Saturday, December 24, 2011

2011 November: South Korea: Korea Pass

Surprise Event for Travelers to Korea!

Korea Tourism Organization is giving away 3,000 Korea Pass cards on a first-come, first-served basis to international visitors arriving in Korea between November 7th and December 15th, 2011.
The Korea Pass cards, each worth 20,000 won, can be used anywhere except for transportation and at Shinsegae and Hyundai Department Stores, E-Mart and Homeplus. [

I’m very lucky that I learned about this promo just in time before I left for South Korea. There are four Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) Offices in the country some are in the Airports but the actual card can only be applied from the Tourist Information Center of B1 KTO Main Office.

Tourist Information Center of B1 KTO Main Office
Address: Seoul-si Jung-gu Cheonggyecheon-ro 40 (Zip: 100-180),

B1 of the Korea Tourism Organization building
Where else can I find this offer? Visiting a country knowing that I’ll be spending my own money, but in Korea – I’m actually been given the money to spend. 20,000krw may be a small amount of money for some, but for average travelers - this is a great deal! I spent it in my visit at BCJ Gardens and the rest were used to buy myself a pair of boots. All I can say is I’m so lucky and Thank You to the Korean Government for being so generous!

Another thing I noticed in the office, they offer wide range of maps of the city and provinces which is very helpful and very inviting to the tourists.


  1. Hey I'm also interested in the Korea Pass card but still a little unsure since there are so many other options such as the T-Money card.

    Do you think that the Korea Pass card is a good option ?

    Thank you

    Angela (:

    1. My personal choice is for Seoul City Pass Plus (with discount coupons) - if you are going to Seoul area.
      I just decided to have this Korea Pass card last year because they have a promotion on free 20000krw given to tourists.

      For Busan, simply use Cash Bee for the transportation card.

      Quoting JJKorea, the famous expert at

      Mybi card. You can buy it at 7eleven convenience store in Gimhae International airport, and use it in Busan, Gyeongju, Jeonju, and Seoul but not Hwacheon. You'd better use Mybi card mainly in Busan, Gyeonju, and Jeonju. It's hard to find the place for recharge in Seoul.

      There are 2 types of Seoul City Pass. just Seoul city pass and Seoul city pass Plus. The Seoul City Pass Plus can be used just like a T-money card, and T-money card can be used in Seoul, Busan, Jeju, and most cities in Korea.

      You can't recharge T Money cards at subway stations in Byssn (not sure about the other cities you mention or whether T Money can be topped up at convenience stores there), so you may want to ensure you have plenty of credit on your T Money card before leaving Seoul!


    2. Thank you so much ! I really appreciate you answering (:

  2. Is there a limit to Seoul City pass - like 1 day usage, 3 days usage, etc? I was told that I should get T-money since I'll be staying in Seoul for 2 weeks this Nov. I'm confused.

    1. I just did get my City Pass because it was for free with extra 20000krw. I'd rather have the Tmoney(+) for trains and some discounts on temples and restaurants.

  3. Hi!

    Nice post!

    We will be going to Busan on the end of November and stay there for two days before going to Seoul for another two days. Is it advisable to get Korea Pass?


    1. Hi Eneng, Thanks for dropping by my page.

      T-money is hard to re-charge in Busan. In Busan, I prefer you get the normal Train Card, which can also be used in buses. Then in Seoul have Seoul City Pass(+). If you see any free Korean Pass counter in Busan, then it's good as you will not pay for the card itself.

      When I arrived in Busan, even 7/11 can't recharge my Seoul City Pass or Korea Pass. The information pointed me to use the ATM machine to recharge it, but the "recharge" instruction is not accepting our card.

  4. Hey! I am considering between the normal T_money card and Seould city pass plus. I will go to Seoul, Jeonju, Busan, Gyeongju, Jeju, Andong. If consider about transportation, which one is better?
    And also the discounts Seoul pass plus offer includes the places in only Seoul?
    Thanks a lot

  5. Seoul City Pass - has additional tourist benefits because of the discounted entrance on some palaces.

    For Busan, its hard to find a counter where to top-up the cards, because they have their own Bee Card. Limited access of Tmoney in Busan.

    For further details, card descriptions are in here:

    1. Thanks a lot for your replying soon!
      That is very helpful

  6. Hi there!
    I was also fortunate enough to get the free Korea Pass last year right before I left for my trip. ^ ^
    I was just wondering, can we use Korea Pass for transportation in Busan? (As i understand that there is Korea Pass & Korea Pass Busan)

    Btw, nice blog! =)