Incheon to Seoul: Your Bus, Cab, & Train Options

Incheon to Seoul: Your Bus, Cab, & Train Options

Make your way from Incheon to Seoul by purchasing your airport train tickets here.

The Rundown

  • If you’ll enter South Korea through Incheon International Airport and would like to go straight to downtown Seoul, you can either take the train, bus, or taxi.

  • For trains, you can choose to ride the all-stop or the KTX (airport express).

  • For buses, you can either ride the standard, deluxe, or the KAL Limousine Bus for Seoul.

  • If you prefer a private vehicle to take you and your group from Incheon to Seoul, you can book this van transfer that’s good for seven (7) people.

  • Before boarding the train, make sure to have a T-Money Card on you. Aside from being a convenient way to pay for transportation fares in Seoul (cashless), this will give you a discounted rate whenever you ride the subway.

  • Starting your travel itinerary shortly after landing? You may opt to rent a subway locker where you can keep your luggage, or you may also have them delivered to your hotel via this airport luggage delivery service by SAFEX.

  • To help you with your budgeting, transportation fares in Seoul are also provided below.

  • Make sure to download apps such as Google Maps, KakaoMetro, KakaoBus, and Subway Korea to help you find your way in Korea.

Also read: Discover Seoul Pass: Your Key to the City

How to Go from Incheon to Seoul via Train

You can go to Seoul city center from Incheon International Airport Terminals 1 or 2 in a variety of ways. You may choose to take a public mode of transportation in Korea (AREX trains, buses, and cabs) or book your private vehicle transfer. Below are more details so you can weigh the best option for your trip:

1. Incheon to Seoul Station via KTX or Airport Express Train

The Express Train in Korea gets you straight to Seoul city center from Incheon Airport. Screengrab from  Klook

The Express Train in Korea gets you straight to Seoul city center from Incheon Airport. Screengrab from Klook

There are two types of trains that can take you to Seoul Station: the KTX (Korea Train Express) and the All-Stop Train. If your priority is to get to Seoul in the quickest way possible, we recommend for you to take the KTX.

The KTX or Airport Express Train in Korea runs up to 305 kph and can take you to Seoul in as fast as 43 minutes if coming from Terminal 1 and approximately 51 minutes if coming from Terminal 2. It's a popular choice among tourists since the trips are nonstop (from the airport it’ll take you directly to Seoul station, as shown in the route map below) and the seats are more comfortable. It also offers premium amenities, such as vending machines, airplane-style restrooms, and entertainment system. Full amenities are listed here.

Route map of KTX and All-stop Trains in Korea. Image credit:  Airport Railroad Co., Ltd./Korea Tourism Organization

Route map of KTX and All-stop Trains in Korea. Image credit: Airport Railroad Co., Ltd./Korea Tourism Organization

To purchase a KTX train ticket to Seoul Station offline, head on over to the airport’s Transportation Center where you’ll find machines that issue single-journey tickets. They are sold at a price of ₩9,000 for adults (around ₱410 or $7.9) and ₩7,000 for children (around ₱320 or $6.11). The rates are the same for those coming from Terminals 1 and 2. (Note that you’ll be required to put down a deposit of ₩500 (around ₱22 or $0.44) when making your purchase. You can get back this amount from refund machines that are located near the exit turnstiles.)

If your last stop is farther than Seoul Station, i.e. Myeongdong Station, you can easily select your final station in the same ticket machine. Expect to pay an additional fee of at least ₩1,350 (₱65 or $1.2).

Alternatively, you may also purchase your Incheon-to-Seoul KTX train ticket online. They usually come with a nice pre-booking discount, which you can easily check here. Below are the full details:

Scenic views await. Screengrab from  Klook

Scenic views await. Screengrab from Klook

  • One (1) AREX Airport Railroad Express Train Ticket for Incheon International Airport to Seoul Station (or vise-versa)

  • PRICE: only ₱375 or $7.1 for a one-way ticket, when not discounted

  • Not inclusive of the ₩500 ticket deposit (around ₱22 or $0.44)

  • Not inclusive of extra charges for other metro stations, if going farther than Seoul Station. (However, you can easily adjust your final stop/station and pay the additional amount when redeeming your ticket through the ticket machine.)

If you don’t want to go through the hassle of buying single-journey train tickets, paying for a deposit, and using the refund machine each time you ride the train, you can just purchase a T-Money card. This is a transportation card in Korea that works like beep in the Philippines, EZ-Link in Singapore, and Oyster Card in London. You can just top up a certain amount and reload whenever necessary. More importantly, when you use T-Money, you can get a Seoul subway discount of ₩100 per ride, which is roughly equivalent to ₱5 or $0.09. (For more information about using and reloading T-Money, read our guide here.)

