So last February, I went back to Seoul for the second time. The first time was to train Taekwondo for a few weeks, so I was pretty excited to be finally able to go out and have an amusing time. These are just some things I learnt that I think would help anyone traveling to Seoul in the future.
- GET A WIFI EGG. These days we can’t live two hours without the Internet. But have no fear, you can pick up a “wifi egg” at the airport as you arrive. These little babies are cheap as chips, about $5 for unlimited downloads, and can have multiple connections. My friends and I split one between three, so it became a real bargain and it never failed us once! Simply return it to the airport on your way out and you’re done! One little warning as far as Internet goes: GoogleMaps doesn’t really work in Korea, they tend to not use google.
- If you don’t want to waste time getting lost on the subway, just take a taxi. The orange taxis are always affordable and you can get from one side of the city to the other for as little as $10US. Just make sure it’s one of the orange ones; the others run on a different price system. The only trouble with taxis that I had was they don’t go the opposite direction to where they’re already going. In Australia, a taxi driver will happily make a U turn to get more money. In Korea, you have to cross the road yourself. First world problems, geez!
- DON’T TIP. There’s no need to tip and, as in some cultures, it can be considered rude.
- RICE IS FREE. So there’s a condition to this. Most Korean BBQ places will give you free rice and vegetable refills. Buy your meat, eat it, then fill up on rice and kimchi. Don’t feel the need to buy an after dinner snack at the convenience store; you’re just spending more money.
- SHOP IN MARKETS. The reason I say this is because the department stores are usually no cheaper than back home, and you can haggle the price down at a market. If you’re traveling on a budget, then this can save you a lot of money. Just have a look around first so you know exactly what you want, then talk the price down as best you can. Generally, you can get between 25-70% off.
And there you have it; those are my five tips for Seoul. You should be able to save both time and money with these. Hope that’s been helpful. If you have any other tips or questions, leave it in the comments!