business

S Korean office workers hit convenience stores as 'lunch-flation' bites

16 Comments
By Jihoon Lee

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16 Comments
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But in South Korea, lunchtime has been regarded sacred among office workers, who often mingle with friends and colleagues for longer than the allotted hour at busy diners.

Korean flouting of the 'rules' is one key to their present success vs Japan.

They still suffer from neo-liberal late stage capitalism, but adapt and create in innovative ways.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

Prices of Everything is going up except salaries.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Korean flouting of the 'rules' is one key to their present success vs Japan.

From my experience working in South Korea, disrespect for the rules is more like a selfish coping mechanism.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

disrespect for the rules is more like a selfish coping mechanism.

disrrspect for the rules when coping with oppression is no sin.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

$7 for a lunch buffet is cheap, cheap, cheap. A sandwich, chips and a drink from a 7-Eleven usually costs more than that, at least in the US. Asian buffets in the US are $11-$14 per person and for us bellying up to a buffet is reserved for special occasions. Even at $14 an Asian buffet is usually cheaper than fast food.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

If you have time pack your own lunch and retire early. In the US recently I sometimes picked up lunch such as a sandwich or salad at a supermarket and ate at a park.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

$7 for a lunch buffet is cheap, cheap, cheap

The buffet went up by ₩9000 ($7), which was a 10% rise. Very pricey lunch buffet.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@ Desert Tortoise - reading again, you were spot on, my mistake. $7 is a steal! Wish i could partake!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Is this really a newsworthy item????

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I have not been to Korea, but if it's anything like Japanese konbini food it's not the absolute worst you can have, especially compared to the trash sold by US-american or European convenience outlets. But it's also not really good food on a regular basis.

If it's in any way possible to fit it into our day, I still prefer the bento I or the okusan prepare ourselves, for quality and ... speed. You'd think preparing your own lunch takes more time, but the trip to a konbini still takes some time, and I've spent too many times waiting in line in a konbini during the lunch rush to confidently say that at the end of the day it's a wash.

And it's cheaper. Much cheaper. Not only can we empty the fridge and/or use leftovers from the previous day. Even if we were to get ingredients just for bento, for $7 a day ($14 for two people making $70 a workweek ... that's 1万円!) we can cook like kings.

I wonder if "lunch-flation" will have home cooking come back as the next big thing.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@samuraivunyl

Yes it is. There needs to be more stories about prices going up while wages are staying the same or going lower. People need to get angry about it for something to happen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I find Korean food has a lot of fiber.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

This is nothing new. I don’t know how people can afford restaurants everyday for lunch anyway. People complain they have no money but buy Starbucks everyday.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Swapping one problem for another. Less restaurant clientele, would lead to laying staff off, buying less ingredients would affect suppliers, the worse case scenario, closure.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Desert Tortoise I agree try buying a "HAPPY MEAL" at McDonald's one would become unhappy quick you can easily spend of $15 and that is a kids meal!!

$7 for a lunch buffet is cheap, cheap, cheap. A sandwich, chips and a drink from a 7-Eleven usually costs more than that, at least in the US. Asian buffets in the US are $11-$14 per person and for us bellying up to a buffet is reserved for special occasions. Even at $14 an Asian buffet is usually cheaper than fast food

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I recently returned from a business trip to the USA and found all restaurant and food prices staggeringly higher than on previous trips. And the high prices are disguised by failing to include the substantial sales tax or value-added tax, as well as the server's gratuity, which together add another 25% to the listed price.

We are fortunate to be in Japan where food prices have not increased so dramatically.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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