February 11, 2015 12:43
Traffic from Seoul to the provinces on lunar New Year's Day will be busier than last year, but the way back to Seoul will be less busy as it is expected to spread across the weekend, according to the Korea Transport Institute.
The institute carried out a survey for the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport of 9,000 households nationwide last month on their travel plans for the holidays.
It is estimated that from Seoul, it will take up to seven hours and 20 minutes to get to Busan, six hours and 40 minutes to Gwangju, and five hours to Gangneung.
On the way back to Seoul, it will take six hours and 30 minutes from Busan, six hours from Gwangju, and four hours and 40 minutes from Gangneung. The busiest time on the road from Seoul will be the morning of Feb. 18, a day before lunar New Year's Day, and for the way back to Seoul the afternoon of Feb. 19.
Some 39.6 percent of the respondents answered that they will leave for their hometown in the morning of Feb. 18, 17.4 percent said the morning of Feb. 19, 16.5 percent the afternoon of Feb. 18, and 11.3 percent the afternoon of Feb. 17.
For the return journey, 31.2 percent said they will hit the road in the afternoon of Feb. 19, 24.7 percent the afternoon of Feb. 20, and 12.8 percent the morning of Feb. 20.
Some 380,000 people plan to travel abroad over the holidays, up 19.4 percent from a year ago. A total of 33.54 million people are expected to be on the move for six days from Feb. 17 to 22, up 15.7 percent from last year's five-day period.
However, the daily average will drop 3.6 percent to 5.59 million because of the extra day. Traffic will peak on Feb. 19 with 7.03 million.
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