For your reference, here are the operating hours of the KTX or Airport Express Train:

  • Incheon International Airport Terminal 1 to Seoul Station (approx. 43 minutes)

    • First train at 5:23am

    • Last train at 10:48pm

  • Incheon International Airport Terminal 2 to Seoul Station (approx. 51 minutes)

    • First train at 5:15am

    • Last train at 10:40pm

2. Incheon to Seoul Station via the All-Stop Train

If you don’t mind a slightly longer train ride to go from Incheon to Seoul, you may choose to take the All-Stop Train in Korea. The trip will be around 58 minutes if you’ll come from Terminal 1 and approximately 1 hour and 6 minutes if you’ll board from Terminal 2.

Riding the All-Stop train will offer you the experience of commuting like most locals do. It stops at several stations, including Cheongna International City, Gyeyang, Gimpo International Airport, Digital Media City, and Hongik University. Expect the train to be packed during peak hours.

Here’s a photo comparison of the KTX and the All-Stop train:

Image credit: AREX Korea

Similar to the KTX, you may also buy your All-Stop train tickets to Seoul Station from the machines found at the airport’s Transportation Centers. Expect to pay a lower price of ₩4,150 (around ₱190 or $3.6) if you’re coming from Incheon Terminal 1 and ₩4,750 (around ₱216 or $4.15) if coming from Terminal 2. If your last stop is farther than Seoul Station, an extra charge of at least ₩1,350 (₱65 or $1.2) will be added. Deposit of ₩500 also applies. (If I were you, I’d really get this T-Money card to get discounted rides and not worry about the deposit at all. You can buy one here.)

How to go from Incheon to Seoul via Bus

1. Incheon Airport to Seoul Bus

If you prefer taking the bus to see the sights that you might otherwise miss when you ride the KTX or All-Stop train, you can purchase a ticket at the booths located outside Gates 4, 6, 7, 8, 11, 13 or 9C of Incheon International Airport Terminal 1. You can either buy a ticket for the Standard or Deluxe airport buses in Korea:

  • Deluxe Bus

    • This is popular among tourists since it makes fewer stops and has more comfortable seats.

    • PRICE: ₩14,000-16,000 (around ₱680-780 or $13-15)

  • Standard Bus

    • Take this if you prefer to save money, don't mind being in a more crowded bus, and a longer travel time.

    • PRICE: ₩9,000-10,000 (around ₱430-480 or $8-9)

The most common tourist bus routes to Seoul and their operating hours are as follows (information taken from Incheon International Airport):

A. 6001 (Dongdaemun Fashion Town)

B. 6003 (Guro/Seoul National University)

C. 6005 (Insadong)

D. 6015 (Mapo/Myeongdong)

E. 6020 (Banpo/Gangnam Station)

F. 6030 (Hannam/Itaewon)

G. 6702 (Namsan/Dongdaemun)

If you're not sure which bus stop you’re supposed to get off to, you can easily find out by using Google Maps.

2. Incheon to Seoul via KAL Limousine Bus

For an unbeatable bus experience, you can also ride the KAL Limousine Bus for only ₱803 or $15. The KAL Limousine in Korea offers premium bus seats, complimentary WiFi, and a bottle of water for refreshment. More importantly, you also get the convenience of being dropped off in major hotels, attractions, and subway stations. These include Lotte Hotel Seoul, Aloft Seoul Myeongdong, Seoul Station, JW Marriot Dongdaemun, Novotel Ambassador Seoul Gangnam, and Lotte Hotel World Jamsil. Click here to see the full bus routes and drop-off points available.

Image credit: Klook

  • PRICE: ₱760 or $14.6, when not discounted

  • One-way transfer from Incheon Airport to Seoul city center

  • Professional coach driver

  • Wifi on board

  • Free water (self-service)

How to go from Incheon Airport to Seoul via Taxi

If you don't feel like sharing your ride, you can always take a taxi. For convenience, you may opt to pre-book your Incheon-to-Seoul cab online. Here are the details:

Screngrab from  Klook

Screngrab from Klook

  • PRICE: starts at ₱3,300 or $63.9 for the one-way trip, when not discounted

  • One-way transfer from Incheon Airport to your destination in Seoul (or vice-versa)

  • English-speaking driver

  • Rates include toll fees and fuel costs

Otherwise, you may also just hail your taxi upon arrival. Simply proceed to the designated booths outside the airport’s Arrivals Hall:

  • Standard Taxi

    • This is your average cab. Usually orange or silver. It's the cheapest option, but there is a 20% surcharge that applies for late-night trips (12mn to 4am).

    • Base fare starts at ₩3,800 (around ₱180 or $3.4)

  • Deluxe Taxi

    • If you want to have more legroom, go for the deluxe. It usually comes in black with a yellow sign on top. No late-night surcharge applies.

    • Base fare starts at ₩3,200-5,500 depending on vehicle (around ₱160-268 or $2.9-5.1)

  • Jumbo Taxi

    • This type is ideal for large groups (6-10 people). Card payment is available. There is no applicable late-night surcharge.

