Traveling with your pets in Korea? This article will tell you how whether you are traveling by taxi, train or just walking in Korea no matter how big they are. Also get recommendations on hotels in Seoul and Busan and what you may need to stay with your pets. Pet Friendly advice for people living in Korea.
Parenting a Fur Baby
This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart because, as many of you know already, I am the proud parent of several furry children including Lucy a 12-year-old beagle mix that traveled with us from the United States to Korea. One of the best things about raising a puppy is the unconditional love that they provide. Lucy is always the first to greet me when I come home and is always incredibly excited with her tail wagging non-stop. This can be both good and bad because as happy as she is when we come home, she is also just as sad when we leave. Now thankfully Lucy’s anxiety does not cause her to misbehave or damage the house but nonetheless, leaving her behind when we take a trip can be very difficult for her.
As a result, we have always tried to find ways to integrate Lucy into our travel plans and she has become a pro when it comes to travel situations, especially here in Korea. One of the big challenges we have had though is figuring out how to bring Lucy with us when we do not drive here. This article will discuss some of the things we have learned and will hopefully help you to find ways to have more adventures with your furry friends as well!!!
Walking your Dog
There are a couple of things you need to consider before taking your dog around town. In 2021, a bill was passed requiring all dog owners to use leases no more than 2 meters in length and if you have a dog that is considered a fierce breed, you must insure your pet against attacks. Also, all dogs should wear a name tag with their owner’s contact information clearly listed. To avoid issues, be sure that you heed these basic rules.
For more information check out the following link: https://en.yna.co.kr/view/AEN20210209002000320
In addition, you are expected to pick up after your pet, so be sure to carry some eco-friendly waste bags. One of the biggest challenges for conscientious pet owners here in Korea is learning where to dispose your dog’s waste. Keep your eye out for bus stops as they often have trash cans nearby.
Taking Taxis with your Pet
While walking around the neighborhood is fun, at some point you will likely get bored and want to try exploring a bit further away from your home. In this case, consider purchasing a doggy stroller, if you have a small dog, a carrying case will usually work for you. To take your pet in a taxi, most drivers will require the dog to be in some type of a carrier if they are willing to take them at all.
If you have a large dog like us, these can be difficult to find. For us, we are lucky that Lucy is not too big and only weighs about 25-30 kg, This allowed us to use the largest stroller sold at Molly’s pet supply and while Lucy is just over the weight limit, it has worked well for us the past few years. The stroller has two pieces, the case and the stroller wheel assembly. They come apart to allow us to put Lucy in the back of a taxi in the carrier and place the wheel assembly in the trunk. Larger models are available online through either Coupang or Amazon. They can be a bit pricey though.
While they are expensive, the strollers are very much worth it as it allows you to not only travel in taxis but also on the train and even into some stores and restaurants. Trust me, if your dog is used to going everywhere with you, this is a “MUST-PURCHASE”.
Unfortunately, having a carrier does not mean that a taxi is always going to agree to let you ride with your dog. You are likely going to have to flag several down and ask the driver nicely. Don’t be upset if they say “No” realize that they have a job to do and may simply be afraid their next customers could have allergies. They also may fear dogs, Either way, try to be understanding, it will get you a lot farther toward your eventual goal.
If you don’t like the thought of drivers saying “No” but still have to get from point “A” to Point “B” there is finally another great way to get a taxi… Sign up for Kakao Taxi and take advantage of the pet option. Review the photo above to see where it is. This option allows you to make a reservation for a taxi that will allow pets for a fee. It can be more expensive but is much less of a hassle.
Taking the Train with your Pet
Taking a small dog or cat on a train is pretty straight forward, if the carrier fits on your lap you can simply bring them along as baggage. For bigger dogs though, it can be more of a challenge. What we typically do is try to reserve the front seat and simply place the carriage in front of us, however, this is not always possible. Another option is to buy standing room only and stay in between the train cars with you furry friend. This is typically available most of the time and for a short ride is not a bad option.
For those who may be a bit older or who may have some difficulty standing for long periods there is a third option as well. We sometimes book passage in first class as the space between each row of the seats is bigger and Lucy’s carriage actually fits so it does not block the passageway. The drawback is that you have to purchase the extra seat because it becomes unusable. In our case, this means buying three first class train tickets instead of two and that can get kinda pricey. Nonetheless, it is an option for you in a pinch.
Staying in a Hotel
So, as you may have learned already, many hotels in Korea do not accept pets. Fortunately, this is changing quickly as Korean’s love for animals continues to be a strong cultural trend. If you look hard, you can find hotels in many different price ranges that will accommodate our furry friends in most cities. One thing to remember though, is that there will likely be an extra pet fee and also you will need to bring up to date vaccination records as well. At least the first time you stay.
Fraser Place in Seoul
Our favorite Pet friendly hotel in Seoul is Fraser Place. The rooms are amazing and the staff are unbelievably friendly. especially to their furry guests. The hotel located just down the street from the Train station and a short walk to the city center and the famous Myeongdong shopping district. I suggest you rent the apartments as they are a bit roomier and at least for our fur daughter, seem to make her a bit more relaxed. To her it is just like staying at a friends house.
See the following link for information regarding the hotel: https://www.frasershospitality.com/en/south-korea/seoul/fraser-place-central-seoul/?utm_source=sojern&utm_campaign=FPCentralSeoul&utm_medium=cpc&utm_content=PayOnTheStay&gclid=Cj0KCQiA6LyfBhC3ARIsAG4gkF-Kej7CxQJnGxuK6l0icY8O9eYIj7SDNET5-W6xQJ0cEjiiRp-gqsAaAqr6EALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds
Petel in Busan
When we go to Busan, the main goal of our visit is usually to enjoy the beach and with that in mind, our favorite pet friendly hotel is Petel. It is jus a few minute walk to Haeundae Beach and just like Fraser, the staff are incredibly pet friendly and usually there is a golden retriever there to greet your furry kids and show them around. The hotel has lots of pet amenities like a pet wading pool, and the hotel provided us with a doggy bed and bowl for our daughter. If you are a cat lover, they also provide cat litter boxes, bowls and cat toys including a cat tower for them to play while you are out exploring. Does your pet get nervous while you are away? No problem, they even have a day care center.
Please see the following link for more information: https://the-petel.busan-hotel.com/en/
Looking for information about a long trip with your pet? Want to know more about the challenges of traveling cross-country by car in the US? Then check out the following link: https://www.chasingwonderful.com/writing/road-trip-with-pets?fbclid=IwAR23JGo6NFQkjOyeaeuM_VccgNnFBlaetdd1HQ9-OeNgpDIav6LzDs9qcA8
So, that does it for this article, I hope it provides you with the information you need to make you and your pet’s stay in Korea a bit more exciting. Don’t live in Korea, no worries, try to see how traveling with your pet works wherever you are and tell us about what you find in the comments below. If you are from Korea and have taken your pet to another hotel, please tell us about that as well. For me this is all about sharing information that allows us to find ways to live a better life and I for one am always happy to learn something new. Well that’s it for now, if you enjoyed the article, please hit like, comment below and consider following my Blog as I explore more way to “Live Life one Moment at a TIme”