When I was in Korea back in October, I had a chance to spend a couple of hours photographing aircraft at the two largest Korean airports – Seoul Incheon and Jeju.
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A Morning at Seoul Incheon Airport
First, let’s take a look at the couple of hours I spent spotting at Seoul Incheon airport.
After arriving at Seoul Gimpo airport with JAL and spending the night at a guest house near Gimpo, I had a very early morning start. I left the accommodation around 5:30AM and got on the train towards Incheon.
Along the way, I met with my friend Ricoh who took me to a morning spot where one could enjoy views of 15L/33R and 15R/33L, as well a distant view of Incheon’s terminals.
That morning, runway 33R was used for landings while 33L was used for take offs.
The first aircraft that landed when we arrived there shortly before 7:30AM was an Aeromexico 787. Failing to get a shot of it because I didn’t prepare my camera in advance, I waited for the next movement – an Asiana Cargo 747.
During our two hour stay, a couple of other local cargo aircraft -a Korean Air Cargo 777 and a 747-8F – arrived as well.
Foreign cargo movements were represented by UPS and DHL – with Polar Air Cargo and Air Hong Kong operating the flights of the latter.
As for passenger movements, there was a mix of the local carriers including Asiana Airlines, Korean Air, and Eastar Jet.
And, finally, with Seoul Incheon being the gateway into South Korea, there were also foreign carriers.
From Asia, there were Garuda Indonesia with an A330-300, Singapore Airlines with a 777-300ER, VietJet Air with an A321 in a special livery, and Air Astana from Kazachstan with a 757-200.
Movements from Europe that I was able to capture included an Alitalia A330-200 and a LOT 787-8.
Ricoh and I left the spot around 9:30AM – after photographing VietJet and LOT – and headed to Gimpo. There, after a quick lunch, I got onboard a flight to Jeju operated by Korean Air’s 747.
Photographing at Jeju Before Taking a Flight to Busan
The second spotting session during my trip to Korea took place at Jeju airport before I boarded my flight to Busan.
I got to the airport shortly after 8AM, and after checking in, I made my way to Asiana’s lounge.
I was expecting to spend a couple of minutes there before going to check Korean Air’s lounge and then heading airside. But, the lounge offered excellent views of the apron and one of the runways, and so I stayed there for over an hour.
In that time, I managed to photograph some of the major Korean airlines including Korean Air, Asiana Airlines, Eastar Jet, Jin Air, and Air Busan.
After leaving the lounge, I cleared the security and did some more spotting. Right after the check, there was an area that offered great views (although the glass was at an inconvenient angle) – and so I stayed there until it was time to board my flight.
The first aircraft that I captured there was a P-3 of the Republic of Korea Navy.
That was followed by a trio of Airbuses – two Asiana Airlines ones, and a Spring Airlines one.
Finally, I caught a trio of Korean Air aircraft arriving and departing within 5 minutes of each other. The three aircraft included a 737-800 in Sky Team livery, a 777-200ER, and a 747-400 (the one that brought me from Gimpo to Jeju the day before).
Once the 747 got on its way to runway, it was less than 20 minutes before the departure of my Jeju Air flight to Busan, and so I walked swiftly to my departure gate.
More about the flight itself in the next article, though.