A New Aging System Means South Koreans Are Younger Than Ever
Everyone wants to be younger, right? Or at the very least, we want to appear younger, because this getting older stuff isn’t for the faint of heart.
I’m surprised no one else has thought of just fixing the system, because in South Korea, thinking outside the box has just changed the game.
The issue is that they’ve been using the “Korean Age” system, in which a person is born one year old and then becomes a year older every year on January 1, regardless of your actual birthday.
If you’re not confused enough, there’s also a third system that has people subtracting the birth year from the current year, and this is what’s used to determine the legal age for drinking, smoking, and military service.
As of June 2023, neither alternative system be allowed on official paperwork, and documents will follow the same aging system used by most of the world.
Meaning that a majority of people will be at least one year younger than they are right now.
The decision, according to the government bill, is meant to standardize how age is calculated across the country in order to avoid bureaucratic nightmares and legal disputes.
“Due to such differences in age calculation and display methods, public confusion and legal disputes continue in the provision of administrative services and contracts, resulting in unnecessary social and economic costs, and problems that do not meet internationally accepted standards.”
At least one poll found that around 81% of South Koreans are in favor of leaving the more confusing system behind, despite the fact that age is an important part of their social hierarchy.
I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t mind being a year younger.
Every little bit helps.