The question that has been asked to us here at YPT at the end of 2020, 2021, 2022 and now 2023 – will North Korea open in 2024? We are excited to announce that yes, it’s most likely that it will reopen for tourism in April 2024. Although under what terms the North Koreans are not sure of yet.
Why the sudden update? While nothing official has been announced there are discussions amongst NGOs, travel operators and most importantly the North Korean diplomatic community that suggest this is the case.
The latest outcome as of today is that April 2024 is looking to be the most likely opening period, something we here at YPT have stated for almost a year now.
To read about more when North Korea might reopen click here.
What new information is there?
Since the start of 2023, North Korea was completely closed but we have seen positive movement in the right direction of them reopening.
Within the last few months Air Koryo have resumed regular weekly flights to Beijing and Shenyang in China, and Vladivostok in Russia. These flights have resumed to allow North Koreans that have been abroad since the DPRK’s closure during the pandemic, to finally return home to their friends and family.
There have also been numerous delegates from China and Russia that have been allowed to enter North Korea for political discussions. However, there has been no further updates on when foreigners which includes diplomats, NGOs and tourists will be allowed to re-enter the country.
The good news is though, that North Koreans themselves based in China and elsewhere have been mentioning April 2024 to us for several months now.
Will North Korea open in 2024?
Barring extremely unforeseen circumstances, such as another pandemic, which should not be underplayed as North Korea was the very first country in the world to close their borders in January 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thus, now being the very last country in the world to reopen.
Why April 2024? This works out in best timing for namely two reasons. 1) it’s spring and the weather is much warmer thus less likely for viruses to spread and 2) the first ruler of North Korea, and the eternal President Kim Il Sung’s birthday falls on April 15th which is an important occasion for the country which usually attracts the most international attention.
Will there be restrictions on travel to North Korea in 2024?
No body can directly confirm at this stage, but most likely there will be, whether that is related to how many people can come into the country, quotas, or even whether Chinese guests for example are allowed into the country first. These are all yet to be seen.
So, this obviously leads to the question of can you book a tour to North Korea in 2024? As things stand the answer to that is no, but we thoroughly expect that to a yes very soon.