10 non-obvious councils for those who are going to South Korea
South Korea — A country at which it is rather difficult to travel independently without knowing the Korean language and understanding of the mentality of local residents. These non-obvious advice will help avoid stressful situations and enjoy this exotic trip for Russians.
Despite the picturesque nature, unusual architecture and preserved traditions, South Korea does not apply to popular tourist destinations. The network you can meet many descriptions of popular city attractions. Morning freshness, obvious advice and personal emotions of Travel Blogers.
But no one writes that Korea is not at all like “Spotted” Asian countries and the solution of any simple question here can turn around the problem, causing severe stress. Independent travelers should prepare in advance for the trip that will be filled “Effects of surprise”.
Several tips will help to quickly navigate in Korea and get a maximum of positive emotions from a trip.
There are a lot of interesting places in Korea, and if we competently make a plan of the trip and responsibly approach the choice of housing, they can be seen in two or three weeks. Do not book a hotel in one Seoul and radially leave to other cities – standing in many hours of traffic jams and the passage of complex road junctions will make a trip tedious both by public transport and by car. It is much more convenient to pave a circular route around the country and book several hotels in different cities. To save power and time, it is worth knowing the following:
- housing on the outskirts of large cities is cheaper than in the center, but transportation costs will cover the difference in price;
- In Seoul, it is better to live in areas of Jongno or Jung – here are the main attractions of the city and the tourist infrastructure is best developed;
- In Busan, it is the most convenient way of all hotels in the vicinity of the Central Railway Station (Busan Station) – it is easily accessible to any sights of the city;
- In small cities, like Sokcho, Andon or Köndju, it is better not to choose a hotel near the sights located outside the cities (Sabsan Park, Hahwe village, Pulguks Temple, and T.D.), and settle in the center.
AutoConstructions are less limited in the choice of housing, but you should always count on the expected time of the path from one city to another with the traffic jams.
2. Currency exchange
Almost in all stores, cafes and ticket office for payment are accepted by debit and credit cards Visa and MasterCard. However, without cash in Korea, it is not necessary to do: both in the tickets in the subway, and in buses, and even when buying a tourist passage can not be paid by the card.
Since the ruble rate to Korean is more stable than to the dollar, it is more profitable to remove cash in ATMs of large banks: “KB”, “Woori Bank”, “KeB”, “IBK” and etc., and not to change dollars on national currency in exchanger. ATMs work around the clock, you can switch the menu language everywhere into English. The Commission is usually 3600 won, regardless of the amount of removal.
In ATMs located at the metro stations, the Commission is much higher, so it is better to make money in advance in other places.
3. Public transport
In Seoul, as in many large developed cities, you can buy a tourist travel M-Pass, which allows you to take up to 20 trips per day on the subway, buses and express from the airport. The passage is sold in the area of arrival of the Incheon Airport (Outputs No. 5 and No. 10), at the Central Railway Station, Seoul (EXIT number 10) and in the tourist information center in the Möndon quarter.
With M-Pass, bought at Jeju Airport, you can ride public transport not only in the capital, but also on the largest island of the country. The validity period of such a pass – from 1 to 7 days, cost – from 15,000 to 64500 VOH, respectively. Used travel can be returned and get 4500 won. But that M-Pass paid off, you need to make at least ten trips a day. City Pass cards are also sold in Seoul and Busan, which includes public transport, visit a large number of attractions and discounts in stores.
Cheaper and more profitable to buy a T-Money card (sold in round-the-clock supermarkets for 4000 won), replenish it and pay both in public transport and in some stores throughout the country. Return T-Money and get back 4000 won can not.
In all other cases, travel must pay each time counting cash and collecting.
4. Transport applications
To move on public transport along Korean cities and between them, you need to use several applications at once:
- CityMapper (works only in Seoul)
The first three applications show the routes of ground urban transport, and Maps.ME best displays the metro lines and builds optimal hiking routes.
The Google Maps application in South Korea works incorrectly, but in the mobile version of this service you can find a schedule of intercity buses and prices with prices.
