OWL Magazine Korea

Hong Kong Travel: Incheon Airport Departure Process

After a long time, I embarked on an overseas trip again. Since I needed to use up my remaining vacation days at work, I pondered where to travel. Originally, I was considering Spain or Taiwan, but by chance, I came across information that there were many flights to Hong Kong. Upon searching for Hong Kong flight tickets, I discovered that they were quite affordable. Eventually, I decided to travel to both Hong Kong and Macau.

“Departing from Incheon Airport to Hong Kong Airport”

Traveling alone made me a bit nervous, but I’ve been on solo trips several times now, so it wasn’t too daunting. (Come to think of it, my first overseas trip was also a solo adventure.)

Since I needed long-term parking, I looked into it and found that parking at Unseo Station was cheaper than at Incheon Airport. Unseo Station is a stop just before Incheon International Airport Terminal 1.

I parked at Unseo Station for an extended period, then took the Incheon Airport Railroad to the airport. After two stops, I arrived at Incheon Airport.

“Tasks Before Departure at Incheon Airport”

Before departing for an international trip, I always make a checklist of things to do at the airport, even if I’ve done it many times before. Making a mistake even once can lead to irreversible situations right from the start of the journey.

Fortunately, I had prepared many things in advance for this trip. I had exchanged some Hong Kong dollars in Myeongdong ahead of time. To use the internet abroad, I opted for purchasing a SIM card instead of relying on Wi-Fi. I also pre-purchased an Octopus Card, which can be used as a transportation card in Hong Kong.

Here’s the checklist I had prepared before departing at the airport:

  1. Check in at Asiana Airlines counter.
  2. Collect the pre-purchased SIM card.
  3. Collect the Octopus Card.
  4. Go through airport security & departure immigration.
  5. Collect items ordered from duty-free shops online.
  6. Proceed to the boarding gate, then board the plane.

“Checking in with Asiana Airlines”

The first thing to do was to check in at the airline counter and send off any checked baggage. The Asiana Airlines counter I used was located in the A-C section on the east side of Terminal 1 at Incheon Airport.

“Collecting the SIM Card”

I had pre-ordered the SIM card online before the trip. Fortunately, I could find the location to collect the SIM card right next to the Asiana Airlines check-in counter. It could be collected at the “Play WiFi” counter located between gates B and C in the Departure Hall on the 3rd floor of Incheon Airport.

“Collecting the Octopus Card”

I had also pre-ordered the Octopus Card online, so all I had to do was collect it. While it’s possible to purchase this card locally, I decided to get it in advance in Korea, especially since it was a late-night flight, and I didn’t want to be delayed upon arrival. The Octopus Card collection point was the “Bookstore” counter in the H section of the Departure Hall on the 3rd floor of Incheon Airport.

“Baggage Inspection and Departure Immigration”

With all the tasks completed before entering the departure immigration gate, it was now time to go through baggage inspection and departure immigration.

Luckily, I cleared the inspection smoothly, and after completing departure immigration, I entered the duty-free area. Asiana Airlines’ boarding gate was conveniently located in a section where I didn’t have to take a train.

“Collecting Duty-Free Items in the Duty-Free Area”

While you can shop in the duty-free area, I personally had ordered some items in advance through an online duty-free shop. Before boarding the plane, I made sure not to forget to visit the duty-free shop to collect the items I had pre-ordered.

“Boarding the Plane and Departure”

With the duty-free items collected, my preparations for departure were now complete. All that was left was to board the plane on time.

Asiana Airlines’ boarding gate was number 23, conveniently located near the departure immigration area, allowing me to board the plane smoothly. Finally, my Hong Kong journey began.

“Incheon Yeongjongdo, Incheon Airport”