Telecommunication

WiFi Korea – Pocket WiFi Rental in South Korea

I started doing my research when my guests requested for the best way to get connected in their trip in South Korea. There were so many options ranging from very cheap to very expensive WiFi rental and from very limited connection and to very reliable ones (but expensive!).

Those options:
  1. Buying an international prepaid calling card where you need a Korean line (mobile/landline/public phone) – very cheap with long call hours but no data usage
  2. Buying a Korean sim card + data but using your own smart phone – cheaper but still expensive
  3. Korea Phone rental + call + data – very expensive
  4. Renting a WiFi router – a brilliant option since you can also make calls from Viber, KakaoTalk or Skype but this will go down to the WiFi router’s performance or connection

And then… I stumbled upon WiFi Korea website. They have the cheapest WiFi rental options!

Side by side comparison:

WiFi Korea rentals – Deposit is USD100, rental per day from USD2.99 ~ 3.99

WiFi Airport rentals – Deposit is from USD150 ~ 400, rental per day from USD5.00 ~ 10.00

The only hiccup is that they don’t have a counter at Incheon or Gimpo Airport. However, that is countered by an online reservation instead which significantly cut down the cost.

You may do an online reservation on WiFi Korea website and get all your kit (as in the picture above) right on your doorstep when you reached your boarding ie. hotel or guesthouse with a very minimal service fee. No hassle, right?

The WiFi-Korea plans offered are:
  1. Everywhere Speed Pack – as the name says itself; you can get connected everywhere in Korea
  2. Urban Data Pack – get connected in most of the cities area and Jeju Island
I had the opportunity to use both WiFi plans:
  1. Everywhere Speed Pack (ESP) – for a month
  2. Urban Data Pack (UDP) – for a day
Both routers have long battery hours about 9 to 10 hours per day and you may connect to maximum 5 devices but the stark difference was when I entered a building or a passage underground – Urban Data Pack will get disconnected or poor reception.

The black – WiBro / UDP

The red – LTE / ESP

That explains the communication systems used behind the two. ESP used LTE – Long Term Evolution or 4G LTE while UDP used WiBro (Wireless Broadband or WiMax). However it still boils down to:

“Neither technology is expected to replace Wi-Fi home networks and hotspots. For consumers, then, the choice between LTE and WiMax comes down to which services are available in their region and offer better speed and reliability.” – by compnetworking.about.com

You must remind yourself that the plans are used when you are on the move but when you want to do the heavy lifting jobs like uploading huge size videos or downloading movies; stick to your home or hotel’s networks.

L-R: Josh and James.

By the way, I am very honored to be able to meet some of the people behind WiFi Korea personally – James and Josh. They are very young, skillful and equipped. Coming from various expertise in the industry, the team are still expanding and so is their business with a very clear vision and goal.

Get your fingers going to WiFi Korea website and remember to choose: Budget Travel 2 Korea to get your discount now! ^^

8 Comments

  • JeeJik

    There's a trend among guesthouses nowadays – they rent wifi router to guests at a minimal fee a day.

    I went to Japan back in Jan and the guesthouse even lent theirs for free at no charge for the whole duration of our 5 nights stay.
    So it's best to check with the guesthouse first if they do rent wifi router (or they called wifi egg there).

  • Jack

    I, herby, proclaimed my undying love for you because you just solve my internet problem! Yes, I love you for that. I basically went — OH THANK GOD! When I saw this post. Seeing that I will be in Korea for 18 days in October, I guess I am going for the Everywhere Plan. It's cool that we can connect to five devices coz my group is less than that. Just one would be enough. Sweet!

  • Jasa Server Pulsa

    Thank you for your information! I am living in the Indonesia an im moving to korea very soon! I would like to know what cellphone companies they have there.. and if sprint pcs or verizon, or at&t phones will work there…! please get back with me, it would be a big help! Thanks in advance,

    • zarinajanikorea

      Hi Jasa,

      In Korea they have KT, LG UPlus, SK Telecom – among the major telecommunication operator there. The type of telecommunication there is CDMA, while in my country use GSM. The phone that I used in Korea was my own Malaysian phone with Korea sim card had no problem at all. You can go to any mobile shop there and ask for assistance but not all could speak English though.

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