Buying a SIM card at Jeju International Airport (CJU) 2024: Travelers Guide

If you are traveling to Jeju, South Korea, and need a means of internet connection, consider using a SIM card. At Jeju Airport, you can easily purchase a SIM card to stay connected during your visit.

This article will guide you on buying a SIM card at Jeju International Airport once you arrive and give you some advice on alternatives to staying connected while traveling in Jeju that will help save you money and time. 

Keep reading to learn how to buy a SIM card at Jeju Airport for tourists so you can stay connected and make the most of your trip to Jeju. Let’s start!

Buy sim card at Jeju airport

I. Why Buy a SIM Card in Jeju?

When traveling in Jeju, you have different options to stay connected, such as using free WiFi, renting or buying pocket WiFi, roaming with your primary SIM card, or getting a SIM card/eSIM for South Korea. However, getting a local SIM card is highly recommended for several reasons.

  • It helps you avoid high roaming charges, 
  • It ensures better security for your private information compared to public WiFi, and 
  • It eliminates the need to rent or buy a pocket WiFi device. 

South Korean SIM cards offer reliable coverage, fast data speeds, and unlimited 4G data.

▶ Our recommendation:

  • If you only need internet access, choose a prepaid data-featured SIM card.
  • If you also need to make outbound calls, go for a prepaid SIM with data and voice/text
  • If your phone is compatible with eSIM, choose it to avoid hassles related to the physical one, such as swapping SIM, waiting for SIM delivery. See our full list of eSIM-compatible devices.

Important Note: Before buying a SIM card, make sure that your phone is unlocked so it can work with South Korea cellular network carriers.

II. Where to buy a SIM card at Jeju Airport (CJU)?

Rank of airports in South Korea
Rank of airports in South Korea (source: wikipedia)

Despite the fact that Jeju is the 2nd largest airport in South Korea, there is ONLY ONE South Korean mobile network operator selling SIM cards for tourists at Jeju International Airport (CJU) – SK Telecom. 

Location: Gate 5 at International Arrivals hall

Opening hours: 7 am – 16 pm

Pick up SIM card at Jeju international airport

It was noted that you CANNOT GET SIM CARDS at the domestic terminal of Jeju International Airport. It also applies for SIM cards at convenience stores like CU, 7-Eleven, and Olive Young at domestic terminals.

However, luckily Jeju International airport is not like other airports in South Korea such as Busan-Gimhae International Airport. It has a convenient setup where the arrival halls of the domestic and international terminals are connected. It means passengers will not have to take a bus or any other form of transportation to transfer between the two airports. The walk between these two terminals are covered and easily accessible. 

As an international passenger, it does not matter that you fly from abroad to Jeju airport or take a domestic flight from Seoul Incheon / Seoul Gimpo / Busan Gimhae airport to Jeju airport, the interconnection of two arrivals halls makes your travel more convenient. 

Where can you locate the SK Telecom stand?

If you come from the international arrivals hall:

  • To find it, simply turn right from the international arrival gate, which is located behind the escalators and elevators in front of you.
  • Alternatively, you can also head towards the exit (gate 5) first and then make a right turn.

If you come from the domestic arrivals hall: 

  • take a walk straight towards gate 5 (just 3-5 minutes)
  • The SK Telecom stand is in the corner
Map of Jeju International airport 1 - buy sim at Jeju airport
Map of Jeju International airport – Gate 5 (source: airport.co.kr)
Map of Jeju International airport – Gate 1-4 (source: airport.co.kr)

Important Note:

  • Because the SK Telecom booth has limited opening hours, chances are if your flight lands outside of these hours, you cannot buy a SK Telecom SIM card at the airport. 

  • A perfect alternative is to buy South Korea eSIM either in advance or upon arrival as long as you have Internet access to download the QR code (you can use free Wifi at the airport).

III. Best SIM Cards Plans of SK Telecom at Jeju International Airport + Price

Note: SK Telecom restricts the speed of tourist SIM card plans at 10 Mbps.

SK telecom at Jeju airport

SK Telecom provides its tourist SIM card plans at the same standard  throughout the country (both in terms of plan features and prices)

Here are tourist SIM packages of SK Telecom at Jeju International Airport:

PriceData (throttled at 10 Mbps)Validity
6600 KRWUnlimited1 day
18 000 KRWUnlimited3 days
27 500 KRWUnlimited5 days
38 500 KRWUnlimited10 days
60 500 KRWUnlimited20 days
71 500 KRWUnlimited30 days
  • SIM from SK Telecom does not allow users to make calls/send SMS (this is unlike that of KT South Korea and LG U+)
  • You still get a South Korean Phone Number from SK Telecom SIM plans to receive calls and SMS.
  • The 1-day plan does not come with a phone number.

