Filipino Discrimination in Korea

Filipino Discrimination in Korea exists! Here are some stories from Filipinos who mentioned that they have negative experiences with Koreans.

It’s not always rainbows, butterflies, and kimchis in Korea. Most of the Filipinos have a dream of working abroad to experience greener pastures. As much as I enjoy living in Korea, there are other Filipinos who experience discrimination here.

I posted a question in a facebook group called FILIPINOS IN SOUTH KOREA.

“Naranasan niyo na po ba madiscriminate dito sa Korea dahil Pinoy kayo?”

Did you experience being discriminated in Korea because you’re a Filipino?

I got a lot of answers and compiled them here:

  1. Some taxi drivers prefer taking a Korean passenger than a Filipino. Even if the Filipino is the first one to call the taxi!
  2. Most dark skinned Filipinos receive glares. In fact, when I was walking with a Filipina friend in the subway, a Korean walked with us and yelled “Africa!”
  3. Most of the public and private schools avoid hiring Filipino teachers because of their accent. They would always prefer Americans without any college degree than a professional Filipino teacher.
  4. Some Filipinos are not entertained when buying gadgets. The vendors would often say that it’s expensive.
  5. In some companies, supervisors don’t mind when a Korean makes mistakes. But when a Filipino does, they would hear some curse expressions like Shibal
  6. Most of them don’t mind Westerners speaking aloud in the subway trains but some people stop the Filipinos when they are speaking in Filipino language.
  7. Some Filipinos are treated differently because some Koreans think that they are from the land of killers.

Personally, I’ve never felt discriminated here. Other members of the group also said that they haven’t experienced discrimination in Korea. I believe that just because it didn’t happen to me doesn’t mean it’s not happening to other Filipinos. My question in the group became a long thread of discussion. What are your thoughts about this?


  1. Been there last feb 2017 and thank God I didn’t experience discrimination. And as you said, because it didnt happen to us doesnt mean it is not happening to our kababayans. I love korea but I guess we are too blind to see this situations. I hope they treat as equal.

  2. I guess every country has it “Discrimination”. I just hope that it won’t spread out more because of what happened to some Korean nationals living here.

  3. I was in korea last november. We actually felt well received. Everybody was nice. We were greeted on streets even while we walk. When does this discrimination started? Just after a korean citizen was killed due to operation tokhang or is this happening long before that? We are planning to be back at korea this year, now you got me think twice. ????

    1. It’s been going on for a long time. I think OFW’s experience it more than the tourists. I think that issue is also a factor. Don’t worry, that doesn’t happen all the time. I’ve been traveling a lot and I haven’t experienced those yet.

  4. I think every country/nation is or has been somehow involved in a form of discrimination. Although I agree with Audrey: I never expected to hear this about Korea.

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