ONLINE SHOPPING IN KOREA
Q. Where we can do online shopping in korea for daily items?
A. Online shopping for daily need items can be done at .
Gmarket: Offers in English. You can find more details on www.gmarket.com
11st: Offers in English. You can find more details on www.11st.co.kr
You may find may discounts on groupon, coupang websites. They have smartphone apps as well. Usually tomato, potato, onion will be almost half the price in gmarket as compared to homeplus or local market. You can compare the prices.
When you are planning for some travel or outings you can check for discount coupons on coupang. There can be good last minute options as well for flight tickets or car bookings as well on coupang.
CALLING TO INDIA
Q. What are the options to call India using PC?
A. There are many VOIP softwares available. Few commonly used are listed below.
Skype - Skype has 2 type of subscriptions viz. Pay per Use and Monthly subscription. You can find more details on www.skype.com
Internetcalls - Landline: 0.010 Euro/min Mobile: 0.007 Euro/min. For more details visit www.internetcalls.com
ActionVOIP - Landline: 0.010 Euro/min Mobile: 0.010 Euro/min. For more details visit www.actionvoip.com
Jumblo - Landline: 0.013 Euro/min Mobile: 0.010 Euro/min. For more details visit www.jumblo.com
Nymgo - Both Landline and Mobile at 0.013 USD/min. For more details visit www.nymgo.com
Freecall - Landline: 0.020 Euro/min Mobile: 0.023 Euro/min. For more details visit www.freecall.com
Q. What are the options to call India using Smartphone?
A. There are many mobile VOIP softwares available. Few commonly used are listed below. You can download and use the mobile version of following while connected to Internet using 3G/4G/Wifi.
Skype - Mobile App Name Skype
Nymgo - Mobile App Name Nymgo
ActionVOIP/Freecall/Jumblo - Mobile App Name Mobile VOIP
Fring - Mobile App Name Fring - Landline 1.5 Cents/min Mobile 7 Cents/min
Apart from above options, if you want to use free minutes provided by carrier then you can use OTO International mobile application.
Q, What are the options to call India using Non-Smartphone?
A. You can buy International calling cards from some local foreign food marts in your city and follow steps given on it to call using a Non-Smartphone device.
COMMUTATION IN KOREA
Q. Where can I get information about Bus Routes?
A. Please refer below websites to get bus routes.
For Bus Routes in Seoul:
For Bus routes all over Korea:
Q. Where can I get information about Subway?
A. Please refer below website to get Subway routes.
Q. Where can I get information about long distance Trains?
A. Use the below site to see the routes and to buy tickets for long distance train and KTXhttp://korail.com
Q. How can I get a new Korean Driving License?
A. Refer below url to get the process of making a new driving license in Korea.http://dl.koroad.or.kr/english/01_info/info06.jsp&Mode=11&TMenu=3&LMenu=2&Section=1
Q. How can I get a new Korean Driving License?
A. Refer below url to get the process of making a new driving license in Korea.
Q. What is the process to change a foreign license into Korean driving license?
A. Below URL would guide you to convert your existing driving license to Korean driving license.
Q. Can we make International driving license while in Korea?If yes How?
A. International driver's license is an internationally recognized translation of your domestic driver's license. It must be accompanied by your driver license when you travel.Refer the below url to get all the details about the process.
Q. Do I need to buy a Car to live in Seoul?
A. Seoul has excellent public transport system including buses and Subway network. To move around and commuting to office public transport is best and so one can easily live in Seoul without owning a Car. But if you are adventurous type and love to travel and go for sight seeing a lot then owning a car would make it much easy and fun. In case you prefer to travel occasionally then you also have the option to rent a Car for a day or two and still manage without owning a Car.
Q. If I am interested to buy a car what shall I do?
A. In case you plan to buy new Car, you may visit any of the Car show rooms that you find. If you hope to go for a used car then it is advisable to research about the car model and price on net first. You may refer below website which also have English support.
Q. Well now that know about Car rental, where do I get more guidance about it?
A. In Korea, renting a car is easy. If you plan to travel around metropolitan cities, you are recommended to use public transportation instead of a car. However, for longer journeys to many provincial sites or especially around Jeju Island renting may prove to be a better option. Refer below site for additional information.
