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A Digital Nomad Guide To Seoul, South Korea

Digital nomad guide where to live and work in Seoul, South Korea. The best coworking spaces and living areas in Seoul.

A Digital Nomad Guide To Seoul

Best Time to visit

In terms of affordability, Seoul is the cheapest in the months of January, March, November, and October. Said months are most likely the coldest too. If your priority is to avoid crowds, see snowfalls, and lessen the costs, prepare yourself for a chilly winter experience!

For the best views and weather: visit Seoul in the months between March and May when it is post-winter to early Spring. Or the fall/autumn season from September through October. These months are also Cherry blossom season for the former, and Autumn foliage for the latter. Both of which are spectacular sights that everyone hopes to see and experience!

The downside is that these months are the most expensive and most crowded too. Though can be mitigated by planning properly!

Cost of Living

The cost of living for a month in Seoul including accommodation, food, transportation, and entertainment, is around $1400 – $2000. A studio apartment in the cheapest districts like Seongbok-gu, Kangbok-gu, or Dobong-gu, costs around 550,000 KRW to 800,000 KRW ($485 USD to $800 USD), home-cooked food expenses are around 300,000 KRW to 500,000 KRW ($265 USD to $380USD), transportation costs via railways are around 40,000 KRW (approximately $35 USD), and entertainment expenses like Karaoke rooms (locally referred to as Noraebang) of 100,000 KRW (approximately $88 USD).

Finding Accommodation

It is easy to find accommodations in Seoul. I recommend that you book one online before your trip. You can book via Airbnb, Klook.com, Traveloka, and so much more. Using these websites still gives you a bunch of options, from contemporary and modern rooms to traditional homes called Hanok Homes. Plus with these, you can get discounts too!

Another recommendation is that you choose an area near the Metro Stations. Aside from easier transportation to other areas, being near the Metro Stations means you are also near commercial establishments like malls, public/night markets, and co-working spaces!

Where to Live in Seoul?

Yes, it is the most obvious answer, but honestly, rightfully so. Seoul is one of the most developed cities in Asia and the most developed city in South Korea. South Korea’s capital has everything from tall skyscrapers to beautiful parks. 

It is home to almost 10 million people, and most of its residents speak English. So communicating and getting around would not be an issue in Seoul. However, elderly taxi drivers will always be an exception. You could have trouble interacting with them as they only speak Korean. 

Seoul has some of the best and most diverse food options in the entire country. Whether it be something as westernized as a burger or a more traditional fish cake, you’ll quickly find it all here. Seoul also has some interesting local food choices. These may not satisfy everyone’s palette, but they are worth tasting. 

Moreover, living in Seoul will always keep you entertained. This city never sleeps, so if you are looking for entertainment or food late at night, you will undoubtedly find many options. 

Seoul also has historic architecture for tourists to explore, such as Gyeongbokgung Palace and Bukchon Hanok Village.

Here are the five best places you could crash in Seoul.

1. Itaewon

Itaewon is the central part of Seoul and also the international center. It is full of foreigners. So , English is easily understood and spoken here. It is full of high-rise modern buildings and bustling nightlife.

However, this may not be the best option for experiencing authentic Korean culture. Plus, it is comparatively more expensive as well.

2. Dongdaemun

In Dongdaemun, you’ll find high fashion all around you. The area also has multiple malls, a cultural center, and a design plaza. 

Dongdaemun gives off the big city vibe, like Itaewon, except you also get to interact and intermingle with the locals here. This is where you’ll find some of the country’s most modern and technologically advanced buildings.

3. Gangnam

You’ll surely recognize this name from the famous “Gangnam Style” song. Located in southeast Seoul, Gangnam is the fashion hub of the country. 

There are also many restaurants and bars in the area. Plus, it is cheaper than Itaewon, but not as foreigner friendly.

4. Incheon

Located further outside the city center, Incheon is a much cheaper alternative. Although it is further out, you’ll still find multiple restaurants and local bars here. 

Travel expenses may slightly increase if you constantly travel back and forth between the city center and Incheon. 

5. Hongdae and Mapo

This is the university district of the country. This is an ideal place to live for young digital nomads since you’ll find many people around your age. 

You’ll also find some cheap food options here. Since the more youthful generation mainly occupy this area, there is also some sort of event or concert happening here, so entertainment is taken care of. 

Top 3 Coworking Spaces in Seoul

Seoul is full of passionate entrepreneurs, so being a digital nomad, you’ll fit right into their working scene. 

Coworker helps you find the best coworking spaces near you. In my opinion, the following coworking spaces are a great option:

1. Hive Arena

Hive Arena is probably the best option for digital nomads as it is a coworking and coliving space. 

Their daily passes cost only 9 USD, whereas their monthly passes are 270 USD. Plus, they often have exclusive discounts.

