Korea, North

Travel Facts

US State Dept Travel Advisory

The US Department of State currently recommends US citizens DO NOT TRAVEL to North Korea due to the continuing serious risk of arrest and long-term detention of U.S. nationals. Exercise increased caution to North Korea due to the critical threat of wrongful detention. Consult its website via the link below for updates to travel advisories and statements on safety, security, local laws, and special circumstances in this country.


Passport/Visa Requirements

Individuals cannot use a US passport to travel to, in, or through North Korea without a special validation from the Department of State. Special validations are granted only in very limited circumstances.

US Embassy/Consulate

US citizens may call US Dept of State (202)-501-4444 for emergencies

Telephone Code


Local Emergency Phone

Local numbers only


See WHO recommendations



Temperate, with rainfall concentrated in summer; long, bitter winters

Currency (Code)

North Korean won (KPW)

Electricity/Voltage/Plug Type(s)

220 V / 50 Hz / plug types(s): C

Plug Type C

Major Languages


Major Religions

Traditionally Buddhist and Confucianist, some Christian and syncretic Chondogyo (Religion of the Heavenly Way)

Time Difference

UTC+9 (14 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time); note: on 5 May 2018, North Korea reverted to UTC+9, the same time zone as South Korea

Potable Water

Opt for bottled water

International Driving Permit


Road Driving Side


Tourist Destinations

Complex of Koguryo Tombs

Major Sports

Soccer, basketball

Cultural Practices

North Korean authorities carefully track and monitor foreign travelers in the country.

Tipping Guidelines

For an extended tour, guides expect 10-30 euros and drivers 10 euros per traveler.


Stamps and postcards, propaganda posters, obsolete currency, watch movements, panacea teas

Traditional Cuisine

Kimchi raengmyŏn — long, thin handmade noodles made from the flour and starch of various ingredients such as buckwheat, potatoes, sweet potatoes, arrowroot starch, or kudzu, and beef or poultry broth; typically served cold

Please visit the following links to find further information about your desired destination.

World Health Organization (WHO) - To learn what vaccines and health precautions to take while visiting your destination.

US State Dept Travel Information - Overall information about foreign travel for US citizens.

To obtain an international driving permit (IDP). Only two organizations in the US issue IDPs:
American Automobile Association (AAA) and American Automobile Touring Alliance (AATA)

How to get help in an emergency? 
Contact the nearest US embassy or consulate, or call one of these numbers:
from the US or Canada - 1-888-407-4747 or from Overseas - +1 202-501-4444

Page last updated: Wednesday, October 19, 2022