Seoul-Incheon International airport, is a major hub in South Korea connecting travelers to several cities and countries in the region and beyond. The airport is located a fair distance away from Seoul and it can take anywhere between 60-90 minutes by public transport. The options to connect from Incheon airport to Seoul city include Airport express train, buses (airport limousines and city buses) and taxis. While the train is normally my preferred mode of transportation, my final destination was Grand Hyatt Seoul hotel which was a taxi ride away from the train station. As it turned out, the airport bus makes an official stop inside the Grand Hyatt hotel so it would be a door to door service!
Incheon airport to Seoul city
Upon clearing customs, I walked across the arrivals hall to the ticket counter and scoped my city transit options. The person at the desk informed me that Grand Hyatt hotel was an official stop on the bus route and would be a better option. These direct buses from Incheon to Seoul are also called Limousine buses and have designated drop-off and pick-up locations in the city. They are different from city buses that make several stops and take much longer to get to Seoul.
I was able to buy a ticket for the airport limousine bus using my credit card, and it cost me 16,000 Won (~$14 USD). Two key pieces of information on that ticket were marked by the attendant issuing the ticket, the bus stop number (10B) and the bus route number (6702).
Armed with my ticket I exited the doors and walked over to the pillar/post that read 10B, the same side of the curb as the exit doors. Once at the bus stop, I scanned the map for route 6702 and was able to confirm that Grand Hyatt hotel was a legit stop on this route. The display also laid out the bus timings for each hour, in my case was 19:19 and 19:45, as highlighted.
Ticket vending machines were also available along the curb. Credit cards were the only mode of payment and they obviously didn’t have a human being for further directions. Given this was first time at Incheon airport, I was glad I bought my ticket inside and could get additional directions from an attendant.
Curbside limousine attendants were also present and directing passengers, helping them navigate the bus stops and routes. Note that while they were Korean airways employees, you dont have to be traveling KE to avail the KAL limousine bus services.
My bus was running 10 minutes late and we were promptly informed by the employees in advance. Once the bus pulled up at the bus stop, the driver verified and collected my ticket before boarding.
The bus was temperature controlled and the leather seats were spacious and comfortable. While my ticket indicated a seat number, I could not find seat assignments on the bus so I picked a window seat and settled in for the ride.
The seats were well appointed, clean and offered plenty of leg room and recline.
The bus unfortunately did not have WiFi service, but was comfortable enough to stretch and snooze for the hour long drive. Once we entered the city, the bus made several stops at city hotels including one at Grand Hyatt Seoul, my final destination.
My return journey to the airport was on the bus as well. I bought the return ticket from the hotel during check-out, before hopping on the bus right outside the hotel door.
While express train would have been a tad quicker, airport limousine bus was an ideal way to get into Seoul city since it provided a door to door experience. Its best to map your hotel and figure out the distance from Seoul train station if you plan to take the train instead. If your hotel is listed as a stop on the bus route or is a walking distance from one, I would recommend the airport bus limousine for a seamless transit.
If you have taken the airport bus limousine or another transit option, share with a comment below.