinese, English, and many others?

K-pop idols videoclip at Noraebang in Korea

Fun facts about Noraebang in Korea

Minors are prohibited after 10 pm

Minors under the age of 19 are not allowed entry into Noraebang after 10 pm even when accompanied by an adult.

The score system

After singing, the screen will display a number which is your score out of 100. Well, it seems that the score is not a measure of how well one sings but is given according to accuracy. Fret not though, you can remove the score rating system!

Themed Noraebang

Some of the Noraebang in Korea are themed and provide special effects such as disco lights, tambourines, and sound effects. Some even come in standing microphones to unleash your singer side!

Free singing time

Singing for free? Sometimes you will be given extra singing time usually between 5 to 30 minutes which they call a ‘service’. Sadly, it is not applicable for Coin Noraebang where they adopt the pay-per-song system.

Do you love singing? Or do you wish to experience Korean culture in Korea? Sign up for one of our Study trip programs. Korean cultural activities include Noraebang with fellow students!

Remember to follow the Go! Go! Hanguk blog for more content, and be sure to contact us about living and studying in Korea!

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