Seoul, South Korea Return from Sydney $248.25, Melbourne $272.00 on AirAsia (April) @ Expedia


Yes, Coronavirus. But on the other hand, have you EVER seen it this cheap to South Korea? If you're needing to go anyway…

Also, low cost carrier, so no checked luggage included by default.

Evidence: (Sydney)

Evidence: (Melbourne)

Note: travel insurance is still possible for coronavirus in certain cases

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  • +10 votes

    Cherry blossoms time! The coronavirus has been handled well by SK and the number of cases are dropping daily.

  • +1 vote

    So, given Australia's travel bans, you can get there but not get back?

    • +21 votes

      Travel bans don't apply to Australian citizens or permanent residents

        • +18 votes

          Seriously, downvoted? Do people actually believe that Australians are any less susceptible to picking up this virus in South Korea?

          I think you were downvoted because what you said had nothing to do with the original comment or the reply.

          First, you said "you can get there but can't get back?"

          Then xers said travel bans don't apply to Australian citizens/residents, which addresses your comment directly.

          You then reply sacarstically talking about how anyone can get infected, which had nothing to do with your original comment about not being able to re-enter Australia.

          • +4 votes

            @eug: If the travel bans continue then you can expect to see a decrease or even lack of availability of direct flights back forcing you to stop in another country. Also with the peak approx 14 weeks into an outbreak you can assume that if you do decide to go that you will be forced into a self quarantine for 14 days upon return. The OP didn't word it well but these are well founded worries. I'm also assuming prepaid + this kind of price it will be non refundable which is basically you taking a risk whether your flight will go ahead or not.


              @Manly Black:

              If the travel bans continue then you can expect to see a decrease or even lack of availability of direct flights back forcing you to stop in another country.

              Sure. But my point was that none of that was talked about in the original comment. OP said x, someone replied addressing x, then OP totally ignored x and started talking sarcastically about y.

              The OP didn't word it well

              OP specifically said "given Australia's travel bans…". It is quite clear what the OP is referring to - Australia's travel bans that bans people from certain countries from entering Australia, which does not apply to Australians or residents. So OP's comment saying you can't come back, and that situation being "magic", is incorrect.

              That's it. Everything else you mentioned is valid, but that's not what the OP was talking about.


            @eug: I think he's referring to the people who couldn't get back because of internal travel bans, which is what happened in China. So despite what Australia does or doesn't ban, doesn't really effect you when you're out of Australian jurisdiction. You would be subject to whatever country's laws that you are in.

    • +19 votes

      travel bans are usually for non citizens, i'd be more worried that

      • when you arrive in Korea and they say you need to be quarantined for 2 weeks.
      • denied entry because you are not a citizen and turned away
      • quarantined in Australia for 2 weeks regardless the amount of time you have been in Korea.
      • or you are not a citizen or resident of the country that you are travelling from or to.

      no restrictive travel bans at the moment doesn't mean it will stay that way in April.

      • +1 vote

        when you arrive in Korea and they say you need to be quarantined for 2 weeks.

        This happened to me. I was trying to get a refund for my flight to Japan via Cathay, and for 3 weeks they refused to process my refund request. They had cut a lot of flights including mine and bumped me to the next flight which resulted in an overnight stayover of 13 hours with no compensation. I wanted a refund, and they wouldn't even entertain it.

        Then Japan put a mandatory quarantine on all arrivals from HK, CN, SK and Macao, and this caused Cathay to cancel all flights to Japan, and they were forced to give me a refund. Without this quarantine, they would never have given me a refund.

        So in the case of a quarantine, I would be pretty certain the airline will cancel flights and return your money.

        no restrictive travel bans at the moment doesn't mean it will stay that way in April.

        Very true. There are massive risks in booking holidays today due to very limited insurance cover and rapidly changing CV situation. Pretty soon it will be safer to travel to China than anywhere else. Not even kidding.


      Right of Abode.

