BACKGROUND: Smoking is the single most important factor for the prevention of diseases and the promotion of health. The objectives of this study are to compare the health related quality of life and other factors between the adult male smokers and nonsmokers. METHODS: Study subjects were selected from the parents of students of three schools; one elementary school, one middle school, and one high school in Suwon city, Kyungki Do. Among 2,308 respondents to the questionnaire, 1,127 were analyzed. The questionnaire consisted of questions of general socioeconomic status, health related quality of life questionnaire, Fagerstrom nicotine tolerance questionnaire, and the Why test. RESULTS: There were no significant socioeconomic differences between the smokers and nonsmokers except religion(p=0.000). The smoking rate of the subjects was 66.2%, the average amount of smoking was 18.28 cigarettes per day, and the mean nicotine dependence score was 3.99+/-2.33. Smokers ranked lower scores in all scales of the health related quality of life than nonsmokers. The health related quality of life of the group of high nicotine dependence was low in comparison with the group of low nicotine dependence. The most common reason of smoking was to relieve tension. CONCLUSION: Smokers ranked lower scores in all scales of the health related quality of life than nonsmokers.