How to: Use Melon From Overseas

Notice: 

We are aware that there are changes to the layout of the MelOn registration, and that people are having trouble with payment. Unfortunately, we cannot troubleshoot iTunes problems, but we will work towards updating the screencaps in the future.


Without a doubt, MelOn 멜론  is the most important streaming site in Korea. The rankings on MelOn affect ALL music shows that take rankings into consideration. It also has the widest variety of music available. In Korea, the vast majority of music fans are willing to pay the subscription for MelOn, because it costs no more than $9 a month, and you get unlimited streaming music from around the world. International fans have always felt that this could be the biggest hurdle in getting their groups the support they’re trying to give, because the site is not easy to navigate. However, it CAN be done! You too can pay a streaming fee to get all the k-pop you’ve ever dreamt of.

You will need the following:

  • An email address (avoiding Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo are advisable. You can easily make a Naver or Daum address to make sure you have a Korean address.)
  • A credit card that has not been associated with your current iTunes account
  • A Korean iTunes account

The next page has all the terms and conditions. Thankfully, nobody ever reads those, so there will be no problem in checking off all of the check boxes without worrying about missing anything. If you’re wondering though, what they are confirming is if they can use your information, and if you agree to not steal the music. Which is easy enough to do. Then click 다음 단계 (next)
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Next step is your basic registration. They need your name, birthdate, gender, email address, username, password twice, and your nickname. Fill in those steps and continue on.
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Once you’ve filled out that information, and everything has a green text next to it confirming it’s an original email, username, and nickname, then you’ll be taken to the verification page. The verification should be easy enough, so long as you keep it to the defaults. You want to make sure you’ve checked off “email” instead of phone, because you can’t verify with a foreign phone. Click the button next to where your email is, and you should get an email with a 6 digit code. Input that where the confirmation codes go, and click the button next to it. That should verify the account and have some friendly green text next to it.
If you want the newsletter, click yes. But you’ll be happier clicking no. Fill in the captcha and click next.
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You’re done! You should get a confirmation page that verifies your name, username, and email, and an option to go to the main page.

This is only half the battle though. PAYING for your MelOn account can’t be done normally. The best way (that we know how) is with the iPhone app. You’re going to need a new email to your normal iTunes account, as well as a second credit card if your iTunes account is already linked to your main one. I have not tested pre-paid cards, so that could or could not be an option. Korea doesn’t have iTunes to buy music, so gift cards don’t exist for the Korean stores.

Go to iTunes, log out of your current account, and then scroll to the bottom. Click the flag, and change your country region to Korea. This should take you to the Korean app store. From there, you want to create a new account. Your iTunes player should keep the window in English, so you can fill in all your information without any language problems.

You WILL need to lie about the postal code and country of your card, however do make sure you have a proper Korean address. Ask a friend who might be an ESL teacher, or simply pick one off a map if needed. We of course recommend asking someone so it’s slightly more legit. At the payment option, put in your secondary credit card. If your card is one that iTunes would normally take, then it should be fine, since payments go through the US anyways. Try to make sure your card is from a large bank though, so there is more chance of international recognition.

Once your iTunes account is complete, you can then search “멜론” and it will bring up the MelOn player for iPhone and iPad. Once you’ve downloaded those, simply log in, and find your way to the in-app payments. It will usually take you right there. Pick the option you want (I’m a fan of mp3-30 and then just downloading all the albums I want each month) and do the in-app purchase.
Taadaa! One month of MelOn paid for! Your streaming and downloads are all now legally paid for using a great loophole.

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  1. Pingback: kpop: How to: Use Melon From Overseas | B2K

  2. Hi, I am not able to purchase as they need either a I-pin or mobile phone verification for purchase :(. May I know how do you do it?

    Thanks

  3. Hi, is there any reason why a secondary card is needed? I bought the mp3-30 pack as an in-app purchase so my order and invoice comes through itunes… I did not know about the secondary card thing… I have been charged on my card but my stream pass does not show at all on melon. 🙁 it basically directs me back to the order page for the different passes. I don’t really want to do a double order until this is resolved or refunded… I reported it on itunes as it’s been days already, but i don’t know if that will help. please, any advice? thanks!

    • I’m not too sure what the problem is there, but the reason I suggest the second card was because when I signed up for the Korean account, it told me it recognized the card from another account so I needed a second. However, I found that keeping the accounts completely separate with banking and everything helped make sure money was coming from the right place. Others have since been able to use the same card for different accounts.