Q. What is T money Card? How does it work? Where can I recharge it?
A. T-money is a transportation card as well as a device used to pay for transportation fares, and, in some cases, transactions at convenience stores. T-money can be used on public buses and subways in several different metropolitan cities. It offers 100 won off the basic cash fare, and still more when transferring from one bus to another, one subway line to another, or from bus to subway or vice versa (within a transfer time limit). The below website have nice explanation about the T-Money Card.
Q. I hope to know about various travel Destination and festivals in Korea. Can you refer some websites?
A. The 'Visit Korea' website has lot of information about Korea tourist spots. The website has English and many other languages support as well. Refer below sites for more information.
Q. I heard there are many temples in Korea which allows tourist to stay overnight and experience the temple rituals. Can I get some more details?
A. A Temple Stay is a cultural-experience program designed to help people understand Korean Buddhism better. Temple stays offer various kinds of practicing methods such as Yebul (ceremonial service involving chanting), Chamseon (Zen meditation), Dahdoh (tea ceremony) and Balwoo Gongyang (communal Buddhist meal service). Participants can find their 'true self' amongst the harmony of nature while staying at a temple. Temple Life, the experience of temples, is another program designed to help people understand Korean Buddhism and the life of monks better.
Q. I heard about Condominium, Pension etc .In Korea, how are they different compared to Hotels?
A. . Hotels: You will find them in every small and big city. People use them when they are on business trips. Also tourists use them for staying. In hotel there is no cooking facility usually. Condominium: There are a few chains of Condominiums here in Korea. Usually they are rooms in very big building and located in tourist spots. We don’t find condominiums in Cities. They are less expensive compared to hotel and there is option to cook. The rooms are equipped with cooking gas, utensils, and some cutleries. It is good if you are hoping to cook by yourself.http://hanwharesort.co.kr http://daemyungresort.com http://kpcondo.com
A. . Pension: They are somewhat similar to Condominiums and also found in tourist locations. They are smaller buildings compared to condominiums. Pension house comes in various shapes and sizes located in beautiful scenic places deep inside forest, mountain, next to lakes etc.. You may book big pensions with multiple rooms and big halls. Usually people go in groups of 15, 20 or more and have fun in Pensions. Cooking Facilities are usually available in Pensions. To be sure check in advance.http://wooripension.com http://huepension.com http://minbaknet.com
Q. Is there any help line where I can ask about travel related queries when I am stuck somewhere or while I am preparing for my trip?
A. Yes. You can call 1330 from your phone and ask your queries after selecting the language you want to speak in. Queries can be related to travel, public transportation, daily living or for interpretation when dealing with taxi drivers etc.
Add area code according to the Province.
For example for information on Seoul, dial 02-1330. For Gyenggi Do dial 031-1330 and so on.
The service is available 24/7.They have English support too. If they cannot immediately find the answer, they take your phone number and call back after some time. It is really useful service.
If you are outside Korea and want to avail this service, press +82(area code + 1330)
Korean Area Codes (While calling from abroad, drop the (0) )
Q. I hope to do some advanced investigation about the place I am planning to visit. Are there any online maps available?
A. There are online maps which shows the distance by bus, car and also shows the rout after you select the source and destination location. You may use the street view feature in these maps to see real photos of the exact location of your interest. The sites are in Korean but with little help from your colleague or friends you can learn to use them and would be very helpful in your trips.
Q. I am interested in Camping. How shall I do it?
A. In Korea there are lot of places for Camping. The Camping sites have very good facility like shower rooms, Toilets etc. Most people carry tents etc with them and spend a day or two in these sites.Even though there are many camping sites available most of them need to be reserved in advance.
Camping Season is usually from May to October. If interested to visit the good sites, it is advised to do reservation at least 2-3 month in advance.In Camping sites, you can usually rent a space where you can install your tent and the charge is around 20,000won per night for 3-4 people. Price may vary site to site and season to season. Below are few websites that give lot of information on camping Sites.
