Rent a Car for Travel in Busan

As South Korea’s second largest city, Busan offers a tropical climate, beautiful beaches, hot springs, seafood markets, and fascinating historic sites. Having your own set of wheels makes it easy to explore Busan’s extensive metro area and surrounding destinations. Here’s a guide on renting and driving in Busan.

Finding Car Rental Companies in Busan

As a major tourist hub, Busan is well served by rental car companies including:

  • AJ Rent A Car
  • KT Kumho Rent A Car
  • SK Rent-a-Car
  • Lotte Rent-a-Car
  • Hanjin Rent-a-Car

Branches are located at Gimhae International Airport, major train stations, and popular neighborhoods like Haeundae. Reserve early for best rates and availability, especially in summer.

Documentation and Requirements

Typical documents required:

  • Valid driver’s license from your home country
  • Passport
  • International Driving Permit recommended but not always mandatory
  • Major credit card for payment

Some agencies have minimum ages (typically 23-25). Surcharges may apply for young drivers. Clarify policies when booking.

Types of Rental Cars in Busan

Car TypeExamplesDescription
EconomyHyundai i10, Kia MorningIdeal for 1-2 passengers
CompactHyundai Accent, Kia RioGood gas mileage around the city
IntermediateHyundai Elantra, Kia ForteMidsize sedans fitting 3-4 people
StandardHyundai Sonata, Kia K5Full-size sedans with good trunk room
SUVHyundai Tucson, Kia SorentoFor families and luggage capacity
MinivanHyundai Starex, Kia CarnivalFor group travel, airport transfers

Most rentals have automatic transmission. Make sure to clarify policies regarding cross-border travel.

Driving in Busan – Rules of the Road

Key driving practices in Busan:

  • Drive on the right side of the road
  • Seat belts mandatory for all passengers
  • Strict drunk driving laws enforced
  • Right turn on red permitted after full stop
  • Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Honking only allowed for safety purposes
  • Headlights required on highways and at night
  • Traffic cameras enforce speed limits

Busan’s roads can be congested. Drive patiently and anticipate delays.

Useful Rental Car Tips for Busan

  • Reserve well in advance for best availability
  • Inspect car thoroughly for any damages
  • Purchase extra liability insurance for protection
  • Ask about E-Z Pass for highway tolls
  • Have offline maps downloaded on your phone
  • Get an International Driving Permit to be safe
  • Park only in legal, designated spaces
  • Keep belongings out of sight in the car

These precautions will make renting and driving smooth.

Top Day Trip Destinations

Having your own wheels makes accessing sights near Busan easy. Top day trips include:

  • Haeundae Beach – Iconic stretch of beach in eastern Busan. Lovely for swimming.
  • Taejongdae Park – Scenic cliffside park with great views of the sea.
  • Beomeosa Temple – Ancient Buddhist temple nestled in the mountains.
  • Gamcheon Culture Village – Quaint hillside community with colorful houses, cafes, and art.
  • Gyeongju – Historical city with ancient tombs, temples, and museums.
  • Tongyeong – Coastal city with beautiful harbors, beaches, and seafood.

Double check maps and directions when driving outside Busan. Road signage is limited.

FAQ About Renting a Car in Busan

What documents do I need to rent a car in Busan?

You’ll need a valid driver’s license, passport, and major credit card. An International Driving Permit is recommended but not always required.

What side of the road do Koreans drive on?

South Korea drives on the right side, like the USA, Europe, and most other countries.

What insurance should I get with my Busan car rental?

Purchase standard liability insurance at minimum. Consider getting supplemental coverage for maximum protection.

Is driving in Busan difficult for foreigners?

Busan has congestion but is easier to navigate than Seoul. Get a sense of local driving practices and allow extra time to reach destinations.


While South Korea’s roads require adjusting to, having your own rental car is the best way to explore Busan’s beaches, scenery, seafood, and historic sites. Reserve early, inspect cars thoroughly, and brush up on local driving etiquette. With your international license in hand, you’ll be ready to hit the road and experience all that Busan has to offer!