The BELTA blog has a new URL location




YOU can check out The BELTA blog at its new online location


It’s quite similar, the only difference is, if I’ve dropped the extension in the URL. THAT’S IT… nothing drastic 🙂

o, and now you can join a forum / community chat to inquire, discuss, and learn about the various aspects pertaining to living and teaching abroad right from people who have done just that.


See you over there! And tell a friend and a stranger too :)D


Personalized Skype Chats about moving to and living in South Korea



Update: Bookmark and visit the new online location for this blog


EPIK Teachers – What to pack suggestions

packingtipsNow since I’m half way through my year AND have felt what the extreme heat and below freezing weather that South Korea can bring, I feel best equipped to give advice on this topic now than ever before.

The lists of course vary due to your specific intake because during the year you can always 1. have someone send you stuff for the next season, 2. go home during your break to switch items out.

Spring Intake (You come in February & March):

Jeans x3;

Shirts x6 or 7;

Sweatshirts/Hoodies x 2 or 3;

a jacket (not coat – you wont need that until October / November)

Socks, undies, bras (at least 5)

Shorts, skirts, dresses, lounge shorts (like basketball shorts), work out clothes. 

A swimsuit / trunks or shorts (mudfest friendly)

TONS OF DEODORANT (You’re coming when the weather is about to change back to warm/HOT and your body hasn’t adjusted to the climate over here. Koreans dont sweat, they just dont. You WILL be the sweaty foreigner. But you DONT want to be the sweaty foreigner who stinks too!)

Any toilettrees you use back home. Some of them you can get here but you will pay triple the price. (PADS, PADS, TAMPONS, TAMPONS)

SNACKS & SEASONINGS... o I wish I knew this before hand…

*The emphasis you may think is important on work clothes is NON existent, at least for me and ALOT of the people I know teaching here. We all wear jeans, I wear sweats to work because its easy, comfortable and those are mainly the only thing I can find that fit and are decently long enough. Dont fill your bag with heels, dress shoes and business clothes. PLEASE DONT DO IT.


Fall intake (You come in August and September)

Note: It will be hot when you get here but please take note that it WILL NOT LAST

Jeans, thermal tops, long sleeve shirts


Tights / Leggings

A coat or TWO!

Beanies, Hoodies, Sweater, Scarves, gloves, thermals, under armour (do you see where I’m going…?)

The thickest socks you’ve never seen, Uggs, insulated boots, more socks, your thickest pair of sneakers


Again, once you have winter break that is when the transition into the warmer more human friendly months will emerge and then your items can begin to swap but just be prepared that coming here for the Fall semester is nothing nice in terms of weather. If you have anemia, etc, please be extra prepared in keeping yourself warm. Odds are you may have a case where they wont turn the heater on inside the cement walled buildings until December although it was below freezing back in October. IT HAPPENS!

Many people once settled in and they paycheck starts rolling in, order from They ship to korea and FAST. You can use code IVO319 for $10 off of your first order.

What to pack for naturals video coming soon…

Quick message for EPIK/GEPIK intake teachers for Spring 2013

First, let me say Congrats! I remember last year this time I was just beginning my research about the programs across the world. I came across EPIK and all the perks and then decided to work with KORVIA as my recruiter which was a great decision, so either if you did directly or through a recruiter, I KNOW the relief you feel now that your locations are starting to roll in.

Of course there are the common concerns of what to pack, what kind of apartment you COULD get, what grade level you will get and I am only equipped to really help you answer ONE of those questions, but my message to you is this…

Now I understand quite a few of you are probably in your early 20’s which traveling to South Korea to LIVE for a year seems like an awesome 12-month spring break that you can’t wait to begin but regardless of your age, something in the following can definitely speak to some part of you.

Spending time in Korea to teach will at times SUCK not be what you expected. Depending on your city, your location (yes they are 2 different things), your grade level, your school(s), your co-teacher(s), your principal, your vice-principal, the cafeteria food, having your students stare at you when you talk or completely check out all together, your inability to find out when your camp really starts so you can book your trips, your neighbors, your students, your support system, your clothes when winter hits, your frustration that you can tutor on the side to make more money, and I can go on and on with more, trust me. HOWEVER, there are massive amounts of positives that will come from this experience in your life. I say to you, be as open as you think you can and once you think you’ve reached that point, open up more. My personal testimony includes giving up eating meat, learning myself for who I really am, tapping into my spiritual self and embracing solitude to be a better person for the people in my life, when back in August 2012 I thought I was just coming here to teach. And also, take the time now, while you have it, to spend actual, physical time with your family and friends. Some days while you’re out here, being away from your loved ones will get to you and you will think back on those days wishing you hadn’t been so consumed about preparing, packing and leaving. The time will come before you know it. Don’t rush it!

But again, congratulations on the next 12 you are about to experience and I wish you much success and personal growth. And who knows, our paths may meet this year… Catch me at Mud Fest. I know you’ll be there too 😉

(What to pack post coming soon…)

My EPIK apartment in Donghae, Gangwon-do, South Korea



WE’VE MOVED!!! Check out The BELTA blog at its new online location…