Q. Could you suggest me some English tourist site of each Province?
A. Refer below URL's.
Ganwon-do (Ganwon Province):http://eng.gwd.go.kr/page/main.html
Goeje (Koeje) Island:http://english.geoje.go.k/main
Gyeonggi-do (Kyonggi Province):http://english.gg.go.kr
Jeju-do (Cheju Island):http://english.jeju.go.kr/index.php
Jeollabuk-do (North Jeolla Province):http://www.jeonbuk.go.kr/02en/index.jsp
Jeollanam-do (South Jeolla Province):http://english.jeonnam.go.kr
Q. When we travel long distance in Korea, we find many rest area on the way. Each have different kind of facility. Can we have more information on them to decide where to stop for a better experience?
A. Refer below site for list of Rest Area. In the website, you can select each rest area and see the facilities. You can get address and phone numbers as well. You can select the highway number and get list of all rest areas and see facilities available in them.
Q. Where can I get more information about hiking routes?
A. The below site have lot of information on hiking routes. The site is in Korean.
Q. Where can I get information on the beaches in Korea?
A. Below is a list of top 12 beaches in Korea.
WHILE COMING TO KOREA
Q. Is there any language barrier while communicating with local people as I have heard that Korean people don’t understand English well?
A. Very few people speak English and the most of the people understand and speak broken English like Hello, Bye, Stop, etc. But for official purposes, it is better to take help from a Korean friend. The interesting part is though Korean language is very different from English but there some words which are identical to Indian languages (Tamil) which could be an advantage while learning.
Q. What are the primary items we need to bring while coming to Korea?
A. Money or traveler’s checks
Clothing: Warm clothing, Jeans, Kurtis & tops for women if you are fat as most of the clothes available in Korea are for lean people, formal clothes like business suits for Men as they are very expensive over here, bed covers, towels, etc.
Food: Indian spices, grocery items like dal, basmati rice, ghee, tea, etc.
Medicines: Necessary medicines for cold, headache.
Deodorants,Cosmetics: You can bring your favorites. Although there is an excellent selection of imported and local cosmetics brands, your preferred shades may not be available. But if you are ready to try some new cosmetics brands there is a wide range of good brands in Korea that are worth trying.
Q. Are all the Indian vegetables available in Korea?
A. Commonly found vegetables include potatoes, sweet potato, onions, tomatoes, bell pepper, cauliflower, peas, eggplant (baingan), cucumber, carrot, radish, cabbage, mushrooms, broccoli, spinach, lettuce, parsley, beans, okra, bean sprouts and many others. Other Korean vegetarian items like zucchini (substitute for bottle guards (lauki) and tofu (substitute for paneer) are available too. Indian vegetables are easily available in Seoul Foreign Mart, Ansan vegetable market and some Korean open vegetable markets called (shijang).
Q. Are Indian groceries available in Korea?If yes then what is the price difference between India and Korea?
A. Indian groceries are easily available in Expat Marts and Foreign Marts which are located in Seoul, Suwon, Ansan, Daegu, Busan and Daejon. Most of the cities have Indian restaurants too which sell Indian spices, Ready to cook food, atta, ghee and many more. But the groceries available in Korea are usually three times more expensive than the actual price in India rupees.
Q. Is there any way to bring groceries from India by post or courier? If yes how much will it cost to bring those items?
A. Yes it is possible to bring groceries from India by post. It usually costs around Rupees 2000~ 2500 for 10kgs if you use India Post and it takes around 7~ 14 days to reach Korea. Liquid items are not allowed but some Indians have got medicines properly bubble wrapped. Hence all the items should be packed properly so that they don’t look black or suspicious. All the rates and duration might vary from place to place. Please refer to the following link for updated rates:
For more reference on food & grocery items please refer to below URL.
Q. How is the weather in Korea?
A. Korean winters, from December to March are bitterly cold and snowy. Summers are hot and humid and it rains sometimes. The best time of the year to visit Korea is autumn i.e. between September to November when the weather is usually pleasent. Spring, from April to June is another beautiful season with mild temperatures and cherry blossoms spread across the country.
Q. Are Indian winter clothes suitable for Korea?
A. As the winter is bitterly cold and snowy in Korea, you need to buy padded jackets, thermal wear / warmers and snow boots (from Korea) that can help you during the winter season.
