Seoul Trip 2015: Seoul Subway Adventures [★]

September 20, 2015

Our trip to Seoul this year gave me lots of happy memories. One of our fondest moments were actually at the subway. Our rides in between the districts of Seoul proved to be an adventure and an attraction itself. We were actually intimidated to ride the intricate subway lines at first, but surprisingly after the first few rides, we immediately got the hang of it. :D

Here are some of the things that we have learned during our subway adventures:

People do not usually hold onto the railings. Even if the train got a bit wobbly and they lost their balance and their wearing high heels(!), they don't seem to panic and hold onto the bars or railings of the train. I even saw one 할아버지 (grandfather) reading a thick book while standing up. Because I'm mostly used to how the MRT operates in my country, I always had my hands grasping the railings. (−_−;)

Chivalry is not a thing. This is so true. Men and women are equal at their subways. If my memory is right, I didn't see even a single scenario when someone offered their seat to another passenger. Oh well, maybe our timing was just not right.

Koreans love looking at their phones. Subway rides could take hours so Koreans have mastered the art of keeping themselves busy by always looking at their phones. I even saw one woman watching a cooking show on her phone.

Plastic surgery ads are a common sight. I knew beforehand that plastic surgery was common in Korea, but I never knew that it was so common they have lots of ads everywhere, and especially on subways! This proves that the practice has been really widely accepted in the country. That's one culture shock that I've had in Seoul.

You can spot your favorite artists on subway ads! Whether it was a member's birthday or the group is busy with a concert, it's expected to have KPOP ads on the subway. These are mostly the doings of very loyal fans. I saw two of these kind of ads, one was for Xiumin's (EXO) birthday and the other one was for EunHae's concert in Japan.

Can you see what I'm seeing? xD

Koreans are always in a hurry at subway transfers, because they are catching the next train to arrive on the other line. So if you are on your way to transferring on another train line and still confused on which direction to go. don't block their way and stand near a corner while you figure your way out. Else, they might accidentally push you or worse, get pissed at you for being on their way.

Be prepared to walk a lot on escalators and stairs. Also, always remember to stay on the right side when riding the escalator because the left side is reserved for rushing passengers (related to the point above).

There are interesting things to see in-between the line transfers. If you are not in a hurry, you may want to check out some exhibits in display on some of their subway transfers and stations.

Paintings on display at Seoul station

There are so many cute Koreans riding the subway. Me and my sister spotted a lot of kpop-face-worthy males in the subway. This got us entertained actually during the longer rides. xD

We had so much fun riding the subway. It was our main of transportation throughout Seoul during our stay. I believe we already mastered how to ride it. xD

One tip for you: if you are coming to Seoul too, download the Jihachul app especially if you need to ride the subway. It is sooo helpful. It was actually the main reason why our subway rides became smooth and stress-free! It's available on Apple Store and Google Play.

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