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August 2014

How to use the Korail App to book train tickets!

How to use the Korail App to book train tickets!

 

I’ve been procrastinating about making a video about this for so long that the app has updated in the process of me making it. However, a couple of weeks ago a few people on Facebook were having problems with using the application so I decided to make a “how-to” video. The Korail App is one of the “must-haves” for people living in Korea. I downloaded it and learned how to use it 2 years ago when my Korean was still very basic. However, over time I’ve just become very accustomed to using it as it is 100 times easier than booking online or going directly to a station. Since I’ve pretty much covered the basics in my video, I am going to focus on tips in this blog post.

 

Tip#1: You need to have a Korail ID and password in order to use the application. To get one you need to go to a larger station and sign up at their customer service. You can also use a friends account and type in your own debit card information separately without any problems.

 

Tip#2:

If you type in a departure and arrival station, and click 조회 but get a error pop-up that says “직통열차는 없지만, 환승으로 조회 가능합니다” means that there is not direct train to your destination but you can transfer if you would like. An example of this would be going from Seoul station to Sinchang at the end of Line 1. You can any train other than the KTX from Seoul station to Sinchang. If you try to take a KTX the results will not come up. There are almost always trains from one large city to another, however it can be more difficult in you are arriving at or departing a station in a smaller city. You can go back to the main page:

Screenshot_2014-08-22-19-19-47

click on the first option 여정 and change 직통 to 환승 and you will be give a different route with at least 1 transfer. I don’t like to do this. I generally take train direct. Sometimes this means taking the subway to a larger station in the area and going from there. Most cities have larger train stations within a 20 minute subway ride.

 

Tip#3:

KTX trains can only be taken from one KTX station to another KTX station. All of the KTX stations are designated as such on the subway line map. So you cannot take a KTX train from a small station because that station does not support them.

 

Tip#4:

You do not have to use the “select a seat” option. You can skip over it an hit 예약 if you want however if you are traveling with friends and want to sit together but don’t want to leave it up to chance you can simply select 좌석선택 and choosing a cluster of seats that way.

Screenshot_2014-08-22-19-24-19

 

Tip#5:

Before finalizing your reservation you can use any accumulated points towards your reservation buy click 포인트 조회 on the page below and select how much you would like to allocated to your ticket. I’ve gotten enough points for 1 free ticket in the 2 years I’ve been using the app but I don’t travel by train often either.

Screenshot_2014-08-22-19-24-54

 

Tip#6:

When typing in your payment information you need to type it in in the following order.

1. A domestic Korean credit/debit card number. (I’ve never tried using foreign cards with this)

2. The expiration date of that card month and then year.

3. The first two numbers of your debit pin. So if your card pin is 1234 then you need to type in 12.

4. Make sure the following always has 일반 selected.

5. Type in the first 7 digits on your ARC card. This is your birthday. Year/month/day

6. Make sure the final selection says 일시볼 which means a one time payment. In Korea you can break into payments if the cost is more than 50,000 I believe.

 

Tip#7:

When trying to refund one of many purchased tickets, it is possible to delete the incorrect one if you are not paying attention. Tickets are assigned based on car number, and seat number. See below:

Screenshot_2014-08-22-19-25-52

This ticket is assigned to car number 7 and seat number 40. You can see this below on the refund page.

Screenshot_2014-08-22-19-26-28

07-40 means car 7 seat 40. So if I have purchased numerous tickets but want to get rid of this one, all I have to do is select it and click “refund” and it will delete only this one and not the other tickets I may have purchased in the app. Also note that refunds usually cost a “fee”. It is designated as 수수료 in Korean. Because I deleted this example ticket soon after buying it, I was not charged a fee. However, the fee is usually determined based on how soon or late you cancel. In the past I’ve paid 400-800 won to cancel a ticket however there should be a number listed there if you ever decide to cancel. I also believe that you cannot delete a ticket if you’ve missed a train or want to cancel very close to the departure time. Then you would have to visit the ticket window for assistance.

 

Thank you for reading. I hope this helped you out. If there is anything that I did not cover or any other questions you might have you can reply here, visit me on Facebook or leave a comment on my Youtube channel.

 

–Charm

 

 

 

 

 

 

Taking a Taxi in Korea

Taking a Taxi in Korea

So I know it has been a ridiculously LONG time since I’ve posted a Bit of Korean video. Sorry about that. So let’s get started.

This time I wanted to go over some phrases for how to take a taxi in Korean. I’ve heard foreigners use some phrases that are not very common, and over time I’ve picked up the correct ones from taxi drivers.

1. “Please go ____________”

_____ 가 주세요.

So, for example if you want to say, “Please take me to E-mart”, you would get into the taxi and then say 이마트 가 주세요.

2. “Please go left/right”

왼쪽/ 오른쪽 가 주세요.

As you know, in Korea you don’t always have to give exact addresses. You can give a general area and then once you get to that area, use right and left to direct the taxi driver to your destination.

3. “Please go straight.”

직진 가 주세요.

This phrase is useful because many drivers will think you don’t know where you are going or start to slow down when they need to go a few more streets up before turning.

4. “Please stop here.”

여기 세워 주세요.

I’ve heard many foreigners used different methods of stopping a taxi and whatever gets the job done works, however the correct format is listed above. The driver will stop the car as soon as you say this.

You really don’t need any more than these four easy phrases in order to take a taxi easily in South Korea. However, I’ve picked up a few more tips after taking taxis a lot in Korea. For example:

Tip #1: Always know where you are going 

Even if you are just visiting a city, it is always best to know where you are going. The reason for this is so that you are not taken on a wild goose chase that runs up the meter. You would be surprised how a taxi driver will go out of his way to get a few extra hundred won.

Tip #2: Try not to use full addresses to places. 

This tells the taxi driver that you have no idea where you are going so this also contributes to fares being run up much higher than they need to be. Also, most Koreans don’t know exact addresses to places, but they do know landmarks. It could be an apartment complex, mountain, train station etc. But it’s best to have a landmark rather than the full address to a place unless it’s obscure.

Tip #3: Estimate your fare before getting in the taxi.

I word recommend downloading the Naver Map app and using it to estimate your taxi fare. I’ve never had this app estimate incorrectly. All you need to do is type in place of departure and arrival and it will estimate the time and taxi fare. So if you notice your fare is much higher than it should be, say something to the driver right then and there. I will be uploading a video soon on how to estimate taxi fares using the Naver Map application.

Tip #4: Always pay in cash or ask for a receipt.

I very rarely use my debit card to pay a taxi fare but when I do, I always make sure to take a receipt with me. The reason is because taxi drivers can and will overcharge you if they think you don’t know any better. So when you’ve swiped your card say 영수증 주세요 or “Please give me the receipt”.

Thanks for reading. Please expect more Bit of Korean blogs in the near future.

—Charm

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