Q. Are winter clothes very expensive in Korea?
A. It depends on the place from where and the time when you make the purchase. The best time to buy winter clothes (like padded jackets which are essential to survive during the winter) is during the autumn season or after the winter season because during those periods padded jackets can be bought at discounted prices. Usually the malls, factory outlets have the end season sales.
TAXATION IN KOREA
Q. What is the official site for Tax system in Korea?
A. Below website would provide you all information regarding Taxation in Korea. It has english interface as well. http://www.nts.go.kr/eng/
Q. Is there any helpline dedicated to foreigners for tax related queries?
A. You can call 1588-0569 or 02-2076-5711. If these phone number does not work for some reason, please visist the NTS site and call the updated number.
Q. Do foreigners need to pay tax in Korea? Is there any kind of tax exemption for foreign employees?
A. Yes, most foreign employees are required to pay income taxes. There are cases where some foreign employees may get partial tax exemption for certain period of time. You are required to check with your employer whether you fall under such categories.
Q. How is income tax calculated in Korea?
A. Below is the summary of tax calculation effective from year 2009. This information is given here just for your reference. To get accurate and latest calculation formulae, please visit the official tax site. Individual Income Tax(Progressive Tax): -Earnings up to W12million - Tax Rate is 6% -Earnings from W12 million to W46 million - Tax Rate is 15% -Earnings from W46 million to W88 million - Tax Rate is 24% -Earnings over W88 million - Tax Rate is 33% Flat Tax: -Foreigner's can choose to pay a flat tax at 15% instead of the progressive tax as described above Resident Surtax: -In addition to the above tax there is a resident surtax, which is 10% of income tax.
Q. Is the whole salary/Income considered taxable?
A. There are a few deductions applicable and as a result, the total taxable amount is lesser than the total income of any individual. These deductions are applicable only if one chooses the progressive taxation. If you opt for flat taxation, these deductions do not apply. Examples of deduction for your reference. -Automobile allowance -Insurance premium paid by employer on behalf of employee -Medical expenses -Taxpayers receive rebate of payments made via credit card and cash receipts -Education expenses -Deduction for spouse and dependents -Deductions for dependents over 65 -Deductions for disabled dependent -Additional deductions for large households -More.... To know the exact category and amount, please refer to the Official tax site
Q. What is tax refund?
A. In Korea, sales taxes are included in the purchase price of each product. If you’re a visitor to Korea (non-resident) and are taking goods out of the country, you may be eligible for a tax refund upon your departure. -Refundable taxes: VAT/sales tax (10%) and special taxes on high-priced goods (jewelry, etc.) -Refund Eligibility Purchases: -Purchases at each retail store must total 30,000 won or more (inclusive of tax). -Goods must be purchased within 3 months of departure from Korea. Visitor Status: -Must be an international who has been residing/visiting in Korea for less than six months; or -Be an overseas Korean (holder of Korean passport and permanent resident) residing in/visiting Korea for less than 3 months; or -Be a Korean student studying abroad for three years or more. For more details and procedure, refer the visitkorea site below. http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/SH/SH_EN_7_1_4.jsp
Q. What is Year End Tax settlement?
A. This is the period where you do final settlement of your taxes. You need to fill forms where you indicate all the categories you want to get deductions. You are required to submit your credit car summary of whole year, medical expense summary, Car insurance receipt and other documents to claim deductions. Your company's finance department should guide you through the exact process. There are two dates when income tax payments are due. Employees: 10 March Business Owners, Freelancers: 31 May
Q. What is Cash Receipt System?
A. The Cash Receipt System is a system of providing income deductions or tax credits based on a taxpayer’s usage of Cash Receipts. It is a way for the NTS to keep tabs on the cash economy by issuing a Cash Receipt for cash purchases. Cash Receipts are issued for cash purchases made worth 5,000 KRW (or roughly US$ 5) or more, and are issued using the existing credit card networks. At the point of sale, purchasers need to provide the issuer with proper identification, such as resident ID or cell phone number. Credit cards, membership cards, mileage cards, debit cards, or the NTS-issued Cash Receipt Cards may also be used for identification. This Cash recipts can be submitted during Year End Tax settlement to get Tax deduction.
NOTE: The above information is intended as general information only. Since there are frequent changes to the he tax laws you must visit the NTS site for exact and updated details. If you find any errors in the above information, please let us know.