Americans still want to go to North Korea despite Warmbier’s death

Americans still want to go to North Korea despite Warmbier's death 0
Americans still want to go to North Korea despite Warmbier's death 0

The Warmbier case did not extinguish the intention of American tourists to visit North Korea

Less than a week after being released by North Korean authorities in a coma, 22-year-old student Otto Warmbier died on June 19.

Currently, there are still at least four travel companies, including Uri Tours headquartered in New Jersey, USA;

‘Considerable value for money’

Americans still want to go to North Korea despite Warmbier's death

A couple riding bicycles in the capital Pyongyang.

These tour companies target a small number of adventurous travelers who want to explore remote lands for off-the-beaten-path experiences.

`A trip to North Korea will break every stereotype you’ve ever heard about this country,` according to Tom Bodkin, founder of Secret Compass.

Secret Compass led the first tourists to North Korea last fall on a 13-day tour of many locations in the capital Pyongyang such as Kim Il Sung Square, a subway system known as deep

`I’ve always been curious about North Korea, a place where very few people have ever set foot,` said Gautham Chandra, living in Fords town, New Jersey, USA, feeling motivated by the desire to explore `the most mysterious country in the world.`

`I have never seen such breath-takingly beautiful mountain ranges anywhere, the autumn scenery is amazing,` Chandra reminisced as he recalled the trip, which he said was `worth the money.`

`And the locals are friendly and hospitable,` Chandra commented.

Chandra is not the only person who has sympathy for the country and people of North Korea.

“Our customers find it thrilling to interact and feel connected to people whose life circumstances are completely different from their own,” Lee said. “Returning visitors often say that the experience (of going to Korea)

Be careful with risks

Americans still want to go to North Korea despite Warmbier's death

North Korean people eat ice cream in beautiful sunny weather.

Companies that take American tourists to North Korea are aware of the possible risks.

Lupine Travel, which has brought nearly 2,500 tourists into North Korea since 2008 without any unfortunate incidents, is also cautious.

`North Korea will often ignore minor mistakes of foreign tourists, the consequence is only a warning or deportation, as long as the tourist is not an American citizen. But if he is an American citizen, he is more likely to

American student Warmbier was sentenced by North Korea to 15 years of hard labor for removing a propaganda sign from a hotel in the capital Pyongyang.

John, an American banker living in Budapest, sympathized with Warmbier’s outburst, recalling a similar experience in North Korea during a 2014 trip. `I raised my camera to take pictures of the military parade

Still, John said North Korea still left a strong impression on him.

The US State Department warns that citizens traveling to North Korea will face `a high risk of being arrested and detained for long periods of time` and that `the law enforcement system of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea will impose

US authorities also emphasized that US citizens traveling `in groups with tour guides cannot avoid the risk of being detained by the North Korean government`.

`Tourists will always be monitored, electronic devices can be searched at any time. If you’re careful, don’t go there,` said Chris Berry, director of security consulting firm Kroll.

Republican Senator Bob Corker, chairman of the US Congressional Foreign Relations Committee, announced he is considering the possibility of banning US citizens from traveling to North Korea.

Despite warnings and clear lessons from Warmbier students, many Americans still do not give up the idea of setting foot in North Korea, not even once but twice.

`When I was there, I didn’t feel scared, I felt excited,` said an American who went to North Korea with Secret Compass. Although Warmbier’s death was a tragedy, he would `definitely` return to North Korea.

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