  • +22 votes


    We now advise Australians to reconsider travel to South Korea. If you’re returning to Australia from South Korea, as an Australian citizen or permanent resident, you’ll need to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival in Australia. There’s a heightened risk of sustained local transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19). We now also advise you not to travel to Daegu because of the significant outbreak of COVID-19 there. If you’re in South Korea, monitor your health closely and follow the advice of local authorities.

  • +12 votes

    SK is one of the few countries you'd be mad to visit right now

  • +42 votes

    Anyway we can add some legs to this? Im thinking Wuhan and Northern Italy would be magical this time of year.

  • +3 votes

    Not worth the risk at all, travel insurance, having to self isolate. Im also sure your employer would not want you going either. But great for backpackers!

  • +17 votes

    Honestly one of the only places I'd actually consider visiting or even staying for the next few months, South Korea are handling this really well and could make it out of this mess relatively unscathed. Would make for a really unenjoyable holiday though.

    • +1 vote

      We're already booked for October, hoping that they make it through really well (as with all countries)

    • +11 votes

      The reason they have so many reported infections is because of their rigorous testing program.

      Compare that to Indonesia on the other hand

      • +6 votes

        And Japan

        • +6 votes

          Japan is more full of shit than North Korea.

          Their infection rate goes against the charts of the rest of the entire world.

        • +3 votes

          Tokyo announced 0 cases confirmed yesterday. What a surprise.

          If fact, none of residents have screened yesterday in Tokyo area among 30 million residents.

          No test, no confirmed case rise, no patient, no stress.


            @lifeoz: that's what's happening in the USA also. Not enough testing kits. I watched a US doctor interviewed on a news clip say that each testing kit costs $3000, which is crazy and also the reason why there is a shortage of kits. And it has to be paid for by health insurance. If you don't have a job, you don't have insurance.

            I think it's a bit hard for Japan to go around testing 30 million people. It would probably be voluntary testing and people are only going when they have symptoms.


              @lostn: It would be hard for all around the world, but it cannot be an excuse for screening none a day in a mega city like Tokyo.

              Again, no test no case. It does not mean Japan is dealing with covid well. Just like you mentioned about
              the USA.

    • +4 votes

      Agreed. Despite the amount of confirmed cases, Korea have handled it quite well. 99% of people are wearing masks in public, testing 10k+ people per day, good healthcare.

      I'd be more worried about going to US. Orange man has been denying the existence until this week, they've tested absolutely no one and everyone is sprouting "its just the flu bro". Surprised there has been no ban issued for US yet.


        they wouldn't dare.

        Orange man will retaliate against any slight, even if it comes from an ally.

    • +1 vote

      You can actually trace 4,500+ of SKs infections back to a lady known as patient 31 (superspreader) who was asked to get tested twice and refused. In that time she went on a buffet lunch, went to church twice and went on her daily activities. People in that church spread it amongst themselves so most cases were in the city of Daegu. Apparently members of that church also went to a funeral which spread it to other people too.
      SK has done an impressive job tracing the virus, they have tested 200,000+ people and their rate of infection is now 100 cases/day and slowing.

      Iran, the US and the EU have not actively traced the virus and the amount of cases there is exploding.

      So all in all, despite 'official' advice, you're probably better off going on a trip to South Korea than the EU or the USA right now.

      • +2 votes

        contact tracing is an insane task. It's what the Chinese had to do, and the number of people they had to trace is maybe 100 times more people than SK.


          China is a communist country. They have secure system hat trace what you do 24/7 in daily life before the pandemic occurred which would be relatively easy to trace than other countries. Also China had to lockdown Wuhan city by the government whereas in Korea it was a very democratic voluntary recommendation for the people of Daegu not to travel outsideof city.

          Hate to say it but it was also suspected that Chinese government was playing with numbers of deaths and cases confirmed.

