Family Vacation: A Week in South Korea for Php 60,000 ( 1,200 USD)

Last year, we were able to finally mark this country off our bucket list. We went to South Korea for a week-long vacation: staying 3 days in Jeju and the remaining 4 days in Seoul, and spending around Php 60,000 ($1,200) all in (good for 2 adults and 1 child). Here’s how we did it:

Airfare

Like almost everyone else, we look out for seat sales. We chanced upon Airasia’s seat sale sometime late 2015 and managed to book ourselves all in roundtrip flights from Manila to Incheon for around Php 10,800. However, 2 months before our original flight, the husband had some conflict with his work schedule so we were left with no choice but to rebook to a more expensive flight, Php19,800 for 3 pax =(. The good news is, from originally staying in South Korea for 5 days, we decided to extend it to a week so we can visit Jeju as well.

There are no direct flights from Manila to Jeju Island so we booked separate plane tickets via Jeju Air.  The tickets cost us Php5,123 for 2 adults, reasonable, but it can still get cheaper if you book around March. The best part of booking with Jeju Air is that children below 2 years old get to ride for free, yey! There are also other airlines that fly to Jeju: Eastar Jet, Asiana, Korean Air, JinAir.

Philippine Travel Tax: Php 1,620/person + Php 200 infant

Total airfare: Php28, 363

Accommodations

For our first night in Jeju, we stayed at Jeju Tong Hotel located in Seogwipo for only Php2,010. This hotel is a five-minute walk from the airport limousine bus stop and very near convenient stores and restaurants. You can walk from the hotel to Cheonjiyeon Falls as well. On our second night, we transferred to Ilchulsun Pension House (Php2,345/night) which is very near Seongsan Ilchulbong (Sunrise Peak) since we wanted to climb it early the next day.

20160616_155714

Our room at Ilchulsun Pension House, Jeju. It comes with heated floors.

In Seoul, we rented out an apartment in Gangseo-gu via Airbnb for four nights which costs Php 2,313/night. Read my review of the Airbnb apartment here.

Total accommodation cost: Php13,607

Food

20160619_134318

This meal is definitely worth every krw!

Amazingly, food in Korea does not cost much. You can eat a decent meal for Php 350-450 or less. In our case, we spend less on breakfast and lunch and then splurge on dinner. Our budget for food is Php 1700/day.

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KFC (Korean Fried Chicken), Cheese Tteokkboki and Udon makes one hungry…

Total food cost: Php 11,900

 Transportation

We used public transportation (subway, bus) during our stay so we purchased a T-money card. This card costs Php 160 and we loaded it for Php 1,000 each. You can get this card at any convenience store at Incheon Airport. The card works just like the Octopus card in Hong Kong.

Buses are the main modes of transport in Jeju. Luckily, we were still able to use our T-money card there. You only cannot use the card when you ride the airport limousine.

Here is a breakdown of our transportation costs:

T-money card with load good for 7 days: Php 2,320

Airport Limousine to Seogwipo, Jeju: Php 440

Cab to Jeongbang Falls: Php 200

Cab to Seogwipo Bus Station: Php 200

Total Transportation cost: Php 3,160

Attractions and Entrance Fees

Jeju Attractions

Since we only have 2 days to explore the island, we were only able to see a few tourist attractions.

Cheonjiyeon Falls: Php 160

Jeongbang Falls: Php 160

Seogwipo Olle Market: Free

Sea-Yeon Bridge: Free

Seongsan Ilchulbong: Php 160

back down

Seongsan Ilchulbong

Seoul Attractions

We have very nice friends in Seoul who offered to tour us around so we ended up not having to pay for most attractions on our first day in Seoul.

Cheonggyecheon Stream: free

Gwanghwamun: Free

Hanbok rental at Hanboknam: c/o Korean friend

Hanbok rentals ranges from Php 500-600

Gyeongbokgung Palace: free if you are wearing a hanbok =)

*Tip: If you feel like you can visit the four Korean palaces in 4 hours, rent a hanbok and purchase an Integrated Palace ticket for Php 431

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NSeoul Tower

NSeoul Tower Cable Car: c/o Korean friend;

EHWA Women’s University: no entrance fee

Teddy Bear Museum Seoul: Php 1,040

Insadong – free

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Selfie at Insadong =P

Ansan Starlight Village: Php 640

Total Attraction Cost: Php 2,160

Grand Total of all Expenses: Php 59,190

If the flights weren’t rebooked the total cost would have only been Php 50,190.

We hope you were able to find inspiration in planning your budget and itinerary for your trip to Seoul! Check out my other posts about our travel to South Korea.

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