Below are answers to some common questions we receive from guests. Please do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with more questions.
How do I sign up for a tour?
For steps on how to sign up for a tour, please visit Steps to Book a Tour
How can I travel to the DPRK?
All of our tours start and include Rason, DPRK, and there are several ways to get there. The most popular way is by road from Yanji, China. Guests can fly to Yanji (airport code: YNJ), which has an airport connecting to every major city in China and also to Incheon International Airport in South Korea. Guests can also arrive in Yanji via bus or train from other locations in China. The other option is for guests to take the train to Rason from Russia. Guests can board a train in Khasan, Russia travel and travel to the DPRK via the Friendship railroad bridge connecting the two countries.
Why should I travel to the DPRK?
Guests visit the DPRK for a number of reasons, from simple curiosity to long-term engagement desires. Whatever your reason may be, we have no doubt in the power of engagement for both those who visit and also for locals here. After many years of bringing in visitors and being a part of many people’s first DPRK experience, we are firm believers that visiting the DPRK and actually interacting directly with the people will prove to be worthwhile and paradigm-shifting. Our past guests have remarked that the trip for them was incredible, helping to break down past misconceptions and fears.
How much do tours cost?
Our tours are priced very competitively relative to other DPRK tours, and we do so intentionally because we believe in the power of engagement and of offering people a chance to explore and experience the country. Our service tours are focused on volunteerism and are priced accordingly, with less of an emphasis on the absolute bottom line. Our independent tours range in prices and are generally more affordable as your stay gets longer and as your group gets larger.
What is the water and electricity situation at the hotels?
Hotels provide reliable water throughout the day for guests during their stay. For drinking water, we recommend that guests purchase bottled water available at low price. Electricity is also normally available at hotels, but occasionally guests may face temporary outages during their tour. Hotels are equipped with electric generators and so outages are usually short-lived. Electricity may also be unavailable during the day, which is normally not an issue since guests are not in the hotel during the day.
What is the food like?
Guests will be served breakfast, lunch, and dinner during their stay in the DPRK, and most meals will be at the hotel and at restaurants in the city. Meals typically include an abundance of delicious Korean dishes that provide guests with more than enough food. Guests also visit our headquarters and enjoy a meal prepared by our in-house staff.
Is it legal to visit the DPRK?
Yes, it is legal for most people to visit the DPRK. Outside of South Korean passport holders, journalists, and other professional media personnel, we can bring in almost everyone else as tourists, including U.S. citizens as there is no restriction on travel to the DPRK by either the U.S. or the DPRK.
Who can travel to the DPRK?
At this time, unfortunately, we are not able to accommodate South Korean passport holders, journalists, or professional media personnel. Outside of those categories, we can bring in all others, including U.S. citizens and even expats living in South Korea. Guests under 18 will need permission from a guardian to join one of our tours.
Can ethnic Koreans travel to the DPRK?
Ethnic Koreans with a non-South Korean passport are more than welcome to visit the DPRK. We have several ethnic Koreans on staff as well.
Are kids welcome on tours?
Certainly! In fact, we believe children are the ultimate ice-breakers. Locals love meeting children from other countries and it’s not uncommon for children to be the center of attention for locals wherever they travel. We have hosted many families with children of all ages.
Do I need a Chinese visa?
Most guests will need at least a double or multiple entry visa for their DPRK tour; please check with the Chinese consulate in your home country to confirm. There are many visa agencies specializing in Chinese visas that can greatly simplify the process for you for a small fee.
How long does it take the process a visa to visit the DPRK?
For visas to travel to any part of the DPRK, including Rason, Chongjin or Pyongyang, we typically ask guests for a minimum of 30 days to process their visa applications. Sometimes we’re able to process visas on shorter notice so please contact us for more information. Krahun takes care of all DPRK visas needs on behalf of our guests.
What currency is accepted in the DPRK?
The currency of choice in Rason is Chinese RMB. In Pyongyang, Euros, Chinese RMB, and US Dollars can be used and so guests are encouraged to bring small amounts for miscellaneous expenses, though Euros are sometimes preferred in Pyongyang. Please note that there are no ATMs for foreigners in the country.