  • +1 vote

    Also found April $272 return for MEL-ICN


    Would not go even if it was offered for free … and I grew up there lol

    • +2 votes

      I would. I was in SK during the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic in 2009. Apart from some locals in fear of Foreigners bringing in the virus, had a great time.

      But I already have an Air Asia $124 return flight booked for 4 weeks in Malaysia in June😊


        that's dope man $124 jesus

        • +1 vote

          Air Asia has been offering this price in a few deals in last 2 weeks.
          Current Return prices on sale (may be hard to find now)
          Gold Coast to
          Phuket $123
          Ho Chi Minh City $131
          Kochi $151 etc
          Travel period: 7/9/20 - 1/7/21


            @the INFIDEL: how much do they charge for checked bags for all legs of your trip?

            I see good prices from AA but after adding bags and meals it ends up costing the same as Singapore Airlines.


              @lostn: You're asking the wrong person - I've travelled just with carry on for over a decade.

              Meals are good & cheap compared to other discount airlines. Can add later.

              And I often buy clothes cheap there & give used clothes to the needy at the end of those trips.


                @the INFIDEL: is your carry-on exclusively clothes?

                I don't think I can survive a flight without my noise canceling over-ear headphones, tablet, power bank, cables, etc. I usually bring an ultrabook with me also if I need a computer because I hate tablets.

                • +1 vote

                  @lostn: Not all clothes in carry on. Heaviest clothes & shoes are worn onto plane. Often wear on 2 layers of clothes - out of usual 4 sets of clothes taken. Take off after weighing or on plane.

                  Most of those heavier items will be in my jacket's many large pockets. I mainly take a jacket just for that, but handy if weather turns cold or rainy.

                  Headphones go on head. And buy toothpaste etc there.

                  I also take a compact bag that clips on my day pack - to take the surplus clothes etc when travelling in the country. Also handy to keep things (nibbles, drink, etc) easily available on flight.

                  In most countries, cheap washing services will have your clothes cleaned for you at the end of the day. That limits the need to take many clothes (except for those who follow the demands of fashion). So don't waste time washing - enjoy your stay!

                  Buying local clothes is handy as they suit the climate, you are often better accepted by locals, are cheap, and make good souvenirs.
                  I occasionally wear my colourful lungi (sarongs) from a trip to Myanmar. The locals loved seeing me in their National Dress & even attending a meeting with the country's leader wearing my best lungi & sandals!

                  I'm going in warm season (to KL), so clothes are light. I've done this trip a few times. Layering clothes for cold climates works well - with thermal underwear!

                  Took a Surface Pro in carry on pack on 7Kg ($2 return) trip to Adelaide recently - Jetstar weighed all carry on at boarding gate. I left a few heavy winter clothes on seat while being weighed & repacked after weighing. Excluding what was in jacket, I was just over 8kg.

                  I'm so used to travelling light, my regular clothes have the weight marked on them & have a spreadsheet of weights. I used to have daypacks waiting loaded with supplies for different countries / seasons.

                  Plenty of advice on light travel online. But don't be a slave to it. No need to suffer just to save some money. Enjoy your travels!

                  I mainly enjoy the freedom of travelling light. No waiting for luggage on arrival & easy to move around with so little.


                    @the INFIDEL:

                    In most countries, cheap washing services will have your clothes cleaned for you at the end of the day.

                    I have found that outside of developing countries, hotel laundry services are expensive. And that is true of even some developing countries. Additionally, coin laundries are hard to find in a lot of countries.

                    Going through security sounds like a real pain in your situation.

                    That limits the need to take many clothes (except for those who follow the demands of fashion). So don't waste time washing - enjoy your stay!

                    This leads to you wearing the same clothes a lot and judgment from people you are traveling with. I'm kinda self conscious about that, and don't like being seen in the same clothes in all my photos.

                    Buying local clothes is handy as they suit the climate

                    But where do you store them on your way back?

                    I'm impressed you can make this work. I don't think it will work for me though. And Jetstar charges $100 for checked baggage one way in international flights.


