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Before you arrive in korea, this below is some helpful.

Subway

Subway service is available in Seoul, Busan, Daegu and Incheon.

Because the Seoul and Busan subways are linked with main government offices, cultural assets, shopping centers, bus terminals and the airport, foreign tourists can use them conveniently.

Since in both subways each line has a unique color and information is announced both in Korean and in English, even those who are visiting Korea for the first time can easily use the subway. When using the Seoul subway in particular, you can easily recognize transfer stations when you hear the birdcall on lines 1~4 and classical music on lines 5~8 when the transfer station is announced.

As of February 2001, the subway runs from 06:00 to 23:30 and the subway fare is normally 600won for one section in the downtown area. Extra charges are added depending on the section covered from downtown to the suburbs or from suburb to suburb.

If you use the subway often, you can receive a 10% bonus ticket (students 20%) when using prepaid subway tickets (10,000 won/20,000 won). You can also purchase transportation cards (passes that charge 550won for 1 section) which can be used for both the bus and the subway.

 

Taxi

There are three types of taxis in Korea: General - the most common, Best Deluxe - full service and Call Taxis.

General Taxi

General taxis, usually gray in color, are available not only at taxi stops but also at streets with a simple gesture. An available taxi can be distinguished by the red light at the front or by the cap lamp on the top. These features make it easy to find an available taxi at night.

Some taxis with "FREE INTERPRETATION" signs provide on-line phone interpretation service. However, knowing some basic Korean or area information ahead of time will make your trip more convenient.

The basic fare is currently 1,600 won (Jan 2002). After midnight, an additional 20% of the total fare is charged. The fare from Kimpo Airport to downtown Seoul is around 20,000 won and from Kimpo to Jamsil is about 25,000 won.  

Best Deluxe Taxi

Black taxi with yellow caps are called Best Deluxe Taxi. They provide various convenient services including free car phones. Credit card payment is also available, and they will give you a receipt. You are able to find these taxis at general taxi stops. Best deluxe taxi is easily found at airports, main hotels, express bus terminals.

As with general taxi, some best deluxe taxi with "FREE INTERPRETATION" signs on their rear window provide on-line phone interpretation service. Drivers of taxis with a "Visitors Guide English (Japanese)" sign provide you direct interpretation.

The basic fare is currently 3,000 won (Feb 2001). Unlike the general taxis, best deluxe taxis do not charge you extra fare after midnight. The fare from Kimpo Airport to downtown of Seoul is approximately 30,000 won and from Kimpo to Jamsil is about 40,000 won.  

Call Taxi

You can call a taxi directly to wherever you are by making a simple phonecall. One advantage of this is that you can arrange for a taxi with interpretation service if you do not speak any Korean at all.

When you wish to call an interpretation available taxi, call 82-2-3431-5100.

A certain amount of money will be charged when you call a taxi. It varies by taxi company, so check on this before making arrangements.

 

 


Trains

There are three kinds of trains in Korea: Saemaeul, Mugunghwa and Tongil.

Saemaeul, the fastest, is an express train equipped with a dining car and provides services of the highest quality including a wireless public phone and an area for using a notebook computer.

Mugunghwa is probably the most appropriate train service for travelers. Mugunghwa not only has the greatest number of lines connecting city to city but also offers reasonable prices and frequent operation compared to Saemaeul. There is also Tongil, which runs between small train stations in quiet country villages. If you want to see in person the backgrounds of serene Korean movies and soap operas, then taking this train is a great way to do it.

The departure station depends on the destination. Generally you can use Cheongryangri Station when leaving Seoul for the northern areas of Gyeonggi-do, Gangreung or Chuncheon, and you can use Seoul Station or Yeongdeungpo Station to reach the southern areas of Gyeonggi-do, Daejeon, Busan or Gwangju. It is possible to reserve train tickets by phone or by the internet. Fares may vary depending on the distance. The first train normally leaves between 06:00 and 07:00 and the final train arrives at the destination before 24:00.

In Korea, taking a train is a good choice for a business trips or long-distance trips because the train is rarely delayed except in special circumstances like natural disasters or accidents.

A KR PASS allows foreigners who visit Korea to use the train freely or to receive a discount during a fixed period. This pass is convenient for those who have to travel many times from city to city during a fixed period (3, 5, 7 and 10 days).

 

 


Rent A Car

Rental cars can give you freedom on a trip, however driving can be difficult for foreigners who have not yet experienced driving in Korea.

The traffic system is very complicated. In most roads in the city the speed limit is 60 kph. In intercity highways like the Olympics Highway, the limit is 80 kph. If you are inexperienced at driving in Korea, we recommend renting a car with a chauffeur.

Usually, it costs 50,000~70,000 won per day to rent a small car, 70,000~90,000 won for a mid-sized car, 120,000~270,000 for a deluxe car and 90,000~100,000 for a van . There will be an additional fee of 5,000~10,000 won per hour when using a chauffeur.

Make sure you check out the insurance status of the car you rent. We also recommend that you determine ahead of time the location of the gas station nearest your destination or the place you are staying. You can reserve a rental car on-line with most rental car shops in Korea.

To rent a car, you will need your international driver's license, your ID or passport and your national driver's license.

Copyright 2002 Seoul Housing Realty Consulting. All rights reserved.
Tel : 82-2-749-7111 / Fax : 82-2-749-9711 / E-mail : rent@seoulestate.com