South Korea Will Scrap Indoor Mask Mandate from Jan 30

In an effort to adapt to life with Covid, South Korea will no longer need masks to be worn in most indoor venues from January 30 onwards.

A statement from the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said that while the requirement to wear masks indoors would be lifted as of the end of January, mask wearing remained strongly encouraged. Nursing homes, hospitals, and public transportation are all listed as places where masks will still be necessary. 

Based on the country’s fatality rate and the number of critically ill patients, authorities have concluded that the current Covid wave has reached its peak. The government estimates that about 98.6% of Koreans are antibodies to the virus, and they have taken steps to minimize the spread of the disease among Chinese tourists, so the current outbreak there won’t have much of an effect.

South Korea had already ended its outside mask regulation in September 2022, but had remained cautious about indoor activities due to a virus comeback during the winter.