Our recommendation: 

  • If your phone does not support eSIM, and you go for SK Telecom, it is recommended to buy a SK Telecom SIM card online, before departure
  • If your phone supports eSIM, it is best to buy South Korea eSIM. 

III. How much does a SIM card cost at Jeju Airport?

how much does a South Korea sim card at jeju airport south korea

The SIM card plan for travelers of SK Telecom range in price from 6600 KRW (5.05 USD) to 71500 KRW. The cost depends on factors like the plan features, the validity.

The validity for these plans can range from 1 day up to 30 days (60 days validity has coming).

IV. What to Prepare for Getting a SIM Card at Jeju Airport – Registration Process

To buy South Korea SIM card at Jeju airport, customers need to prepare: 

  • Passport for identification verification
  • Cash (in Korean Won) or card for payment
  • Unlocked phone

The process of registering will take about 1-2 minutes

Factors to consider before buying a SIM card at Jeju Airport:

  • Check if your phone is unlocked
  • Decide whether or not you need to make outbound calls. The plans that have no features of making outbound calls are much cheaper. 
  • Check the time your flight lands: be aware of the opening hours of kiosks at the airport. For example, KT South Korea’s kiosk just opens from 6 am to 11pm. If you arrive after 11pm, then you can still order it online but have to pick the SIM at the store in Myeongdong or Hongdae.

Our recommendation: To avoid this registration scheme, consider buying eSIM for South Korea. This can be done online before departure or after arrival.

V. Best Mobile Networks in Jeju – Coverage & Speed

As mentioned earlier, there are 3 major mobile network providers in South Korea:

  • SK Telecom,
  • KT South Korea
  • LG U+

Besides, there are also other mobile virtual network operators in South Korea.

Because you are going to travel to Jeju, it is not necessary to worry about coverage and speed of the Internet here. All Internet providers offer good coverage and high speed data in the capital of South Korea. 

Therefore, it does not matter which provider you choose, it matters now which provider has plans that suit your needs. 

Refer the images below to understand more about these 3 mobile network operators, their coverage map and speed in Jeju:

Mobile experience awards of mobile network carriers in south korea
Mobile experience awards of mobile network carriers in South Korea by June 2023 (Source: Opensignal)
5G availability of kt south korea, lg uplus, sk telecom in south korea
5G availability of KT South Korea, LG U+ and SK Telecom in South Korea (Source: Opensignal) 

Our recommendation: According to Opensignal, among these South Korea cellular network operators, SK Telecom has the best overall performance (the most consistent experience, fastest 5G experience, in addition to other awards). 

Thus, it is recommended to choose SKT for your trip to South Korea. 

VI. Prepaid eSIM data plan – an Alternative to Prepaid SIM Card Jeju

This option is always available no matter where you are. Buying a prepaid eSIM data plan allows you to skip the hassle of finding a physical SIM card at the airport.

You can land at the Jeju airport and feel confident that you have Internet access right after arrival. The data connection of eSIM plan will be on your phone automatically as long as it connects with the South Korean network operator. 

To buy eSIM for South Korea, you can choose Gigago – one of the best eSIM providers in the world. Plans of Gigago eSIM are considered the most diversifying in comparison with others. 

For South Korea, Gigago offers multiple data plan options, starting from a 3-day plan with 1GB of data per day for $5.90 as their most minimal plan. They also have 5-day, 7-day, 10-day, 15-day, 20-day, and 30-day plans ranging from 1GB to unlimited data per day, with prices from $5.90 up to $106.50.

Once you have purchased the plan, you can activate it by scanning a QR code directly using your phone camera. It will automatically load on your device. That’s simple.

To see more details about plan features and price, check this Gigago South Korea eSIM for travelers.

VII. FAQs about Jeju Airport SIM Card Buying

Can I buy a SIM card at Jeju airport at night?

It depends on the company. KT’s booths are open from 6am to 11pm. Other companies are open 24/7. Check hours with your provider before you go.

How much do SIM cards at Jeju airport cost?

Prices usually range from $5 to $110 depending on the plan and how long it lasts.

How long do SIM cards from Jeju airport last?

SIM cards last from 1 day to 3 months depending on what you pay for.

Are there other places to get a SIM card in Jeju besides the airport?

Yes, you can also find SIM cards at local cell phone stores or buy them online.

What do I need to buy a SIM card at Jeju airport?

They may ask to see your passport when you buy. Have a copy and any ID with you just in case.

Can I use a SIM card from Jeju airport elsewhere in Korea?

Yes, a SIM card from the Jeju airport will work in other cities around South Korea without issues.

VIII. Conclusion

We talked about getting a SIM card at Jeju International Airport. It can be quick to buy there but the price is usually higher than other places. You could also think about getting an eSIM. An eSIM works just like a regular SIM but you don’t have to go anywhere to activate it. You’ll still be able to use your phone like normal with an eSIM. Make sure to get everything set up before your trip so you don’t have any problems while traveling