Meetup yey

With an agenda to change the world, a social networking company has silently grown into one of the largest in the world. Their concept is really quite simple: To connect people online in order for them to meet offline.

Meetup started up in 2002 in NYC and has grown exponentially ever since. Scott Heiferman, the sites co-founder, said in an interview that he was inspired by the grand feeling of community that arose from the events of 9/11. The idea of creating real communities and connections by actively encouraging members of a group to interact in the real world, differs greatly from the general framework of social networking where members usually meet through forums and discussions online. An example of such a community is the largest Meetup group of them all, NYC Tech Meetup, established in 2004 by Heiferman and co-founder Dawn Barber . The non-profit organization invites prominent speakers of the tech community and hosts monthly events that works to promote and inspire the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation.

In 2012, Meetup reached over 100 million RSVPs and it has currently over 19 million members in 179 countries, with 3971 Meetup events occurring at this very moment. Despite these enormous numbers, Meetup has had very little of public display, apart from a few interviews and articles. This is due to their zero marketing principle, making it truly into a community known best by their members and their affiliates only.

There is a huge number of local Meetup groups in South Korea as well. Seoul alone boasts with a ton of local gatherings, from groups that works to arrange for grand events, parties and day-trips (usually with more than 5000 members), to smaller-sized communities that focus upon niche activities and hobbies like yoga classes, gaming, tennis, animals and even storytelling.

Therefore, wherever you are, there will always be some Meetups around. And if there is none that suits your particular interests, then you have a chance to create a community yourself!

This has all inspired our Events Team at SeoulSync to jump on the wave as well! Check us out at Meetup Korea here!

Finally, for the convenience of our readers, here is a list of three types of activities that are very popular among Meetup Korea members and their designated groups.


Language Exchanges and Networking:

People from a variety of countries and nationalities meet up in informal settings in order to exchange knowledge about their culture and language. This is also closely related to networking events in the same type of environment in which people meet, maybe share some professional information whilst having a good time. Here are a couple of active and well-organized groups:

  • Language Exchange Café  – A language exchange group that meets every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday in either Gangnam, Hongdae or Itaewon (on Sundays). One of the largest out there with over 7000 members, accessible to beginners and with a large range of languages; Japanese, Chinese, French, Korean, and Spanish just to mention a few.
  • AWESOME TALK International Cafe – Meets Tuesday-Sunday. You can learn a variety of languages; Spanish, French, and Korean each have their own designated day of the week.
  • KoreaNetwork – International Networking – A networking group that also arranges for lectures in various topics and workshops; Situated in Gangnam – “Ideafactory”.

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Parties:

Parties at Meetup are usually arranged for the foreign and international community, where they work to arrange for great festivities at popular locations:

Trips, Hangouts and Hiking Groups:

Traveling, exploring, and day-trips in Korea top the list of activities that expats and internationals, as well as Koreans, enjoy in this country. Having browsed through a large amount of these, some seem to have a very good reputation for organizing lots of activities:

  • The Seoul Hangout, Travel, and Hiking Group: A group that really does all kinds of different activities outdoors; going to festivals, mountain climbing, and hiking. With more than 622 past meetups, there’s no doubt about their organizational skills, and taking from the reviews, most events seems to provide participants with a great experience.
  • Indigo Hill – Hiking and Travel in Korea: A group that puts emphasis on Philosophy, Art, and Culture and tries to incorporate these elements into each trip. Certainly a group that works to inform their hikers, leaving them with something to remember after the trips, also organizes different levels of hiking according to each participant’s ability.
  • Seoul Hipsters – With a laid-back milieu, this group is all about doing something fun to get you off the couch at home. The activities that the group are involved in vary from casual hangouts, to trips to Busan, Incheon, or even volunteering.
  • Seoul Expat Group – A group for Expats, eager to explore all aspects of Korea. With more than 5000 members it certainly seems well-established and it organizes trips frequently.

Hope these will help you gain access to more fun activities to do whilst in Korea, and hope to see you soon in one of our events!


Photo Cred: Chelsea Marie HicksTodd Fong | Jirka Matousek | Meetup