The Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) started to offer a toll-free travel hotline accessible anywhere around the world via a smartphone app on March 19. (KTO)

The Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) started to offer a toll-free travel hotline accessible anywhere around the world via a smartphone app on March 19. (KTO)

By Xu Aiying and Yoon Sojung

The Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) announced on March 19 that it would start to provide a toll-free travel information service from anywhere in the world.

The 1330 Korea Travel Hotline service is a telephone number that provides tourism information about Korea in eight languages: Korean, English, Japanese, Mandarin, Russian, Vietnamese, Thai, and then both Malay and Indonesian.

In the past, those who needed to use the 1330 service overseas had to face expensive international calling rates. This was also the case for overseas tourists who used their mobile phones from outside Korea when they needed to use the 1330 service in Korea, which made them reluctant to use the service.

Considering such difficulties, the KTO has introduced a new toll-free 1330 travel hotline service. To use the service, users need to download an app without needing to worry about any long distance fee.

To use the service, download the “Visit Korea” app that provides services in English, simplified Chinese and Japanese. You don’t need to worry about the cost, as long as you can use a wifi network.

Shim Hong Yong, director of the KTO’s Information and Transportation Team, said, “The newly introduced toll-free telephone interpreting service will provide up-to-date information about Korean tourism for non-Koreans. I hope this service will make overseas tourists enjoy traveling in Korea without any worry, which, in turn, will further attract more international tourists to Korea.”

Meanwhile, the 1330 Korea Travel Hotline will also provide telephone interpreting services about Korean tourism, receive complaints from tourists, and offer three-way interpreting services that involve calls to the 112 or 119 emergency telephone numbers, or to the 139 emergency medical information center.

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