    • Base fare also starts at ₩3,200-5,500 depending on vehicle (around ₱160-268 or $2.9-5.1)

  • International Taxi

    • It's exactly like your Standard Taxi, except the driver can speak in other languages, i.e. Chinese and Japanese.

Incheon Airport to Seoul via Private Transfers/Van

Perfect for a group of seven (7)! Screengrab from  Klook

Perfect for a group of seven (7)! Screengrab from Klook

If you’d like to book a private vehicle for your group to go from Incheon to Seoul, you may do so one through Klook. They offer day and night pick-ups/drop-offs to suit your schedule. Here are the general details:

  • PRICE: Starts at ₱3,825 or $73.4, without the discount

  • Inclusive of toll road fees amounting to ₩6,600

  • Rate is not inclusive of overtime waiting fee and other personal expenses, should there be any.

Alternatively, if you are not a group of seven and don’t mind sharing a van with other travelers, you may book this cheaper shared van to take you from Incheon to Seoul here: Shared Airport Transfers (Incheon or Gimpo Airport) for Seoul


Transportation Fares in Seoul

Once you've settled in your hotel room or AirBNB, you'll soon be going around. Here are some of the transportation costs in Seoul to help you with your budgeting (subject to change without notice):

1. Subway in Seoul Base Fares

  • Subway base price in Seoul for adults is ₩1,350 (around ₱60 or $1.1). Those who will use T-Money will get a discount of ₩100.

  • Subway base price in Seoul for teenagers (13-18 years old) is also ₩1,350 (around ₱60 or $1.1). Those who will use T-Money will get a discount of ₩630.

  • Subway base price in Seoul for children (7-12 years old) is ₩450 (around ₱22 or $0.4). No discount is granted even if T-Money is used.

The subway basic fare applies to a travel distance of 10 km or less. You will be charged an additional ₩100 (around ₱5 or $0.09) for every 5 km traveled within a distance of 10-50 km, and 100 for every 8 km traveled with a distance of over 50 km.

2. Buses in Seoul Basic Fares

Alternatively, you can also take the bus when going around Seoul. Here are the base prices for adults:

  • Blue Bus Seoul Ticket Price: ₩1,250 (around ₱56 or $1.09)

  • Green Bus Seoul Ticket Price: ₩1,250 (around ₱56 or $1.09)

  • Yellow Bus Seoul Ticket Price: ₩1,100 (around ₱50 or $0.9)

  • Red Bus Seoul Ticket Price: ₩2,300 (around ₱105 or $2)

  • Night Bus Seoul Ticket Price: ₩2,150 (around ₱98 or $1.9)


Transportation Apps to Download for Your Korea Trip

Download these apps to know how best you can go from one point to another:

KakaoMetro

App Store  |  Google Play Store

  • KakaoMetro's maps contain nearby landmarks for easier navigation.

  • This app can tell you which carriage you should take to match your exit point. (For example, if you want to head out of your final station via Exit 2, the app can tell you which carriage to board so that you'll be conveniently near Exit 2).

  • It will also tell you the fastest routes to take.

Subway Korea

Myeongdong to Gangnam in 32 min.

App Store  |  Google Play Store

  • This train app has vector-based maps that render clear images at any zoom level.

  • To use, key in your destination and it will find the best subway route from your current location.

  • As shown in the screenshot above, you'll also be able to get an estimate of your travel time and fare cost.

KakaoBus

App Store  |  Google Play Store

  • KakaoBus offers real-time bus arrival information. It can also keep you updated with departure and arrival alarms.

As an alternative, you can also use the web-based Google Maps, if you don't want to download the app. 


TIPS!

  • Don't let the Seoul subway map intimidate you. Riding the metro won't be as complicated as it looks.

  • In major stations like Seoul Station, there are information or help desks who can provide you friendly assistance.

  • If you're already in the airport, just follow the signs leading to the Airport Railroad or Transportation Center. This is where you can purchase your tickets for the the All-Stop and KTX trains.

  • Thinking of using Uber in South Korea? While the app is perfectly accessible, you may find the fares unreasonably higher.


Subway Storage lockers in Korea

No, these subway lockers can't take you to any destination (unless you're 444 from the Korean drama Black), but if you'd need a place to store your luggage, you can do so by renting one. Most tourists rent one out when they arrive (prior their hotel/AirBnB check-in) or before they depart (after hotel check-out/before the flight).

Here's how the subway lockers would look like:

The basic storage time for a subway locker in Korea would be 2-4 hours. This would cost you around ₩2,000 (around ₱95 or $1.8) for the small lockers and ₩4,000 (around ₱190 or $3.6) for the large ones. Keep in mind that since many subway locker machines in Korea do not accept cash, you must use your T-Money or credit card with you.

Alternatively, you may also book this luggage delivery service by SAFEX in Korea so you don’t have to carry your bags when going to Seoul or heading back to Incheon Airport.

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