Korea’s Seoul Subway vs Philippines’ Metro Rail Transit

Korea's Seoul Subway vs Philippines' Metro Rail Transit.jpg

Special Seats

  • Korea offers specific priority seats per car in the train. Their subways are very accessible to the blind. Textured tiles were made to guide the blind until they reach the door of the train. They even have braille located near the doors.
  • Philippines has a special car just for PWD, pregnant, and senior citizens. They also have a car exclusively for women.

Korea's Seoul Subway vs Philippines' Metro Rail Transit 2.jpg

Transportation Card

  • Koreans use T Money in trains, buses, and taxis. You can even use it to pay in selected convenience stores.
  • Filipinos use Beep Card in trains and selected buses in Manila.


  • The minimum fare in Korea is 1,250 won. ($2.00)
  • The minimum fare in Philippines is 13.00 pesos. ($0.25)

Korea's Seoul Subway vs Philippines' Metro Rail Transit


  • In my view, both countries don’t really litter inside the train. The only problem I see in Philippines is the strong body odor of some sweaty people from work. I guess the climate is one of the factors to consider.

Time Schedule

  • Korea has many subway apps which can tell you the exact time of arrivals.
  • Philippines doesn’t have any app but I found a schedule on their website. It doesn’t tell exactly the time of arrival but it includes the headway time.

Train Transfers

  • The lines in Seoul are connected to each other. Going out is not necessary to transfer from one line to another.
  • There are three lines in Manila buy you still have to walk for a couple of minutes to reach the other line and you have to pay again for another ride.


Did I miss something? Feel free to add them in the comments.

What’s the best train you’ve tried?


  1. Wow, that’s so scary about people dying on the Seoul subway! I got my leg stuck down the side of the Glasgow subway when I was a little girl and I was petrified of them for years- until I went to university and had to start using the subway again. So, that story is literally my worst nightmare! (I used to have nightmares about dying on the subway!) But, on a positive note, good to hear that the subway is so cheap!

  2. Public transport in different countries could be a good way to experience anxiety if you ever needed a free rush – do I pay now or later, when do I get the tickets, how and where do I transfer? what if I get lost? – all very common questions frequently asked by travelers. While I haven’t been on a Manilla subway, I can appreciate a post like this as to prepare myself for what to expect. How awesome are the .25 cent rides!! Cleanliness is also important, but you didn’t mention about the noise – are we allowed to freely talk like in NYC subways or keep it on the DL like in Korea?

  3. Wow, the subway it’s so inexpensive in the Philippines. I do dislike having to go out to change lines though. I experienced that in Japan and found it annoying.
    Korea had a good system for sure, America is definitely behind a lot of the world when it comes to public transportation.

  4. Seoul’s subway system is one of the best. I wish america would take note and implement the same design in big cities there. Just the subway system would go a long way to relieving traffic congestion, pollution, and just noise pollution in general. I still haven’t been to the Philippines but I’ll get there!

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