Hive Arena is also an international coworking space, so you’ll interact with foreigners and locals here. Unfortunately, this coworking space is located southwest of Seoul, so traveling to and from the area takes time (if you live in the city center). 

2. WeWork

WeWork is an international coworking space quickly becoming a popular choice amongst remote workers. 

Seoul contains over 10 WeWork venues, so there is a high chance that you’ll find one close to your accommodation. 

WeWork prices are higher, with a simple hotdesk costing 330 USD. However, being a digital nomad, it is recommended that you opt for their membership so you can use their offices across the globe. 

3. JustCo

Although it only has one location in Seoul, JustCo is an excellent option for business-minded individuals and digital nomads.

JustCo does not have any office hours and is open 24/7. This means that you can pull those all-nighters in a more productive space. 

Plus, they often have ongoing social events as well. Their monthly package costs about 333 USD. However, they also have discounts going on.

Getting around Seoul

The transportation system in Seoul is known for its efficiency and convenience. 

  • Metropolitan Subway system. The Metro is very extensive and covers most of the city of Seoul. It is recommended to use apps like GoogleMap or NaverMap to see the directions in English and properly plan out your trips.
  • Buses. Use the app KakaoBus to see the bus schedules, bus stop locations, and bus fares. Data here are always up to date, and directions are easier to understand because it is in English. 
  • Taxis. Taxis are also available in the city. Taxi stands are spread across with their unique logo. But of course, taxis are a bit pricier than the Metro or Buses. 
  • Trains. Long-Distance and Inter-city travel via Trains are also available. Researching their schedules and booking beforehand is still highly recommended.

10 Things to do in Seoul

coming soon

Final Thoughts

Starting in Seoul is a no brainer. Most of the action happens here, and you will be able to work very comfortably.  Check out my Jeju island and Busan  guides. Better yet, check the South Korea digital nomad guide to prepare for your whole trip.

COMMON QUESTIONS ABOUT guide to SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA

Seoul has a wide range of attractions to explore. Some of the must-visit places include Gyeongbokgung Palace, Namsan Tower, Myeongdong Shopping Street, Bukchon Hanok Village, and Insadong.

Seoul has an excellent public transportation system consisting of subway lines, buses, and taxis. The subway network is extensive and convenient, making it the easiest way to get around the city. Taxis are also widely available and can be hailed on the street or through ride-hailing apps.

Absolutely! Seoul offers a wide variety of delicious traditional Korean dishes. Some must-try dishes include bibimbap, bulgogi, kimchi, tteokbokki, and samgyeopsal. Street food in popular areas like Myeongdong and Namdaemun Market is also a must-try for food lovers.

The best time to visit Seoul is during the spring (April to June) and autumn (September to November) seasons. The weather is pleasant, and you can enjoy beautiful cherry blossoms and autumn foliage. Summers can be hot and humid, while winters can be cold, so plan accordingly.

Yes, there are several hidden gems in Seoul that are worth exploring. Some examples include Ikseon-dong Hanok Village, Seonyudo Park, Ihwa Mural Village, and Hongdae Street Art Zone. These places offer a unique and less touristy experience of Seoul.

While knowing some basic Korean phrases can be helpful, it is not necessary to speak Korean to travel to Seoul. Most people in the tourism industry can speak basic English, and signages in popular tourist areas are often translated into English. However, learning a few common Korean phrases can enhance your overall travel experience.

Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above may be affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I earn a commission if you make a purchase.

Start Planning Your south korea Trip Now!

Book Your Flight:

Use Skyscanner to find a cheap flights. A travellers favorite way to book flights, as it searches websites and airlines around the world with one click.

Book Your Bus or Transportation Within South Korea:

There are two ways to book your transporation, ask your hotel or hostel, go to the local bus terminal, or book online, for a less stressful trip using EasyBook or 12go.asia

Book Your Accomodation: 

Find the best hotels or hostels at HostelWorld, Booking.com, Agoda.com. Perks include with no upfront payment. Pay when you check out and Free cancellations.

Dont Forget Your Travel Insurance:

Two popular choices are SafetyWing and WorldsNomads. A traveler should buy traveler’s insurance to protect themselves against unexpected events such as trip cancellations, medical emergencies, and lost or stolen baggage. It provides peace of mind and financial protection in case of unforeseen circumstances.

Useful Apps?

KaokaoBus /K-Eta- Local Transportation

NaverMaps, KaoKaoMaps – GPS

Baemin and Yogiyo  – Food Delivery

T-Money : Payments and Transporation

Papago – Translation

Whatsapp/KaoKao- Communication

Want More Information On South Korea?

Be sure to check out my nomad travel guide on the South Korea for even more tips.

Disclosure: Please note that some of the links above may be affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I earn a commission if you make a purchase.

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Justin Gonzalez

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