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Sunday, December 5th
90 Day Korean has been around since 2013 and is well-known for offering lots of free Korean lessons online through Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and their own blog, among other places. The creative team consists of both native Korean speakers and second-language learners who all live in Korea and are passionate about helping people learn the culture and the language.
You'll pay for a one-week trial
You can get a complimentary sample lesson via email if you give 90 Day Korean your email address. When we did that, it took a little while for the email to arrive; in the meanwhile, the 90 Day Korean site went to a page with an intro video by the company's founder - which, playing all the way through it, you'll find that it's offering you access to the Inner Circle course for a weeklong trial run. However, it's not free: you'll have to enter your credit card info and pay $1. That feels a little underhanded, compared with so many Korean language programs that let you try it out at no cost. (Adding to the sort of sleazy sales-pitchy feel, on the payment page for the one-week trial there's a flashing box asking if you want to pay $69 for a "professionally-chosen Korean name based on your personality, traits, and background" . Um, what?)
Watch the video to learn more
As we browsed the site and went to click to another tab, we got a pop-up asking if we wanted to take a look inside the member's area before we left the page. Yes, of course! If you get the same opportunity, take it. You'll be able to see a video demonstrating some of the primary features of 90 Day Korean, like the Inner Circle Course, Korean Gym, My Korean Coach, and My Community Forums.
Four 90-day modules of Korean lessons
Inner Circle is the bread-and-butter of this program. It's where you'll find all of your learning activities. Even though the course is broken down into four 90-day modules, you can study the Korean lessons as quickly or as slowly as you wish.
Use community forums to ask and answer questions
My Community Forums are what the name suggests: a place to interact with other students from around the world. Need a recommendation for a good Korean drama? A recipe for kimchi? A great Spotify playlist? You can probably track all of that down and much more here.
Get a language "workout"
Korean Gym offers shorter, theme-oriented courses that should only take you a day or less to finish. Here you can get brief lessons and activities like a "workout" - maybe you want a crash course on kitchen-related vocabulary or another specific topic. Head to this section if you just have a bit of time and are looking for a quick Korean lesson.
Work with a coach as a VIP
Finally, there's the My Korean Coach section. This is a premium feature only included with the VIP level of membership. You'll be assigned to a native speaker coach who will grade homework assignments and give you personal support on your Korean learning journey.
Spendy membership fees
What does it cost? You'll pay $35/month for the Standard course and $47/month for the VIP level. If you choose to pay for your membership on an annual basis instead of monthly, you'll pay $239 or $327, respectively. That's a savings of $181 on the Standard plan and $237 on the VIP plan.
More transparency, please
Our biggest frustration with 90 Day Korean is how little they show prospective students about how their paid course is taught. Yes, we eventually got a PDF via email with a 90-minute alphabet lesson and it was interesting and useful. But that doesn't tell us how the lessons are delivered through the dashboard: is it interactive? Is there a speech recognition component? We read through page after page of information about 90 Day Korean but never felt like they came out and told us how the lessons actually work - unless we paid the $1 for the one-week trial.
30-day refund policy
We appreciate that 90 Day Korean has a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. That means that even if you do the $1 trial and forget to cancel it before it rolls over into the $47/month plan, you've got time to get a refund.
Needs to be more forthcoming to move up in rankings
90 Day Korean is intriguing, but that's not enough to put them ahead of their rivals who make it much easier to see what they're all about. It's also quite a bit more expensive than most Korean lessons - and the ones that are priced similarly almost always give you full access on a trial basis without making you pay a dollar for it. We think that 90 Day Korean has the potential to jump up in our rankings, but the company will need to be more forthcoming about how their lessons work in order to get there.
The language is surging in popularity: just look at the number of K-Pop songs on Spotify and the K-dramas on your favorite TV streaming services and you'll see what we mean. Spoken by 72 million people in North and South Korea plus another 3 million throughout China, Japan and the US, Korean is anything but a dead language!
However, it's not easy to find somewhere to learn it. Sure, you could try and watch a familiar movie with the audio set to Korean, use Korean subtitles, or look for a dusty textbook somewhere, but that's probably not going to help you master the language in a meaningful way. And, unless you happen to have a Korean-speaking community or a university near you, in-person lessons aren't going to be an option either.
Lucky for you, there are lots of ways to get effective, affordable Korean lessons online. It doesn't matter if you're learning the language for travel, business, or just for fun: you'll have no shortage of options to get the type of instruction that's right for you. Do you want an app that can be used for bite-sized lessons on the go? Video clips with native speakers? Live lessons with your own private tutor? All of the above? You guessed it: there are Korean lessons that deliver in all of those ways.
How can you tell which Korean language program is your best fit? While some of that depends on you - how much time you have to study, your learning goals, your budget, and so on - there are several factors that you should look for as you decide which service to choose for Korean lessons:
To help you in your language studies, TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked the top options for Korean lessons today. We're confident that you'll have all of the information you need to find the right program for you!
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