I love my Apple products and these days, I find, I can’t live without my iPod Touch (read my post here). Living in Korea, I’ll tell you why… I want easy and convenient access to Korean information and I want it in English.
Essential Mobile Apps for Korea
#1. Subway in Korea Lite (aka KorSubway)
What’s more frustrating than having to spend time searching for your station on a map when you’re in a rush? With KorSubway, my eyes don’t get crazed out with b.s. visuals, while searching for my stops. KorSubway‘s butt-simple visuals makes finding metro connections fast, easy… a snap!
This handy map has been my #1 tool for getting around (though Jihachul may eventually replace it). It has the metros lines for major Korean cities and a finger swipe navigates you through them, allowing you to zoom in and out for an easy read. Settings are in both, Korean and English. Cost: Free
Seoul’s metro system occasionally elicits a scream from me when I’m routing my connections and transfers. Jihachul takes that frustration away and does it for you. Tap on your starting station and your destination; it’ll spit out the quickest route to get you to your destination and even tell you what car number to stand at or jump onto for quick and easy transfer. Best of all, it works offline!
Originally mentioned by Traveling Man at Hi-Expat, it’s become my strongest “go to” when I visit Seoul, but it’ll also map Daegu, Busan, Daejeon and Gwangju. Speedy and efficient routing is what it offers upfront, but then it goes deeper. Maps are nice (KTX trains and major stations are in bold distinction, it includes above-ground exit maps and you can bookmark your favorite stations). This app is the best mapping for metro Korea I’ve seen yet!
It’s hard to imagine this gem of an app is still free. So grab it now! Cost: Free
#3. Travel Korean Tourism
If you’re new to Korea or just wondering what touristy thing to do for the weekend, check this out. The Korean Tourism Organization (website here) threw together a simple app to give you a sightseeing key to the city. This pocket guidebook has information on some of their popular sights and it’s packed with searches, such as film/drama locations, spas, resorts, world heritage sights…a lot.
However, although this guidebook is for tourists, the fact it categorizes site listings by region (vs. by city), doesn’t make it as user-friendly as one would hope. Another thing to wish list, is that it would give us directions to the locations! Nevertheless, this tool is handy pocket guidebook to what you can see or do in Korea. Cost: Free
#4. Korean Food
If you’re a food lover and want to sample Korean foods, this is perfect for you. As a Korean Food dictionary with pictures, this handy application ROCKS! Bigtime.
If you’re new to Korean food, pay the dollar and download this. Loaded with pictures, descriptions and a mini phrasebook, this guide puts a face to the name and decodes the mystery.
In the mood for something sweet or salty? There’s a ‘category sorter’, which recommends morsels your taste buds could be pining for! Cost: 99 cents
Have a favorite Korea iPhone/iPod apps you can’t live without?