Korea National Railroad
(Korean: 한국철도공사, Hanja: 韓國鐵道公社), promoted as Korail
(코레일), is the national railroad operator in South Korea.
Korail operates passenger and freight trains throughout South
railroad's headquarters are located in Daejeon.
Korail operates all of the long distance lines in South Korea, as
well as most local lines. TheGyeongbu Line
with its high-speed parallel
line, running between the two largest cities, Seoul and Busan, is by far
the most heavily traveled line.
Other main lines include
and Jeolla Line
, stretching into Jeolla
and the Jungang Line
The current list of railway lines with regular passenger service is
as follows (urban and metropolitan lines excepted):
- Gyeongbu Line 경부선
: Seoul-Busan. Fully electrified double track.
- Gyeongbu High-speed
Line 경부고속선 : Seoul-Busan (Seoul-Daejeon and
Okcheon-Chilgok in first phase). Fully electrified double
- Honam Line 호남선 :
Daejeon-Mokpo. Fully electrified double track. Parallel high-speed line is planned.
- Gwangju Line 광주선 :
Gwangju Songjeong-Gwangju main station. Fully electrified single
track branch line, for KTX and intercity services into central
- Jeolla Line 전라선 :
Iksan-Yeosu. Partly double track.
- Janghang Line 장항선
: Cheonan-Iksan. This line formerly finished at Janghang station,
but extended into Iksan when the link between Janghang and Gunsan
completed in December 2008. Former Janghang and Gunsan lines
consolidated into new Janghang Line.
- Gyeongchun Line
경춘선 : Seoul-Chuncheon.
- Jungang Line 중앙선 :
Seoul-Gyeongju. Partly electrified, partly double track.
- Chungbuk Line 충북선
: Jochiwon-Jecheon. Fully electrified and double track. This line
links Gyeongbu and Jungang main lines and therefore plays a great
role in freight transport.
- Yeongdong Line
영동선 : Yeongju-Gangneung. Partly electrified. The most mountainous
route in Korea.
- Taebaek Line 태백선 :
Jecheon-Cheolam. Fully electrified, as a shortcut leading to
- Jeongseon Line
정선선 : Jeungsan-Auraji. It's famous as a scenic route, but was
originally built for coal mining.
- Gyeongbuk Line
경북선 : Gimcheon-Yeongju.
- Daegu Line 대구선 :
- Donghae Nambu
Line 동해남부선 : Pohang-Busan.
- Gyeongjeon Line
경전선 : Gwangju-Samnangjin. This line stretches along the southern
coast and links Jeolla and Gyeongsang regions. Usually, this line is
regarded as a set of branch lines, which feed local traffic into
adjacent major lines.
The above two lines were country's main lines before division, but
after division, only local trains have been in service. Now these
two lines are almost regarded as metro lines, with Tonggeun
(Commuter) services in some
In addition to conventional long-distance passenger and freight
services, Korail also operates the following commuter only lines
connected to the Seoul
Also, the following portions of the conventional lines listed below
are linked with sections of Seoul
Subway Line 1
and Jungang Line
carry both subway and regular trains:
Korail covers a total of 104 metro stations with its 150 commuter
trains. The operation intervals are from 1.7 to 8 minutes during
rush hours and 3.6 to 15 minutes during non-rush hours. An average
of 2,177,000 people use Korail's commuter lines everyday.
The highest level of Korail trains is KTX
Train Express). KTX trains run along Gyeongbu Line and Honam Line.
(새마을호), which borrowed its name
from New Community Movement
provides fastest and most comfortable service in selected
conventional rail lines. Mugunghwa-ho
(무궁화호), most popular grade, is
third in Korail service order. Almost every rail line has one or
more regular Mugunghwa-ho schedule. Commuter
(통근열차) is low-cost metropolitan area
commuting grade, operated with diesel multiple units
June 2009, Korail introduced the brand-new
Nooriro-ho (누리로호) service,
operating between Seoul and Sinchang.
Nooriro is almost
identical to Mugunghwa with the same trip cost, but over a
relatively shorter distance; therefore it initially is positioned
between inter-city Mugunghwa and local commuter train of Seoul subway
system. Korail also
introduced 8 newly built electric
sets based on Hitachi
to be used for Nooriro service. (ko:TEC
- Seoul/Gyeonggi : Seoul, Yongsan, Gwangmyeong, Noryangjin,
Yeongdeungpo, Guro, Suwon, Incheon, Cheongnyangni, Uijeongbu,
Deokso, Bupyeong, Dongducheonjungang
- Gangwon : Chuncheon, Wonju, Donghae, Gangneung
- Chungcheong : Cheonan, Cheonan-Asan, Jochiwon, Sintanjin,
Daejeon, Seodaejeon, Janghang, Jecheon, Cheongju, Chungju
- Jeolla : Iksan, Songjeongni, Gwangju, Mokpo, Gunsan, Jeonju,
- Gyeongsang : Gimcheon, Daegu, Dongdaegu, Samnangjin, Butanjin,
Busan, Andong, Yongju, Gyeongju, Pohang, Ulsan, Changwon, Gimhae,
Jinhae, Masan, Jinju
Most of the railroad's employees are members of the Korean Railroad Workers'
, which is frequently at odds with Korail management.
Strikes, such as the South Korean railroad
strike of 2006
, are not uncommon.
- Korail Networks, for Korail frequent riders program.
- Korail Service Net (KSN), for ticketing management.
- Korail Adcomm, for advertisement management.
- Korail Tour Service, for KTX/Saemaul-ho train crew and travel service.
- KORVANS, for running "Storyway" convenience store.
Locomotives and Rolling stock on KORAIL lines