                      @lostn: As you have not experienced this way of travelling, it's not unusual to be confused. I try to think outside the box & develop novel solutions. Travelling light is rewarding! But not for everyone.

                      Hotels are about the dearest places for washing! I was referring to most Asian countries Air Asia flies to. In general, cheap accommodation places usually can provide cheap laundry services.

                      In my destination country - Malaysia, washing services are very available & very cheap.

                      Never have a problem at security - take off pack & jacket & put through scanner. Couldn't be much simpler! Done it so many times without any issue.

                      I'm never in dirty clothes - all except trousers (unless dirty) are fresh every day. Most light travellers find 4 is the optimal number of each item. And clothes are quick dry materials. No one had ever found my clothes unclean (except after hiking in mountains for many days)!

                      Most items have more than 1 use. For example, convertible trousers that zip down to shorts.

                      As I said - if I have too much, I give away excess clothes to the needy before my return trip.
                      I am known for that in areas of Japan - gathering up unwanted clothes from other travellers, washing them & handing them out in a slum area.


                        @the INFIDEL: Japan has slum areas? o_O

                        That's surprising for such a wealthy country.

                        What is your inhibition against checked luggage? Is it to save money and fly budget airlines, or is it some kind of sport that gives satisfaction?

                        The stuff I need simply won't fit in a carry on.

                        • +2 votes

                          @lostn: Plenty of homeless in the parks. But homeless are unlike most places. I've asked directions of one man, & he walked me to my hotel at night. He wouldn't accept my gift of money - thanks & respect was enough.

                          Many backpackers hostels are on the edge of the biggest slums in Osaka & Tokyo. Japanese won't stay there, so the old workers hotels have a new purpose. I've got to know those areas well over many trips. It traditionally employed workers for only 1 day, but there's no more work like that. It was the shoe making area in a Buddhist country - so considered "dirty"…

                          It's a country that once was wealthy. After the crash in the 80's many never found work again. I've met out of work engineers - there's not the young workers to bring in enough tax to pay them, and there are many elderly to support.

                          As for why I don't like lugging luggage…

                          I have a habit of taking too much on holidays. If the baggage limit is 25kg - that's what I take. (Yes I could have taken 15kg, but I repeatedly didn't.)
                          I regretted being loaded down & needed to look after my luggage after checking out & travelling, instead of enjoying the journey.

                          Travelling light & cheap was eye opening when I started in 2006 with 10kg on 1€ Ryan Air flights in Europe. I was hooked. On arrival at my first airport in Ireland, I quickly left the airport & hitched a lift into town with the first car - a person on my flight. It turned travel into an adventure👍

                          I was freer to change my plans without luggage. I took a tent & camping gear as carry-on on a flight to Japan.

                          It's an interesting challenge:
                          Travel light & cheap = Travel longer!

                          So I travelled overseas 9 months a year & rarely worked😊

                          Now with 7kg, & weight checks it's ok as I no longer travel for 3 months, down to 1 month trips.


                            @the INFIDEL: These 1€ flights sound like once in a blue moon bargains as opposed to something you can find at will. Does your job give you a ton of flexibility and let you take these up as soon as they appear?

                            Do you always have a backpack on you (your carryon I presume)? I hate lugging that weight on my back.

                            So I travelled overseas 9 months a year & rarely worked

                            How do you afford all this? Or do you only go to cheap countries? Ireland doesn't sound cheap.


                              @lostn: How do you afford all this? Travel cheaply & be flexible!

                              Ryan Air is known for its very cheap flights. They're still cheap & cheaper at sales.

                              Ireland in 2006 was booming & expensive. So 13 weeks in Europe (Ireland, France, Germany, etc) was a hit to the wallet. So balanced that with 2 discount 13 week trips in Asia that year. In Japan I've stayed for $13/n in my own room in Osaka. The staff know me well.

