Housewarming Gifts to Wow Your Korean Family and Friends

Koreans throw separate housewarming parties for family, friends, and coworkers.

This post will help you figure out what to bring to a Korean housewarming party.

Lingua Asia Korean Housewarming Gift

It’s customary to bring a gift to a Korean housewarming party. But, it doesn’t have to be expensive. You can pick anything below within the budget you’re comfortable with.

Koreans like to receive a housewarming gift that’s either:

  • extremely useful or
  • something that they wouldn’t buy themselves, but would enjoy using

💡 These items make an amazing gift, for your loved ones or even yourself!

When do Koreans throw a housewarming party?

After moving to a new place, Koreans invite family (+ relatives), friends, and coworkers over for a feast.

Koreans host several parties, inviting different groups each time! They don’t like to mix different groups because it might get awkward. They’ll even throw separate parties for different friend groups like high school, uni, and social clubs.

Also, when a newlywed couple returns from their honeymoon, they host a housewarming party.

1. Toilet Paper, Kleenex, and Paper Towels

Lingua Asia_Moving Gift_Korea_2021
A classic housewarming gift set in Korea!

The US and Korea have something in common: TP is essential.

You might find it weird, but TP is considered a classic Korean housewarming gift.

This gift brings “good luck” for some reason.

It’s always a safe choice, especially if you’re not sure what their preferences are, and whether someone else bought the same thing or not.

If you add Kleenex and paper towels, you’ll get a smile out of your Korean hosts.

2. Zero Waste Cleaning Set

Lingua Asia Zero Waste Cleaning Set on Etsy

Detergent or dish soap is considered extremely useful in Korea.

It also wishes them to make a lot of money, as much as the soap bubbles that they make.

This eco-friendly cleaning set will definitely impress Korean housewives.

3. Capsule Coffee Machine

Lingua Asia Capsule Coffee Machine
Capsule coffee machine owned by my mom

Most Koreans, including my mom, LOVE capsule coffee machines.

This is a great gift to wow them.

You’ll just have to ask your hosts if they already own one. They’ll be happy to answer this question, so feel free to inquire.

4. Candles

Lingua Asia Beeswax Candles on Etsy

I haven’t met a Korean who dislikes candles.

Yank*e Candle used to be THE gift to give in Korea, until the health issue/recall in 2022.

This 100% pure organic beeswax candle with pure essential oils looks like a nice choice.

From design to ingredients, they’re sure to appreciate this gift!

5. Diffuser

Lingua Asia Aromatherapy Diffuser on Etsy

If you want to give something more impactful than candles, a diffuser is a good idea.

Koreans really like diffusers from brands like Jo Malone and Diptyque.

Or, you can try this aromatherapy diffuser for something unique and beautiful!

Interesting Fact!

  • Housewarming parties are called jibdeuri (집들이) in Korean.
  • Koreans believe that a big housewarming party brings good luck. So, it means they’ll cook A LOT!
  • In the past, Koreans used to celebrate with the whole village, but not anymore.
  • Koreans also had the culture of giving “moving rice cakes” as a way of greeting neighbors and warding off evil spirits by sharing red bean steamed rice cake (sirutteok). Sadly, this custom is disappearing.

6. Air Fryer

Air fryers have become an essential cooking appliance in the motherland.

It’s supposed to be healthier than deep frying, and more energy-efficient than an oven.

Just like the capsule coffee machine above, make sure to ask your host before buying this one.

Lingua-Asia_Line_Lotus

7. Table Lamp

lingua asia_etsy_table lamp

Another popular gift is a dimmable lamp that’s called “mood light/lamp (무드등 or moo-deu-deung)” in Korean.

Any minimal design will work, but you can also check out this handmade carved wooden table lamp.

Its traditional Korean house shape looks hip, and they’ll love this thoughtful gift!

8. Flower Bouquet

Lingua Asia Dried Flower Bouquet on Etsy

Flower bouquets are huge in Korea.

If you’re worried that the host is a “plant assassin” like me, or you want to give something that will stick around, this dried flower bouquet will do the trick.

It’s beautifully arranged and it will last for over a year.

9. Wine Glasses

Lingua Asia Crystal Wine Glasses Set on Etsy

More and more Koreans are into wine these days.

A high-quality set of crystal wine glasses will surely delight.

If you buy a bottle of wine on top of that, you’ll be the guest of honor.

10. Chopstick Set

Lingua Asia Etsy Bronzeware Cutlery Set

I personally like getting this gift for older people, like emo or samchon.

Metal chopsticks are a fundamental part of the Korean dining experience.

You can read more about Korean chopsticks here:

11. Air Freshener Plaster

Lingua Asia Air Freshener Plaster on Etsy

If you find candles or diffusers a bit boring, you can try an air freshener plaster!

They’re super cute, and versatile as they can decorate a house or a car with a nice scent.

12. Tabletop Fireplace

Lingua Asia Tabletop Fireplace on Etsy

Korea has a new trend of “spacing out in front of a fire (called 불멍 or bool-muhng)”. It’s soooo therapeutic, and almost hypnotizing!

You don’t have to go camping or have an expensive fireplace to experience this.

All you need is this bioethanol fireplace that can be used indoors or outdoors.

This gift is perfect, because Koreans want it, but don’t necessarily want to splurge on it themselves.

 

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Let us know your thoughts or questions about Korean housewarming gifts!

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