Getting Around South Korea

  • Inside the Arex train
    Inside the Arex train
    by shavy
  • Arex train inside the airport
    Arex train inside the airport
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  • Vending or reload machine
    Vending or reload machine
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Most Viewed Transportation in South Korea

  • paulvir's Profile Photo

    Seoul City Tour

    by paulvir Updated Aug 13, 2010

    I highly recommend Seoul City Tour Bus for getting around Seoul to see the popular tourist sites. If you have 1 or 2 full days to spend in Seoul, you should definitely take advantage of Seoul City Tour Bus. Getting around Seoul using the subway can be a bit of challenge for the uninitiated foreigners, so the City Tour Bus is the best choice for getting to tourist destinations in Seoul.

    Closed on Mondays

    Cost and how to get ticket: 6,000 KWN to 12,000 KWN for a one-day pass depending on the course. Teens and younger get discounts. I took the bus with the City Circulation Course all-day pass which cost 10,000 KWN. If you are paying with a Credit Card, you MUST purchase the ticket at the Seoul City Tour Bus Ticketbox, which is at Gwanghwamun Station only. If you are paying with cash or T-Money card (South Korean mass transit card), you can purchase it on the bus when you first board. I strongly recommend just paying with cash on the bus so that you can start the Seoul City Tour bus from anywhere. The City Tour Bus stops at some of the hotels also.

    Condition of Bus: Bus is equipped with good AC system which was great during the hot June I was there. At each seat you will find a headphone. Using the headphone you can hear short introductions to the destinations the bus will stop at.

    What to expect on bus: Each bus has a driver (obviously) and a female guide who sells tickets (if you didn't buy one already) and announces the next stop. As the guide announces the stop, she also announces when the following buses will be arriving at that stop. She would say (both in English and Japanese) something like the next buses will be arriving at 25 min and 55 min of the hour. That means a bus will be coming at 25th min and 55th min of every hour at the stop you are about to get off. They do that in order to help the tourists time their stay at a particular attraction. I was on 2 different buses (different driver and guide) and the guides all spoke conversational English and Japanese. I would recommend sitting on the right side of the bus so you can look down into the sidewalks.

    Picking destinations: There are lots of stops you can check out using the City Tour Bus. If you need help with picking where to stop, go to | http://en.seoulcitybus.com | CYBER TOUR | GO Cyber Tour. In the pop up window, go to Courses. At bottom of the pop up window, you will see a list of stops. Click on one and you will see a small window that will show a small picture and short info. Click on Details, highlighted in the attached photo. Now you will see a detailed info of that particular stop. Go through the stops and pick ones you want to visit. It's really useful and efficient way to pick destinations that you want to check out.

    Courses (2 day and 2 night):
    There are 4 different courses with different times and buses. The bus will only stop if a tourist is waiting at a stop to board or a passenger has indicated he/she would like to get off at the next stop. The guide will announce next stop and ask if anyone will be getting off at next stop.
    1. City Circulation Course has 26 stops. I actually think just riding around the city on this bus might be a thing to do if you are tired of walking.
    2. CheongGye/Palace Course is a condensed version of City Circulation Course with 13 stops at better known tourist destinations such as the Korean Palaces and the CheongGyeChun (CheongGye Stream). The Korean War Memorial is NOT included in this course, unfortunately.
    3. 1-story Bus Night course
    4. 2-story Bus Night course. I believe this 2-story night course is non-stop tour and doesn't stop at any destination.

    Seoul City Tour Bus Ticketbox Audio guide
    Related to:
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    • Study Abroad

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  • FridgeMagnet's Profile Photo

    Korail

    by FridgeMagnet Updated Apr 4, 2010

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    I took the high speed KTX train from Seoul to Busan. Efficient and comfortable with reasonable prices. It travels at speeds of up to 300 kph. You can book on their website up to two months in advance. Don't worry if your credit card is not charged straight away. They don't charge until you actually collect the tickets. Just bring your web receipt to a rail station once you are in Korea to collect them.

    Related to:
    • Trains

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  • Mr.Sparkle's Profile Photo

    Travel, the Korail way!

    by Mr.Sparkle Written Jan 4, 2010

    You can book your train tix in advanced online and in English. Helpful if you going to be traveling during a holiday. what's more, you see schedules and prices. Very helpful even if your not going to make a booking.

    one word of warning, the site does not function correctly with Mozilla. I had to use IE to make my booking. I actually had to d/l a something from the website to get it to work.

    All in all, it made my transport around the country hassle free.

    As for price and travel time, you can't beat the KTX. I highly recommend using it.

