If you are travelling to South Korea for a holiday or to see the winter Olympics then unless you have travelled before you will ask yourself how much South Korean won spending money you will need? Assuming you have your flights booked, we take a look at the cost of things you might spend your hard earned euros on while visiting.
€1.00 = (to about) 1280 won
Firstly accommodation and this depends how fussy you are. I did a search on Booking.com for accommodation in Seoul the Capital city, for the week of 12-17th February during the winter olympics and accommodation for 2 people for 7 nights ranged from only €140 (179k won); but that’s a bunkbed in a dormitory with shared facilities, but if you are a student for example, hey what’s different? On the other hand if you have more means then the JW Marriot Hotel is a snip at €3500 (4.5m won) for 7 nights… oh hang on they’ve sold out for that week but never mind you get the picture.
If you are going to the winter Olympics then you need to stay nearby so a search in Pyeongchang where the events are being held is a different story altogether. The cheapest accommodation to be found was around €780 (1m won) for 7 nights for a double room, but given the occasion some might argue that is not bad. The higher end of the market was, well thousands but interestingly all the ones I looked at were sold out!
If it is the case that you have all flights and accommodation sorted then how much is food and beer, that’s the next most important thing isn’t it?
I general South Korea is like everywjere else in that you have the street food and local cafes and bars which are at the cheaper end of the market up to the expensive restaurants if you are not on a budget. You can find cheap snack and dinner for less than €10 (12k won) in a variety of places and standards are generally high. The price of beer is generally quite good especially if you buy the domestic beer, and can start from around €3 for 0.5 ltr draught. You might pay a bit more for a pint of Guiness though – if you can find one!
As always a good source of advice can be had by customers themselves and a pretty good source is on Trip Advisor.
It would be hard to give a balanced view of restaurants in the Olympic areas because the prices could well go up with demand. Again, the best bet is to search review sites. A very good graphic with recent prices is below courtesy of Numbeo. The full picture is in this article.
South Korea has an extensive network of trains, buses, ferries and air-routes. One way tickets on the local transportation system is around €2.00, taxi fares and petrol are all reasonable. Train travel by all accounts is very fast, punctual and frequent. However, the competition means that pricing can be confusing so good research is recommended before you buy tickets.
Hopefully that will give you a little idea of how much south Korean Money you will need if you travel. Of course, if you want to get the best possible exchange rate then head to our South Korean won page .