Jeffrey Miller

A Writer's Life

There are a million stories in the naked city…

And here are a couple of them.

In this case, the naked city is Seoul where I lived from 1990-2006. And here are some statistics to go along with all those stories, courtesy of an article printed in the Korea Times:

In Seoul, a city with a population of 10.4 million, the average resident is a 37.6-year-old married office worker with a bachelor’s degree and works 46.4 hours per week, according to a survey by Seoul City Hall and Statistics Korea released on Monday.

They take the subway to work and earn 3.6 million won as their monthly wage and spend 2.8 million won per month with 610,000 won covering food and 580,000 won going to private education.

Six out of 10 households earn between 2 million and 4 million won monthly, which makes them the so-called middle class.

The number of Seoul residents in their 20s or under is on the decline while the population of the older generation is increasing.

Every day there are 264 births, 106 deaths and 197 marriages. In 2009, 91,000 babies were born in Seoul, around a 3,700 decrease from the previous year.

There are 26,000 foreigners registered in Seoul, a five-fold jump from 10 years ago.

Each household is composed of 2.48 members on average and the number of single-person households takes up a 35 percent share, a 66-percent increase from 1999.

More than 42 percent of Seoul’s housing consists of apartments, while houses only account for 7 percent. The rest are multi-household houses.

About 47 percent of households are in debt, with the biggest portion being mortgage loans.

The subway is the most popular means of public transportation in Seoul with 7.2 million users a day, while buses have 4.6 million passengers.

The city estimates that the opening of Seoul Subway Line No. 9, the latest linking Gimpo International Airport with Kangnam, and high gas prices, together with traffic congestion, force many citizens to turn to public transport.

The number of vehicles registered in Seoul stands at 2.9 million, with around a 3 percent yearly increase every year for the last decade. An average of 249 people obtain a driver’s license daily.

The average household has 1.12 computers and 2.6 cell phones, and spends 145,000 won on communication costs per month.

Over the years, Seoul has become much more expensive to live in.

For instance, university tuition soared 121 times from 33,000 won per semester in 1970 to about 4 million won now.

Bus fares have jumped 25-fold from 40 won in 1977 to 1,000 won today, and subway fares have gone up from 30 won in 1974 to 1,000 won as of now.

Soju, one of the most favored liquors in Korea, cost 120 won per bottle in 1975, but is currently priced at 1,200 won.


  1. Holy crap, imagine if Soju is still 120 won now! Hahaha! Interesting statistics!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2019 Jeffrey Miller

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