5. Mobile and Internet
Problems with free Wi-Fi in large cities of Korea will not arise: if it does not work off to the open network on the street, you can always go to “Starbax” or “McDonalds”. Access points have and near all popular attractions, even if it is a Buddhist temple, located in removal from the city. And, of course, in Korea, it is difficult to find an accommodation object without high-speed Wi-Fi. But those who need to be online in 24/7 mode, will have to buy a local SIM card with unlimited Internet.
In the shopping quarters, Tontemun and Möndon, there is a huge selection of SIM cards with different tariff plans, but to choose the best, it is better to apply not to the seller-consultant, but in advance to collect information from Russian-speaking residents of Korea (labor migrants, ethnic Koreans and T. D.). It is more convenient to ask questions in the community “Anonymous Korea” In the social network VK: people will be happy to share current information.
6. Proper shoes
Mountains occupy 70% of the country, and for all cities, one way or another is characterized by hilly terrain. Walking around the city can turn into unplanned hayking at any time, which means that trekking boots or sports sneakers are perfect for traveling for Korea. Such shoes wear the Koreans themselves who love to walk on national parks.
“Civile” Shoes, emphasizing the status, solvency and sense of style, only those tourists who are going to visit exhibitions, fashion shows or film festivals, as well as those who do not have rest in another country without expensive clubs and restaurants in Korea.
7. Interaction with Koreans
If in European cities, many situations can be solved intuitively, then in Korea, where everything obeys completely different laws of logic, independent tourists will have to seek help from local residents. Not everyone responds – This is due to the peculiarities of their mentality. Trying to establish contact with the elderly Koreans useless: they do not know English and very arrogant in relation to those who are much younger than them.
But men and women in business costumes, which are driving coffee from “Starbax”, Almost always perfectly own the language of interethnic communication and will be happy to understand the subway and buy a ticket, they will show the road to the bus station, they will bring down to stop, will translate text from Korean to English and perform many other requests of a confused foreigner. Ask for help need politely, without hysterics, but saying goodbye to the helpful Korean, worship him.
The most unsafe, what is in South Korea – domestic dogs. In major cities, the hosts walk them on leashes, but in the villages and small towns that attract independent tourists with authenticity and identity, dogs are freely walking through the territory of private houses. It is worth being on a quiet street in the Korean village, as the cozy courtyard will run out of the spins and show who the owner here. They feel unfamiliar smell and perceive a curious foreigner as a threat. Pass past the house dogs will not give – can bite. In travelers who were in such a situation, there are two options:
- turn around and run in the opposite direction;
- hide from dogs backpack and call the owner – he will drive animals into the house and gives.
If you stand and do nothing, in the hope that the dogs get tired of barking and leave themselves, a great risk to be in the hospital with bite. And if you cause physical damages, the problems with the police are inevitable. To protect yourself, it is better to ride the non-core places on a motorcycle or car.
nine. Hygiene products
The topic of female hygiene still remains a taboo in many countries of the world, including in South Korea – here women are shy of the characteristics of their body. In recent years, the situation has changed for the better, but the usual gaskets, tampons and menstrual bowls in Korean stores and pharmacies.
Disposable hygienic pads, firstly, stand several times more expensive than in Russia and other CIS countries, and secondly, they do not cope with their task. If you do not change them every 2 hours, “unpleasant situation” Guaranteed. Koreanki most often use reusable fabric pads that for most European women is unacceptable.
That is why travelers are better to take proven means of intimate hygiene to the South Korea. If necessary, gasket can be bought in stores “Olive Young”, In 24-hour supermarkets and automata near the toilets in the subway or major shopping centers.
Everything else can easily be found in stores, and the shampoo and shower gel is in any object of placement. But it is worth keeping in mind that Korean shampoos are not always suitable for European hair.
ten. Food at the airport
Everyone is used to that in the network cafes and restaurants located in the departure area at airports, a huge markup for all menu items. To have a snack waiting for the flight and at the same time save, many travelers take to manual sting different "Food garbage". Do not do this in Korea, because prices in network cafes and restaurants in the departure zone of the International Airport Incheon will pleasantly surprise: they are the same as in the city. And instead of filling the manual sting chips and cookies, it is better to take a full lunch or coffee with a cheesecake at the airport. Here you can buy food and water on the road.