Seoul’s Newest High-speed Railway “SRT” Opens

Looking for SRT timetables? Check our SRT page

This morning Seoul’s newest high-speed rail service,  the “SRT”,  finally opened for commercial service from Suseo Station in Gangnam, Seoul.

The new connection, operated by Korail subsidiary “SR” (Supreme Railways) provides a much needed rail link for the south-eastern areas of Seoul and Gyeonggi-do. Up until now, residents in these areas have had to spend extra time traveling to Seoul or Yongsan stations in order to use high-speed trains. It will also be extremely useful for those traveling to Gangnam locations for business, as up until now buses had been the best way to get directly to this area.

Suseo SRT

Suseo Station prior to opening.

The three stations on the line are Suseo, Dongtan and Jije (Pyeongtaek), and after that it connects with the main high-speed line which KTXs use. SRT services don’t travel to all parts of the high-speed network, and passengers will need to transfer if heading to certain stations such as Yeosu or Changwon.  Tickets for SRT services went on sale near the end of last month and prices are generally cheaper than the KTX.

Some media outlets have mentioned that the SRT is “faster” than the KTX. It’s important to note that it is only the travel time that is faster due to the more southern location of the station, plus it doesn’t have to reduce speed when entering Seoul like the KTX does. Like the KTX, SRT trains travel up to 300km/h.SRT Map

The fastest trip to Busan from Suseo is a mere 2 hours and 9 minutes, and 2 hours 6 minutes from Busan to Mokpo. However, most trips will take longer than this and how long yours takes depends on the service and how many stops there are.

Construction on the project began in 2011 and features Korea’s longest tunnel at 52.3km, also making it one of the longest rail tunnels in the world. Only 7% of the 61.1km line is above ground, and Dongtan Station is Korea’s first high-speed train station to have been built completely underground, with the train platforms located six floors down.

SRT services use KTX-Sancheon rolling stock, with 10 brand new trains in operation, plus 22 trains leased from Korail which will eventually be acquired by SR before the year is over.

SRT KTX

The SRT uses KTX-Sancheon trains and travels at the same speed as the KTX.

Over the past decade, high-speed services have become increasingly popular and the opening of the SRT means a 43% increase in the total number of high-speed services nationwide during the weekend.

 

Subsidized Commuter SRT Service for Dongtan Residents

Dongtan residents will have the luxury of being able to commute to Seoul via the SRT at the subsidized price of 3000won until the GTX project is complete. In an agreement between the Korea Land and Housing Corporation (LH), KR and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, one commuter service will operate each way on weekdays.

The morning train from Dongtan leaves at 7:10am, arriving at Suseo at 7:25am. The evening train back leaves Suseo Station at 6:50 and arrives in Dongtan at 7:05. This schedule should give commuters enough time to travel to and from their workplace within Seoul.

 

For more information see our previous posts about the construction, preparations for opening and delay to opening.

About This Author

Originally from New Zealand, Andy moved to Korea in 2007 and very quickly became interested in the many different public transport and urban development projects around Korea. He currently lives in Sejong city and is particularly interested in rail projects, transport hubs and technology.

6 Comments

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  • Thanks Andy! Great news for my friends in Gangnam. I just sent this article to them.

    I found an article that talks a little by about the SR company that will operate the new service. And it also mentions some other interesting developments in Eurasia. http://www.railjournal.com/index.php/asia/korea-prepares-for-competition.html?channel=000

    Thanks again, Andy, for the great information you provide.

    James 11 months ago Reply


    • Given that how N. Korea behaves, I am afraid it’s unlikely that S. Korea will have any terrestial connection with any other country in the near future. :/

      However, the SRT is welcome and I am looking forward to the further expansion of the railway system.

      George 10 months ago Reply


    • Hi James – Just realised I never got back to you. Yup, we are also contributors to IRJ but joined just after that article was published. Definitely gives a good insight.

      Andy Tebay 10 months ago Reply


  • I would love to try SRT. I will need to travel from Busan Station to Seoul Station. SRT doesn’t stop at Seoul Station. How and where should I make a transfer? Will the fare be cheaper or more expensive if I make a transfer?

    Kristin Ling 10 months ago Reply


    • Hi Kristin. I haven’t done the math and imagine most people wouldn’t bother transferring. But, if you may indeed be able to travel from Busan to Cheonan-Asan Station and then get a KTX from there to Seoul Station for a cheaper total price than just getting a KTX direct. I recommend using the website or apps to check the prices and times for each. Remember that not all trains stop at Cheonan-Asan so you may need to calculate it based on transferring at Osong or Daejeon depending on the time of your train. The SRT service isn’t too different from the KTX (the use the same trains) but it does have more legroom.

      kojects 10 months ago Reply


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