Is it safe to travel to the DPRK?
We understand apprehensions people may have of visiting, but in our experience the country is very safe for tourists. Crime rates are extremely low in the DPRK and even safer for foreign tour guests. We have brought in countless visitors to the country since 1999 and we have never had an issue or incident in our history. The few public instances of foreigners getting detained in North Korea have happened when they have either entered illegally or have committed what is considered a crime in the DPRK. When you travel with Krahun, you are entering the country as a legal tourist and as long as you respect their rules, you will have no problems whatsoever.
Prior to each tour, we hold thorough orientations for all tour guests where we go over the simple dos and don’ts of your time in the country. We also have deep relationships with the tourism bureau and the tour guides who work hard to make sure all our guests have a great experience and stay out of harm’s way. And with a permanent presence in the country, we remain nearby throughout the tour to make sure all tours are going well. With local staff and local cell phones and cars, we are able to take care of any issue almost immediately. Because we live inside the country, we take safety and security very seriously for all our guests; it’s our home, as well.
What’s included in tours?
The price for our tours includes the following:
- DPRK visa fee and processing (Krahun will handle all DPRK visa processing)
- China customs fee and bridge transportation
- Round-trip transportation from Yanji, China and DPRK via private van
- Hotel accommodation throughout time in DPRK
- 3 meals per day in DPRK
- All transportation in DPRK
- English speaking DPRK tour guides and DPRK driver
- Customary tips for your DPRK tour guides and driver
- De-brief meal after your tour
Our tour prices do not include the following:
- China visa fee and processing
- Travel expenses to and from Yanji, China
- Spending money for extra drinks & snacks, souvenirs, and optional activities
- Transportation, meals, and accommodation in China
- Travel/medical/evacuation insurance (recommended but not required)
We offer optional help with transportation and accommodations in Yanji, China.
Do you offer any discounts?
We offer the following discounts:
- Children 1 year old and under are only charged the visa fee of $50
- Children 2-12 years of age receive a 15% discount
- Independent Tours during the winter – November through March – receive a 5% discount
Can I take pictures and videos during my trip?
Guests are free to take pictures and videos during their trip in most locations with a few guidelines to follow. These guidelines are covered during our orientation and your local DPRK tour guides will also let you know when guests can and cannot take pictures and videos. Pictures and videos are normally examined at the border as you leave the country, but guests are always able to leave with significant amount of excellent photos and videos.
Can we talk to local people?
Guests are certainly allowed to talk to local North Koreans and locals can talk to guests when the opportunity arises. As with any destination in the world, depending on people’s personalities, some individuals are more open to talking and interacting with strangers – the same is certainly true of local North Koreans. Our tour itineraries include several stops that give tour guests a chance to interact directly with locals, such as a visit to the foreign language middle school where guests can have conversations in English with students. We also organize special tours that offer guests even greater levels of authentic interactions with locals unavailable elsewhere – these include each of our service tours where guests work and interact with locals.
Is there internet or phone access in the DPRK?
Unfortunately, internet or phone access is not available for tour guests in the DPRK outside of Pyongyang. With that said, in Rason, the company has both internet and phone capabilities that we can use on your behalf in cases of emergencies. In Pyongyang, tourists have both internet and phone options where guests are able to rent local SIM cards for telephone use. Contact us for more information.
Can I bring electronics such as cell phones, tablets and laptops?
Though internet access is not available, guests are allowed to bring in electronics such as cell phones and tablets; we ask guests to leave laptop computers at home or at our China office for the duration of the trip in the DPRK. Devices with GPS capabilities are not allowed as well.
What if I get sick in the DPRK?
Rason has a foreign hospital that can handle and respond to low-level issues that may arise during your tour. For more serious issues, guests can be evacuated easily by car to China for more medical attention. Though not required, guests are encouraged to purchase travel insurance to cover their tour.
Is there a dress code?
There is no dress code in the DPRK, but modest attire is recommended as North Koreans tend to dress on the more conservative side. For guests also traveling to Pyongyang, some tour stops require formal wear, meaning dress shirt, tie and slacks for men and business formal or business casual wear for women.