What’s Happened to
the North Korean
Traffic Officers?

North Korea Women Traffic Officers - Where did they go?

North Korean Women Traffic Officers: Background

North Korean women traffic officers have previously given image to Pyongyang.  

Notoriously famed for their beauty, it is said that Kim Jong Un hand picks these themselves. 

They are known to be situated in high traffic areas and crossings throughout Pyongyang and direct and control the city’s traffic.  The North Korean women traffic officers can also be found throughout the country, not just Pyongyang. 

Because of their difficult jobs that require immense concentration and a high amount of training, they hold a high social status in Pyongyang and throughout North Korea. 

Have a look at our video on North Korean women traffic officers to see them in action! 

However, in recent months, we have noticed a significant decline in the North Korean women traffic officers. This is especially so in central Pyongyang.

The North Korean traffic officers haven’t disappeared.
However, the North Korean women traffic officers – arguably the face of North Korean traffic officers – are noticeably less present. 

So, what happened to the North Korean women traffic officers? 

North Korean Women Traffic Officers: Now 

On a tour to North Korea, you will still see the North Korean traffic officers’ carefully choreographed traffic dances – but unfortunately, you will be lucky to see the North Korean women traffic officers. 

Last year, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un stated that for the benefit of the women, the North Korean women traffic officers would be taken off such hard duties and instead replaced by men. 

The job of a North Korean traffic officer is indeed no easy feat. Standing out in all kinds of weather conditions for long periods of time, but maintaining a good level of concentration and keeping the traffic order can be very strenuous work requiring lots of training and practice. 

Women in North Korea are often seen as those that should be celebrated and protected.
Because of this, Kim Jong Un ordered that the North Korean women traffic officers should work less, have less tough shifts in less condensed and difficult areas, and not work throughout the toughest months of the year (i.e. in the depths of summer and winter). 

So, if you are lucky, you may still get the odd chance of seeing North Korean women traffic officers around Pyongyang and other areas in North Korea. 

However, the days of the constant presence of the North Korean traffic lady standing at the corner to Kim Il Sung Square and the foreign language bookshop in central Pyongyang are unfortunately long gone. 

We have a limited edtion artwork on the traffic lady at Koryo Studio

Further Reading: 

North Korean Traffic Officers

Famous North Korean Women

International Women's Day in North Korea

north korean women traffic office r

Back to blog

[email protected] | + 86 10 6416 7544
WhatsApp (message only): +44 7822 014058
Room A409, Jucai Building. No. 76 Caoyuan Hutong.
Dongcheng District, Beijing, 100027, PR China

中国北京市东城区草园胡同76号聚才大厦A 座409 室,
Download contact card