Renting a phone in Korea will come in very handy if you are visiting on a business or a short trip to Korea. It can be used to keep in touch with friends, make reservations or in case of an emergency. Korea is a CDMA based network and most foreign phones won’t work here.
Where to rent a cell phone in Korea:
As most tourists arrive to Korea through Incheon Internationl Airport you will find many Mobile Rental Shops here. Also there are some located at Gimhae International Airport, Jeju International Airport, Gwangju International Airport and Busan Port. If you are already in Seoul you can visit this shop which rents phones http://www.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/RE/RE_EN_1_2_1_5.jsp Phones can be rented on the spot and no reservation is needed.
What do I need to rent a phone?
You will need your passport and a credit card. If you don’t have a credit card, some companies will let you rent your phone with a deposit. Usually the deposit is expensive, about 800,000 won.
How much will it cost?
There are many phone rental companies so I will give you the average price. The phones are rented daily and cost between 1,500 – 5,000 won a day. Calls in Korea are charged at about 600 won a minute and text messages are charged at 100 won per text. To receive calls or texts is free. Some of the phone companies require you to pay for the daily rental fee upfront with your credit card and when you return the phone you can pay the phone call charges by cash or card. Other companies will just keep your credit card on file and you can pay everything by cash when you return the phone. If you rent the phone for a period of 10 days or more, most companies will give a discount.
Visit this site to reserve your phone before you arrive http://www.sroaming.co.kr/En/mobile-rental-fee/mobile-phone-fee.asp
You must return the phone to the original shop that you rented it from. If you lose the phone you must pay to replace the handset which costs about 400,000 won.