                              I rarely work in the usual sense - a day or two a year at most. Plenty of time for travel! I was earning hundreds of $/hr as a Uni student running my business. I lectured. My consulting work (developing thinking & problem solving through play) was very well paid. I've never lacked funds.

                              Travelling cheaply was never about the money, just a lot of fun & met great people. That is what I value. Off to visit some of them this trip - hopefully.

                              I made money going against the usual trends & beliefs that most others follow. And put my funds & expertise into developing people & communities ethically.

      • +2 votes

        Yeah glad you had fun while risking bringing it back and infecting others. Jesus, what people wouldn't do for a cheap flight.

        • +3 votes

          I have had experience with travelling during a pandemic.

          I did not bring it back to Australia - because I took the usual strict precautions with hygiene.

          I doubt most scared like you even know how to perform a thorough "social wash"… The first step in ensuring you don't spread a virus.

          Pity you see it as your responsibility to scare others unnecessarily. Others are putting around conspiracy theories & false information, justified on that paranoid reason. Stick to reality!

          You do realise the virus will spread anyway - that's what viruses do.


            @the INFIDEL: oh you've had experience travelling during a pandemic, that makes me so much more relieved, yeah that's fine go to Italy if you want to. It's not conspiracy theories, people have come back from overseas, they have infected others and as a result, some people have died that didn't go overseas and will possibly continue to die. It's not a conspiracy theory, it's a fact.

            Where have I put false information? The WHO? The coronavirus counts? You have cognitive dissonance, you see a cheap flight and you want to go, you know there is a risk of you contracting it and bringing it back but you want to go so you say it's all a conspiracy or it's going to spread anyways. The only conspiracies I've seen is how it came to be, and to be honest, that doesn't even matter right now.

            Then you say the virus will spread anyways, well if it's going to spread anyways, I might as well go right? It's logic like that that causes things to get worse. It honestly only takes a few idiots. I still don't understand why you couldn't put it off for a year or something. I have family there that I was going to visit this June but it can wait.

            • -3 votes

              @bkhm: You realise that makes no sense? I'm sure your misguided paranoid logic makes sense to you! And that is the problem!!

              Chosen to hide your nonsensical comments!

              • +2 votes

                @the INFIDEL: I'm not scared, I'm 22 with no underlying conditions and have no doubt I would recover. I just don't want to see other innocent people die due to human selfishness.

                Which part?


              @bkhm: As I cared for & visited frail vulnerable elderly, I was trained in good hygiene to prevent / limit the spread of viruses many years ago. Those same good hygiene habits are the main recommendations in this pandemic.

              Prevention strategies should be a healthy habit all the time, not suddenly introduced when there is an outbreak! Thousands die here each due to the spread of the seasonal flu to vulnerable people.

              If you haven't developed good hygiene habits (it takes a long time to break our unhealthy habits) - how many people have you passed viruses on to without knowing? You may have unknowingly caused death yourself.

              Examine your own behaviour before making wild claims about others!

              You misread & misinterpreted my comments - based on your own assumptions & beliefs!! Based on those misguided interpretations of my comments & adding your own hyperbole, you criticise me for things I never said!


            @the INFIDEL:

            Just in case you think I'm making it up

            The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

            Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
            Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

            No amount of hand washing can help you with this, unless you're staying 6 feet away from everybody


              @bkhm: No amount of hand washing can help you with this

              Since you sent me a PM telling me I am wrong.

              From your link:
              Take steps to protect yourself: Clean your hands often

              It's the number 1 preventative measure listed to deal with viruses.

              Being in close proximity to an infected person (under 1.5m for more than 15 minutes) does not mean you will contract the virus & we can take precautions, as I have taken during the previous Pandemic.

              It's best to be informed rather than panic - believing only what you want to believe.