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  • Arial_27's Profile Photo

    KTX (Korea Train -eXpress)

    by Arial_27 Written Jan 3, 2010

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    KTX is South Korea's high-speed railway system, which many find it a convenient and affordable way of traveling around Korea. Its slightly cheaper to take buses, but for longer distances (such as Busan to Seoul or vice versa) it may be worth it to save time by taking the train. You can reserve tickets online, or by going in person to any given train station. The cost of a 1 way ticket from Seoul to Busan is about $50 USD, and a return ticket is around $100. The trains go to many other cities, such as Daegu and Incheon.

    To find out where the train stations are near you, you can check the link below - it's the official site for KTX and can be viewed in Korean or English. Click on "booking" and then "book online" in order to check routes, timetables and prices.

    Related to:
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    • Backpacking

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  • DSwede's Profile Photo

    Driving in South Korea yes/no

    by DSwede Updated Jan 3, 2010

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I've owned a car in Korea for over three years now. While I feel perfectly comfortable on the roads here, I will offer a few words of advice.

    First ask yourself if you have ever driven in a foreign country. Korea has similar rules to the West, but there are a few idiosyncrasies to them. However, having rules and following them are two different issues. Korean roads are not as safe as western countries and may take some time to getting used to the natural ebb and flow of the traffic and their disregard for certain laws (red lights, pedestrians, turning from middle lanes, etc. come to mind first).

    I have driven in all corners of Korea and try to avoid driving in Seoul. It is a zoo of streets and if you are not familiar with them, it is nearly impossible to drive safely and navigate at the same time. Street signs are extremely difficult for foreigners to use since the naming schemes and directional postings are either difficult to read or counter intuitive for westerners.

    I do drive in Daegu and Busan too, but again that's only because I know these cities and can drive by landmarks rather easily there.

    If all you are doing is visiting these main cities, then I would highly recommend staying on a bus/train. The rental cost of a car here is expensive ($60/day plus expensive fuel prices!), so you can easily afford a few taxis and walk away with savings. Taxi's are relatively cheap. And particularly in Seoul, the metro is by far the best since it gets you everywhere and the maps are always available in English.

    If you want to venture out of the cities and tour the country, I would rent a car for only those days you plan to be out of the urban areas.

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  • IreneMcKay's Profile Photo

    Buses in Pusan

    by IreneMcKay Written Oct 31, 2009

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    Buses were easy to use. Pay the driver on entry. We paid a flat rate of 1000won per person per trip. No idea if this is correct. It was the price of our first journey and we just stuck to it. We were never asked for more or given change so assume it was OK. Subway stations will indicate where bus stops are located. One strange thing was the front of the buses indicated the stop they were arriving at rather than the destination, so it helps if you know the number and destination in advance.

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  • IreneMcKay's Profile Photo

    Getting around Pusan

    by IreneMcKay Written Oct 31, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The subway in Pusan is very user friendly. The ticket machines have an English language option. A day ticket cost 3,500 won. Stations are sign posted in English. There are 3 subway lines and interchanging is easy and straight forward. Download a map off the internet before you go and you cannot go wrong. Exits list sights and bus routes in English.

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  • bryankang's Profile Photo

    From Incheon airport to Pusan city

    by bryankang Written Aug 29, 2009

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Hi

    if you are to get to Pusan city from Incheon airport, I suggest you these options

    1.International Tax ( www.intltaxi.co,kr )
    it cost you about 450,000won ( 1USD = 1,300won )
    you can contact directly to +82-1644-2255
    driver understand English, card accepted, 9-seater large taxi available.
    Desk located between Exit8 and Exit9 in Arrival Lobby

    2.Limousine bus + Taxi
    Take a limousinebus on 20:30 at 1st Floor 10C platform
    it cost you 40,900won, takes 5hours
    Then from Pusan take a taxi to Commodore it takes 50mins, cost you around
    20,000won

    Hope you can enjoy Korea!

    Related to:
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    • Business Travel
    • Disabilities

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  • hopang's Profile Photo

    By Subway in Seoul

    by hopang Updated Apr 7, 2009

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    Seoul Metropolitan Subway is one of the most convenient and most advanced rapid transit systems in the world. It is operated by several different organisations. Lines 1 to 4 are operated by Seoul Metro and lines 4 to 8 are operated by Seoul Metropolitan Rapid Transit Corporation.

    There are a total of more than 260 subway stations covering a total track length of approximately 290 kilometers. The subway serves not only Seoul City but also Incheon and other provinces near Seoul City. Seoul Metropolitan Subway was established and opened to the public in August 1974. It is also one of the most heavily used rapid transit systems in the world. The cost of a ticket for an adult is 1,000 won for the first 10 kilometers and half price for a child.

