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Everything You Need to Know About Ulsan

Replacing a Drivers License

As a Canadian I am used to standing in lines for extremely long periods of time for just about everything. However, I was pleasantly surprised this past Saturday as renewed my Korean Drivers License in a record amount of time. I was so happy in fact that I tried to run every red light on my way home to show off my new license to any officer that would dare pull me over. Alas, there were no takers.

Ulsan’s Drivers License Testing Agency is located in Eonyang, just outside of Ulsan on your way to Gajisan. If you head out there, it may be a little confusing to find because the signs don’t appear until you are actually almost at the office. The easiest way to find it is when you arrive in Eonyang on HWY #24, head past the construction for the new KTX terminal and then take left at the SK gas station. Follow the river until you are just outside of Eonyang. The Ulsan Drivers License Testing Agency is on your left. It is the white building with the web address printed across the top of the building.

Now to set the scene, I had already got my license about 6 years ago. I had also gained weight, changed addresses, renewed my passport and changed my alien card about 5 times since then. I was expecting a lot of questions and a lot of waiting. I came prepared; the iPhone was charged, I brought some Korean books to study and something to munch on while I waited.

Before I could even finish writing my name on the application I was called up. I explained that I lost my wallet and needed a new license. The lady asked it if was an International, I said that it was Korean. She told me to finish writing my name and address. I gave her my 3 photos and 6,000 won and sat down to wait. The lady said it would take about 10 minutes, but I wasn’t going to hold my breath. I cracked open my can of coffee and prepared for a long wait. Before I got 3 sips in I was called back up. There was my new license.

Before you go out here is what you need:

1) Basic knowledge of Korean. Nothing is in English and the clerks only speak a little so any help that you can offer will help speed things along.

2) 3 4×3 photos taken within the last year (of you) with a neutral background. Koreans call these “sahm-sa sajin” and can be taken at most photo shops.

3) Passport and alien card.

4) 6,000 won

That is it, and it takes less than 10 minutes. Again, this is for the replacement of a lost or stolen card. Should you need to get a brand new one, it can be done quite easily by surrendering your valid drivers license from home. Eatyourkimchi.com has a great video on how to get your license (better if we lived in Incheon) but it gives you a great idea of what to expect. Check out their great video here.

The web address that I mentioned was printed across the top of the building actually has a great English site that provides a lot of great information about most things related to driving in Korea. Check it out here.

Happy motoring!

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