              • -1 vote

                @the INFIDEL: Just for the record, I didn't neg you, I'm not trying to attack you either, I just want to discuss it. I honestly want my mind change, just like what everyone else is thinking, these deals are crazy good, I'd love to visit Korea and I'm dying to see my girlfriend again. But Korea isn't going anywhere and the few hundred or even thousand of dollars I will save going now to me, doesn't justify the risk of bringing it back. I look at the data everyday, I've created graphs, infection rates are out there, Iran have been seen digging mass grave sites and hundreds are dying in Italy every day. It is not just the common cold and flu.

                I don't disagree with you, washing your hands is the number one preventative measure and being within an infected person does not mean you will contract it but it doesn't mean you CAN'T. You can't wash your hands all the time, soap isn't always readily available and you can't always wash things you eat. Sometimes you can be as careful as you can be and still get it. Just because you didn't get it during the previous pandemic doesn't mean your methods were 100% fool proof. I'm not going to say you're lucky either because statistically, the chances were probably very low. SARS was just not as contagious, this is 2-3 times more contagious than the flu whom the cleanest of all people still get. You've traveled during one pandemic and didn't get, I'm sorry but that doesn't make you an expert. DOCTORS in China STILL got it. There's a reason people aren't travelling right now, it's because they don't want it but if other people do and bring it back then it just defeats the purpose.

              • -1 vote

                @the INFIDEL: It seems like only you believe what you want to believe, again we can be informed and it is always best to take precautions but you're exposing yourself when you don't have to and that will always bring risks despite the precautions and once you take that risk, you risk other people around you not only in Malaysia but here as well. Precautions reduces your chance, it doesn't reduce it to zero.



              Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
              Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

              I get this, but did 115,000 people really sneeze on each other?

              Did patient 31 in SK cause a mass sneezing to happen within her church?

              Or can you also catch it if someone breathes on you?


                @lostn: My point was, just because you wash your hands a lot doesn't make you immune.


                  @bkhm: my question was a genuine one, not an argument for hand washing.

                  It beggars belief that over 120,000 people have been caughing and sneezing on their fellow people. There's got to be some other form of transmission going on.


                    @lostn: You have a point, the CDC does say the main process is close contact. They've said the virus can survive up to 3 days on some surfaces. The virus probably also has some special mechanism that makes it more contagious. I read somewhere it has a an activation mechanism even the Spanish flu didn't have but they didn't conclude whether it contributed or not. It's like the flu I guess (I can't believe I'm saying this) no one really coughs or sneezes at people but it's still contracted.

  • +10 votes

    Not sure which Korea is safer to travel to atm.

    • +4 votes

      FYI, NK has a great cure system. They can heal you at one shot and send you to the heaven.

  • +1 vote

    Any deals to Pyong Yang?

  • +6 votes

    Geez, and they're all going to whinge at the time it takes for the government to spend a fortune getting them out of there and then putting them up on an island for 2 weeks (all inclusive), then transporting them home from there. What would the cost be? One or two hundred thousand dollars per person? Some people are struggling from week to week, and we're paying taxes for arrogant travelers.

  • +5 votes

    My work place has 2 weeks paid quarantine leave if you've recently visited South Korea. It's tempting for a quick holiday in South Korea with a further 2 weeks paid quarantine leave when i get back.

  • +2 votes

    I guess, it must be a really good deal for those who recovered.


      There have been a few reported cases of patients being re-infected…

      That being said, it is more likely that they are not being re-infected, but that other factors— misdiagnosis, human error, or faulty tests— are giving that appearance.However, the virus still has too many unknowns and there are too few reported twice-positive cases to conduct a study or draw a definitive conclusion.


    Come on people, just relax a bit while this virus calms down. We always have to go go go, chill!


    You can go but no sure you can come back by virus or government. If it is government then you have stay at home without contact anyone for at least two weeks.


    How come flights to China are still NOT cheap

  • +8 votes

    hold my toilet paper, bout to pack my bags

  • +4 votes

    As someone who has to work in COVID-19 clinics I might just jump on this. I'm already at high risk anyway :/


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