On the new Korean address system

I have just got a letter from my local government saying that everybody should start using the new address naming system starting next year (which is 2014). The letter contained a short introduction to the new system. Since there doesn’t seem to be many articles about this new system on the net, I have decided to write a short one on my blog.

1. How do I know my new address if I only know my old address?

Type your old address at http://www.juso.go.kr. If you have a smartphone, you can also install and use 주소찾아 to find the new address. In some cases, part of the new address can also be found by simply going outside and looking for a blue panel near the entrance to where you live. It’s written on the blue panel.

2. Difference between the new address system and the old

The old address is called 지번주소, the new one is called 도로명주소.

Example of a 지번주소:

X도 Y시 Z구 A동 123 or X-do Y-si Z-gu A-dong 123

Example of a 도로명주소:

X도 Y시 Z구 B로 456(A동) or X-do Y-si Z-gu B-ro 456(A-dong)

In the old address, A동 is the name of 동 (dong) where you live. Names of 동 always end with 동. 123 is 지번 which is always a number (sometimes with a dash in it (as in 12-34)). 동 and 지번 together determine one building.

In the new address, B로 is a street name, i.e., 도로명. 도로명 always ends with 로(i.e., -ro) or 길(i.e., -gil). 456 is 건물번호 which is always a number (also sometimes with a dash in it). 도로명 and 건물번호 together determine one building. A동 in parentheses is optional.

What if the building is an apartment building where more than one families live?

Example of 지번주소 if you live in an apartment building:

X도 Y시 Z구 A동 123 D아파트 7동 890호

Same example but as 도로명주소:

X도 Y시 Z구 B로 456, 7동 890호(A동, D아파트)

In the 지번주소, D아파트 is the name of the apartment and 7동 890호 determines where you live within the apartment. If you are thinking that writing D아파트 seems redundant, you are not alone.

In the 도로명주소, stuff in the parentheses is again optional.

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