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Korea Prepaid SIM Card

Korea Prepaid SIM Card

While you can rent a phone on the Arrivals floor of the international airports in Korea or at one of the phone shops, you can also purcharse a prepaid SIM card for use during your stay in Korea. This is an option that can suit regardless of the length of your stay. The SIM card can be purchased in person or online.

Unlocked phone required: Before arriving in Korea, you must make sure that your phone is unlocked - meaning that you will be able to remove your provider's SIM card and replace it with your Korean one. (If upi don't know if your phone is unlocked or not, check with your service provider prior to leaving your home country.) If your phone is not unlocked and your service provider is not willing to unlock it, you will have to rent a cell phone in Korea. This can be done relatively easily and although, more expensive than the SIM card, for a range of rates.

-International Airports: The major telecom companies have outlets at the airports where one can rent a phone or get or pick-up a pre-ordered (online) Korean SIM card.
Incheon International Airport may have the greater number of options, but phones and SIM cards are also available at
Gimpo International Airport (Seoul)
Gimhae International Airport (Busan)
Jeju International Airport
- Busan Harbor International Passenter Terminal
- Telecom shops all over the country
- Designated convenience stores such as GS25
- Train Stations

The following are some of the companies that offer pre-paid SIM cards that can be purchased online and picked up at a Korean location (usually the airport) or purchased on-site at some of the above listed locations.
EG SIM card - can be purchased online or in person at various locations, including airports and some GS25 convenience stores   
KT olleh  
LG U+      

1. The phone in which you want to use the Korean SIM card must be unlocked (if you discover it is not when you go to use the SIM card, you will likely not get a refund on your payment).
2. Identification such as Korean Alien Card (ARC) or other showing your full name and preferably with a photo (passport, driver's license). More than one ID may be required.
3. Credit card you used to pay for the card must be in your name (name must match IDs)
4. Companies may each have unique requirements, so read the information on the site carefully if you reserve your pre-paid SIM card online
5. Depending on how long you will be using the SIM card in Korea, you may need to recharge either the voice balance (expiration time varies) or data balance (usually after 30 days).

TOP UP PAYMENTS can be made as follows:
1. Via bank transfer (if you have a Korean bank account) using ATM or Internet banking, as well as in person at a bank
2. Buying a top-up card from a designated convenience store/telecom shop
3. Automatic credit card payment

You can usually select the last 4 digits of the telephone number you will be using in Korea.
You will want to make sure that your SIM card is working before leaving the pick-up location.
Also, while most cards are not language/user friendly, you will want to try out different functions in front of staff so that you can get any additional instructions/explanations you may need. Don't assume all will be the same as through your home provider.

- Staff, even at the airports, may not be fluent English (or other language) speakers. For example, some are there primarily to help out Japanese or Chinese visitors, for example, so they may be more fluent in those languages.  
- The phrasing in English sections of telecom company websites may be different from what your are used to and consequently, can be misunderstood. 
- The SIM cards are not compatible with all phone types - you'll want to make sure that yours is not one of them.


K4E Editor: tries to ensure that the information we provide is accurate and complete, so should you notice any errors or omissions in the content above please contact us at



Last Updated on 2017-09-26

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