Pre-Korea Planning 2-1: Incheon Airport – Mobile Phone Services & Transportation


Mobile Phone Guide

From what I have researched thus far, the mobile network in Korea seems to be ‘locked’ in a certain way. Such that, you are not able to use a korean sim card in a foreign phone, or a foreign sim card in a korean phone. (You could actually pay to unlock your foreign phone but from what I have read, it is an expensive and tedious process, so unless you are staying in Korea for long, it is not worth it.) Meaning, that if you plan to make local calls within Korea, it would be advisable to rent a mobile phone.

Inside Incheon airport, you can actually rent such phones at quite a reasonable price from various phone companies.

Rental charges: 2,700 to 3,000W per day.
Usage prices: 90W/10 seconds (domestic calls) 100W per SMS; free incoming calls
Estimated charge: 30 days usage with 100 mins and 200 SMS will cost 155,000W (114,500W with 50% discount on rental charges)

Well I guess it is still slightly expensive, but I guess you should rent one if you really need it. Otherwise, wifi spots are quite accessible in Seoul. You can keep in contact with your friends and family easily if you have a smart phone via applications like Whatsapp and Skype.
S roaming: Cheapest: 50% discount if book online, 3 days in advance.
(update on 4th June 2011) i just discovered that S roaming provides cheaper rates for foreign students!
It is only 50,000W for the rental of the phone (3 weeks to 1 year) and with discounted rates for usage! like 60W for SMS instead of 100W. I think i might just try this out when I am there!
Here is the link:

Actually I have not used any mobile services before, thus I am not able to advice on which company is better. I have no idea if the reception would be equally good for all companies. So, if you’re not too concern over price, you can just close your eyes and pick one.

Transportation from Airport

There are 3 choices to get out from the airport

#1 Taxi
Taxi Stands: Taxi stands are located on the arrival level (1F) at the passenger terminal between platform 4D and 8C.

ncheon International Airport basic taxi fee(by 2009 & can be changed due to later fare increase)
Section Basic Fee Platform Number Remarks
Standard Taxi  2,400 KRW (Incheon) 7C ㆍ24:00 ~ 04:00 additional 20% late night premium.
ㆍ100 KRW discount when paid through a Travel Card.
 2,300 KRW (Gyeonggi)
2,400 KRW (Gwang Myeong)
6D ㆍ24:00 ~ 04:00 additional 20% late night premium.
 2,400 KRW (Seoul) 6C ㆍ24:00 ~ 04:00 additional 20% late night premium.
ㆍReceipt issue and Translation is a basic service
Deluxe Taxi  4,500 KRW 8C ㆍReceipt issue and Translation is a basic service
ㆍNo late night premium fee.
ㆍCredit cards welcome.
Jumbo Taxi
(Up to 9 people)
 4,500 KRW 5C
 Flat fare by three zones
in Seoul only
4D ㆍFor foreign nationalities.
Location Estimated travel time
Estimated fare (KRW)
Standard Taxi Deluxe Taxi
Seoul Seoul City Hall 60 44,000 80,000
Jamsil Lotte World 75 55,000 90,000
Youngdeungpo Station 55 43,000 70,000
Gimpo Airport 40 34,000 52,000

#2 Airport Limosine (Bus)

Bus routes can be found here:

If I am going to Seoul National University (SNU)

  • Take Limousine Bus 6003 (6A, 12B: 1st Floor)
  • Fare: ₩9,000 (cash or ticket)
  • ☞ Incheon Airport → Seoul National University (last stop): 90 minutes ride

#3 A’REX Rail

Estimated Time: 43 mins for Express Train, 53 mins for Regular Train
   ※ between Incheon International Airport and Seoul Station

And the prices are really affordable!

Seoul Hongik Univ. Digital Media City Gimpo Airport Gyeyang Geomam Unseo Airport Cargo Terminal
3,700 KRW 3,600 KRW 3,500 KRW 3,300 KRW 2,900 KRW 2,300 KRW 900 KRW 900 KRW
Express Train to Seoul Station : 13,300 KRW
Getting to Airport Rail Station
   – Incheon International Airport Station is on the B1 floor in the Transportation Center.
Time Table (Geom): Geomam Station, (Di) : Digital Media City Station
Hour Express Regular
05 30        20, 32, 38, 44, 50, 55
06 00, 30      02, 09, 19, 25, 32, 39, 50
07 00, 30         05, 20, 33, 44, 53
08~20 00, 30         07, 20, 33, 44, 53
21 00, 30         07, 20, 33, 44, 57
22         09, 21, 33, 45, 57
23        09, 21, 33(Di), 45(Di)
24                00(Geom)

Step by step Arex Guide:

Seems like it is really more worth it to try the new arex rail which seems much cheaper than the bus or taxi. The difference between the express and regular train ride is only 10 mins but the prices differ by quite a lot. So I guess you could consider taking the regular one.

That’s all I have for mobile phone rental in Incheon airport and Transportation from Incheon airport to Seoul City.

Next Post will be on Accommodation in Seoul.

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