Must Have Apps for Traveling in Korea

1. Naver Maps and KakaoMaps

Ditch Google maps and use Naver Maps and KakaoMaps instead for the most accurate way to get around from bus times to driving directions your set.

 *hint* If you can’t find something, try searching using Hangul, the Korean alphabet.

2. The COOV app and for those here long term with an ARC KakaoTalk. 

Although the COOV app won’t necessarily require you to have a Korean phone number calling the contact tracing line EVERY place you walk into. KakaoTalk does not require you to have a Korean phone number, but to have full access to the app, you need one and your ARC for those staying long term. With a Korean phone number and your ARC, long term visa holders will be able to use the QR code check-in every place they go! (PS I hope this part of the post doesn’t age well, but for the near and distant future, this is important)

3. Naver

Just as ditching Google maps, you need to also ditch Google because Naver search engine is Queen, especially if you’re looking to go off the beaten path. 

 *hint* If you can’t find something, try searching using Hangul, the Korean alphabet.

4. Google Translate or Papago

Need I say more? Not everyone is Bilingual here. Yes, there will be more English speakers in the larger cities, but most people you interact with will only know Korean. Google Translate and Papago offer a way via typing, conversation and translations through photos to beable to comunicate everything you need to.

5. KorailTalk

Using the actual website from a computer is a lot easier because you can only tickets with a foreign card in person at the counter, and it struggles on iPhones. Still, I find it helpful to check times using KorailTalk and see if I need to stop at the station the day before because the train I want is close to filling up.

6. TX Bus aka Intercity Bus

This app is not the greatest. You can’t purchase tickets with a foreign card, but checking times and destinations is super helpful. It also acts funky on phones using foreign app stores. The most user-friendly way to check bus times is on their website or at the terminal.

7. KakaoTaxi 

This is really the only app where you can request a taxi, and for that, you will need to get a Korean sim card at the airport and download KakaoTalk and KakaoMaps for seamless use. 

I know this post is titled “Must Have Apps” yet most of them have a better user interface on the computer (not even your mobile search engine works well) but the truth is that apps here dont work as well as they should for travelers. They do however offer a way to double check transportation times to help quardinate your travel and I find them extramly useful for that. Also there is always hope that future updates will fix theses apps issues.

Explore With Me

Disclaimer I am not being paid by any of these companies northe Korean Board of Tourisum to promote any of these applications. This Blog is writen based of of my own personal experience with these aps and life in Korea. Use each of these apps at your own risk. The COOV APP and Covid regulations in Korea change on a daily basis. the best way to get upto date information is through calling imigration at your arival directly. Use these apps at your oen risk I am not responsible for what you do or what occures with them.

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