Many South Koreans will soon be one or even two years younger: the parliament in Seoul passed laws on Thursday to abolish the traditional method of age calculation.

According to the so-called Korean age, a baby is already one year old at birth, and on every January 1st – and not on the birthday – one year is added. But there are two other calculation methods in South Korea: For example, to determine the legal drinking age, babies are counted as zero years old at birth, and on every January 1st they become one year older.

Since the 1960s, some authorities have also been using the international standard, which is based on the date of birth. This means that a person born on December 31, 1992 in South Korea would be 29 on December 9, 2022 according to the International Standard, 30 according to the Alcohol Consumption System, and 31 according to the Korean Age. This “confusion” should now be over by June 2023 at the latest, as the parliament announced.

Then only the international system should apply. The amendment to the law will make 50 million people at least one year younger in one fell swoop. For some, it even means a rejuvenation – at least on paper – by a full two years.

The Asian counting system originally came from China and was also used in other Asian countries. South Korea is now the only country where it is still used. President Yoon Suk-yeol had long been in favor of the change, pointing out the high administrative costs, among other things.

Some South Koreans are excited. “I’m turning two years younger – I’m so happy,” wrote one Twitter user. “I was two years old shortly after I was born because I was born in December. I’m finally getting my real age back!”