The Korea Herald

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Jeju kicks off autonomous driving service

It's for free until next year

By Hong Yoo

Published : Nov. 2, 2022 - 15:53

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A vehicle capable of autonomous driving is parked in a garage before it starts its operation in Jeju Island on Thursday. (Transport Ministry) A vehicle capable of autonomous driving is parked in a garage before it starts its operation in Jeju Island on Thursday. (Transport Ministry)

South Korea’s Transport Ministry announced Wednesday that it will begin operating an autonomous driving transportation service that can transport tourists and local residents around Jeju Island starting from Thursday.

The autonomous driving vehicles will travel two routes. One will travel 16 kilometers back and forth from Jeju International Airport to the road along the coast of Jeju Island passing through Yongduam Rock and Iho Tewoo Beach, and the other will travel 5 kilometers within the Jungmun Tourism Complex which is located in the southern part of the island.

The ministry has worked with startups and small- and medium-sized enterprises to come up with the autonomous driving-based mobility project, according to officials.

The government will operate three of these vehicles during weekdays from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for free until next year.

Once inside the car, passengers can set their destinations within the vehicle’s operation route.

For safety, there will be an operation manager onboard in case of an emergency.

“As Jeju Island is a tourist spot where not only Koreans but also foreigners visit a lot, we hope that this transportation service serves as an opportunity to enhance the quality of tourism on the island,” said an official from the ministry.