    Map of Seoul subway
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  • hindu1936's Profile Photo

    Subway from Incheon Airport

    by hindu1936 Written Jan 13, 2009

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    Last year, the extension of # 1 line opened. If you arrive at Incheon and have only a few bags, instead of taking a bus or taxi, jump onto the subway. It is faster, cheaper and there is no hassle or risk of being swindled. Swindling is the common practice of the call vans and taxis. If you arrive early enough and do have several large bags, use the limo buses. I always arrive at 9:10 pm, and the last bus home is already 40 minutes down the road. I have to take a call van because I always have several bags. Advice. If you must use a call van (these are the operators who pounce on you as soon as they see you heading for the door with several bags) then negotiate for at least 30% less than their first offer. From the airport to Cheonan 130,000 won. To Seoul-70,000 won. To Suwon, 60,000 won. Upon arrival at your home or hotel the driver will try to get you to pay extra, citing his toll gate costs, etc. Stick to your agreed upon price. Get your bags out of the van before paying. Never give in.

    Related to:
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  • hindu1936's Profile Photo

    Airport limos

    by hindu1936 Updated Jan 11, 2009

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    When you arrive at Incheon Int'l, if you are not met by someone and leave the arrival area you will get about half your nose out the door before 7 million cab drivers, call-vans, and people whose brother owns a car beseeching you to take their transport. They will quote some ridiculous price. Ignore them and go to the kiosk. Tell the person you want a ticket to whatever city you are going to. Ask the sign number. If you are lucky, the person speaks enough English to tell you. If not, then just go from one of the several numbered signs to the next, looking for your city. The names of the cities are written fairly large. When you find the sign with your city, look at the time of the buses. Stand by that sign until the bus comes. Load your luggage underneath. get on. relax. the bus is only going to one place. Alternatively, if you are traveling light, and are going to Seoul, Suwon, or Cheonan, use the Incheon subway. (EEnChon yohk) which now runs from the airport to Seoul. From Seoul you can change lines to just about anywhere. Once on the subway, you can go anywhere in Seoul or the surrounding area for as many as 80 kilometers for 1-2 bucks. Get a free subway map. Cabs are cheap. Make sure the meter is running.

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  • hanspeter_W.'s Profile Photo

    jeju island tour

    by hanspeter_W. Written Oct 18, 2008

    the best travel tour in south korea you can do is a guided tour by yenatour. very valuable tour what you can see..excellent organized..very good guide who speaks very good english..what is not happen at most other tours in Korea
    you can do either west island tour or east west island tour
    we had a fantastic guide in Sonya Kang

    infront of openm airmuseum in jeju with our guide sangumburi crater Seopjikoji view from Seongsan Ilchulbong(Sunrise Peak) jeju travel group

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  • Seoul Taxi Cabs

    by markcwilkinson Written Jul 20, 2008

    OK, I'm not the first person to be ripped off & I won't be the last.
    My first time in South Korea & a seemingly nice man at the Seoul Incheon Airport offers to take me to my Hotel which - as far as I was concerned - could of been miles away.
    Cue quite a long journey & a 50000 WON (about 50 Bucks) fee, only for my work mate to tell me he got a bus for 7000 WON & only a 5 minute journey to the same hotel.
    My advice - check at the information desk in arrivals about buses (limo's as they call them) since many Hotels have their own services for a fraction of the cost.
    Don't trust anybody offering to help you out since South Korea is about ripping off ex-pat's who are new to the area.

    Related to:
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    • Study Abroad
    • Family Travel

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  • Edith49's Profile Photo

    Backroads

    by Edith49 Written Feb 7, 2008

    On my last trip, my son had purchased a motor scooter and we were able to do more exploring on our own and travel on some backroads. I found this extremely interesting. We were able to travel up into the mountains and into small villages and farms. Scooters are not allowed on the main highways and they only go about 40 mph, but oh the freedom. They are not stopped by traffic jams - just drive on the sidewalk!

    Rice shoots ready to plant Narrow backroad
    Related to:
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    • Road Trip
    • Seniors

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  • Edith49's Profile Photo

    Korean Bus System

    by Edith49 Updated Feb 7, 2008

    My son does not have a car so we traveled everywhere by bus. The Korean bus system is very good. We had no trouble getting to any place we wanted to go - the connections are easy and the buses run frequently. There are plenty of signs and schedules are listed at the ticket counters. We only got on the wrong bus once. The buses are very comfortable and depending on the length of the trip, stop at rest stops where you can use the rest rooms or grab a bite to eat or a drink. To me the fares seemed quite inexpensive; I don't remember exact amounts, but they seemed ridiculously low to me.

    Within the city the buses are good also, although of a much different calibre. And in Seoul we mostly rode the subway to get around (see next tip).

    This is a city bus in Jeonju
    Related to:
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    • Arts and Culture
    • Budget Travel

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