The easiest way to travel Busan to Seoul and Vice Versa
DISCLAIMER: FARES ARE UPDATED AND BASED ON KORAIL OFFICIAL SITE
It’s actually our Day 6 but for the most part, we spend it by traveling and wandering one station to another. So instead of the usual daily travelogue I decided to do a full review about the 2 main station in South Korea and of course a comprehensive guide about the famous KTX Express.
After several days of pure fun and adventure, it is finally time to bid farewell to dynamic Busan. From our hotel, we flagged a taxi directly to Busan Station. I suggest that if you want to save some won you can take the subway nevertheless due to our heavy luggage it seems appropriate and more convenient to hail a cab.
Busan Station (부산역)
From Haeundae Area to Busan Station it will take you approximately about 30-45 minutes by Subway and around 15-20 minutes by Taxi. If you’re traveling in group, you can simply chip in and still save some won but if you’re really on a tight budget and don’t mind lugging your suitcase around then taking the subway is your best way to go.
As per reading, Busan station has been opened way back 1908. The recent modification was made last 2004 which includes the most important link of Busan and Seoul—the KTX, which enables passenger to reach any of these two big city in a matter of 3 hours. It is somehow synonymous to the renown bullet train of Japan. This station is a big terminus with several tracks and establishment. At the time of visit it was clean, well maintained and had everything a passenger needs—convenience store, shops, restaurants and a lot more. See the photos below for your reference.
Official Website www.letskorail.com
Contact Number: +82-1544-7788, +82-1588-7788
Address: 206, Jungang-daero, Dong-gu, Busan
HOW TO GET HERE?
By Train Alight at Busan Station Line 1
For regular rail tickets, you can book and buy several ways in advance or on the spot, through online via their official site or purchase anytime at the ticketing counter and or by using any electronic ticketing machine available in the station. For booking online visit their official site here and always check for the train schedule before buying. If you’re familiar with Eurail or JR pass they also offer this kind of train pass and they call it KR pass for visitors who wanted to experience Korea by trains.
|Divison||FARE IN KRW|
|1st Class||Standard Class||Standing / Not assigned|
KTX or Korean Train eXpress is South Korea’s high-speed rail system, operated by Korail. The construction inaugurated as early as 1992 but it opens historically on April 2004 and operates from that day forward from Incheon International Airport with stops at Seoul Station and Yongsan Station towards Busan and Gwangju. It runs from 190 mph to as much as 217 mph. Aside from the regular single-bound ticket you can opt to try the KR pass which is kinda similar to JR Pass of Japan in terms of usage but quite cheaper compared to it.
There are two (2) types of passes, the Korail Pass which is for travelers staying for a few days and the Happy pass for the foreigners whose staying for more than 6 months.
|KR Pass Type||Normal||Saver
|Flexible 2-Day Pass||102,000||51,000||91,000||81,000|
|Flexible 4-Day Pass||154,000||77,000||138,000||123,000|
UNDERSTANDING KR PASS
Consecutive Day Pass : 1 day pass, 3 day pass, 5 day pass and 7 day pass
If you go to Busan from Seoul on February 8 with 5-day pass, it will be valid 8-12 of February.
Flexible Day Pass : flexible 2 day pass and flexible 4 day pass
If you go to Busan from Seoul on January 8 with flexible 4 day pass, you remain 3 more times to use. The travel date can be chosen as you like but remember it should be used within 10 days from the start date (between January 9-17).
KR PASS Access
- High-Speed trains : KTX, KTX-Sancheon
- Conventional trains : ITX-Saemaeul, Saemaeul, Mugunhwa, Nuriro, ITX-Cheongchun
- Tourist trains : O-train, V-train, S-train, DMZ-train, A-train, Westgold-train
Extra fees will be charged for the first-class seats.
Invalid for METRO Service
- A child aged under 4 may travel free with each fare-paying guardian aged over 12.
- Children aged between 4 and 12 will be charged 50 percent of the adult fare.
- Normal Pass : for adults and children
- Saver Pass : for groups of 2 to 5 people traveling on the same itinerary.
- Youth Pass : for youths aged between 13 and 25 or anyone holding an International Student Identification Card (ISIC)
- Flexible pass: 2 or 4 days within valid 10 days
- All KR Pass is not calculated by 24 hours, but on a day basis.
Do I Need KR Pass?
Actually it depends on your itinerary, like us we only need to buy single-bound ticket that costed us around 59,600 KRW per person since we’re only using KTX once but if you’ll be using it for several times then the KR pass will save you heaps.
How To Purchase?
I’ll be doing a detailed post about booking and redeeming KR PASS soon as we want to try it but for now these are the basic steps to know.
- Reserve KR Pass through online booking and through designated travel agency- Can be purchased by credit card only.
- When you arrive in Korea, You need to present your passport used in booking at KTX/Travel Center and get your pass.
Our KTX Experience
Since we scheduled our time efficiently we didn’t waste any nor wait that long and move on with our KTX Experience. It was so surreal considering that I’ve never ride this kind of speedy train before. My husband and I are really excited since we adore trains. We hit the road with big smile upon our face. *_*
Enjoy the photos as much as I enjoy documenting it.
Although the KTX do not have restaurant or dining options on-board you can buy packed meals called Dosirak. You can buy the pre-packed meals from the attendant with the rolling food cart similar to airplane’s food cart rolled by Stewardess. You can also buy stuff at the terminal and bring it with you aboard.
Aside from the packed lunches—a variety of light snack and beverages including coffee, refreshing sodas and water are available. Passengers will also find vending machines that sell more drinks in the areas between the cars.
Seoul Station (서울역)
Seoul Station was quite bigger than Busan Station but it still has the same feels to it. It even have Lotte Department store inside.
Official Website www.letskorail.com
Contact Number: +82-2-1544-7788, +82-2-1588-7788
Address: 405, Hangang-daero, Yongsan-gu, Seoul
HOW TO GET HERE?
By Subway Seoul Station (Subway Line 1, 4, Gyeongui Line & Airport Railroad)
By Bus Airport Bus: 6001 Green Bus: 1711, 7011, 7013A, 7013B, 7016 Blue Bus: 104, 100, 150, 151, 162, 202, 500, 504, 750A Red Bus: 8100, 9401, 1005-1, 5000, 5005, 5007, 5500-1, 5500-2, 7000, 9000
Overall it was quite an experience, for travel junkie like us this is purely fun. I considered the stations as well as the train as destination itself because of the experience you get from using it. You can also peek into a life of Korean Locals, live like them and immerse for a short period of time. Hoping this entry helps you in a way and comment if you have anything in mind. Happy Travels!
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