      If you don’t hear back from iTunes, first, I would make sure your phone is logged into the right account when you access MelOn. Check on both accounts and see if anything happens. If it doesn’t work, I would attempt the order again and make sure you’re logged into the Korean account. Go for the streaming option if you’re worried about money or anything like that, in case you don’t want to be dropping $10 again. Beyond that, I’m not too sure what to do, because it goes in the hands of iTunes and MelOn.

  4. Any chance you know of a way to do the payment for the streaming pass on android? I am trying on the Website as well however it isn’t allowing any other payment than the mobile ones

  5. Hello. Im hoping somebody can help me. I live in the US & I made a Melon account using my yahoo e-mail. I really regret because, I forgot my password & got locked out of my account. I went to go reset it but when I click to get sent a confirmation number to my e-mail, I get nothing. I’ve tried so many times & I’ve checked my spam folder & everything. Idk what else to do. Im really upset because I payed for a streaming + download pass & now its just going to waste. Idk what else to do besides contact their customer service, & even then idk how or if they have an english speaking representative.

    • I don’t think Melon have customer support in English, so that could be a dead end. Could it be at a different email? Or could the email address have had a typo? I’ve struggled with the password reset option, mostly because it depends on Korean forms of ID like the phone number or I-PIN. If you haven’t been able to get the information, my best suggestion would be making a new account with a different email address, and writing the information down. Do you know what message you get when you do the name and email search option?

      • I have the same problem except I do know my password but for some reason I entered it in incorrectly too many times (I think it says over 5 times) so it didn’t let me login anymore so I went through with the password reset through email but got nothing even in the spam folder. It’s weird because when I created the account it sent the code just fine. I was wondering if you could email them or ask them if they could resend it or maybe after a certain number of hours it will be back to normal? Like after a certain number of hours I could attempt to log in again without it being suspicious of the many times I entered it in incorrectly (like usually it’s 24 hours?). Thanks

    • Try and install the LATEST version of the app on your phone or just to be sure you can uninstall and rein-stall the latest version of the app. For android users you can search “apkpure melon” and it should be the fist link. For iOs users follow the tutorials on how to download the app from the app store. After that if you try to reset your password it should send to your email or spam folder. The key is to try to reset your password through your phone using the latest version of app. If it still doesn’t work maybe try letting it send your username first. To avoid future complications maybe make a Korean email like Naver or Daum like Rebecca suggests. Hope this helped.

  6. Can you pay for Melon using an iTunes card for iPhone or Google Play card for Android? Or do you have to use a credit card?

    • Korean iTunes doesn’t actually have iTunes cards yet, and other country cards can only be used in their country of origin. So you have to use a credit card.

  7. Pingback: [TUTORIAL] MELON ACCOUNT | ikonvaccts

  8. Does this technique for MelOn app also work for MNET app on iOS and/or Android? I noticed on MNET.com they still accept foreign credit cards! Their MPlayer is a bit wonky these days — can I still get music via MNET app from overseas? Will my purchases count towards their charts? Can you PLEASE provide a tutorial on how to buy/download/stream music from overseas on MNET.com and/or MNET app? MelOn is great but options to use other KPop sites would be even better!

    • We can look into the other music sites as well, however we focused on MelOn because it is the streaming service that ALL the shows use. For programs like Soribada, Bugs and MNet, they’re only used by certain shows, but MelOn is used for all shows. If we find a way to use these sites though, we will share it.

    • My understanding is that Korea doesn’t have iTunes gift cards yet, so it has to be credit card. iTunes cards from other countries can’t be used.

  9. I’m having problem with it. I had purchased the $10.99 from App Stores and the region i had chosen is South Korea but the credit card i used is Malaysia’s credit card. It was purchased but it is not recorded in my Melon account. In my Melon account it says that, I have not purchased anything. So i tried changing my country or region in my iphone but it’s unchangeable. Anyone can help me with this?

  10. Hi,
    do you perhaps know how I might be able to purchase with my andriod with the prepaid sim card I just purchased in Korea?

  11. Hi! I’m sorry if this is kinda out of topic. Do you perhaps know if international fans could buy good such as seasons greetings and other merchandise through melON? (I have an account and I tried clicking purchase but the next page shows something about i-PIN)

    • I don’t think international fans can buy anything other than the offer through the iTunes shop, because there’s technically no bank account attached to it. That’s why they ask for the iPin or the phone number, so they can secure the connection and get a payment.

    • Underneath the login section, click “아이디/비밀번호 찾기” which means “Find ID / Password” then you need to input your name and username. That should work, but they’re really picky about how you type your name.

  12. Do you know how to print the song that we have purchase from Melon like the one that Itunes send to your email after you downloaded the song.

    • I’m not too sure what you mean by print. You can download the tracks on your computer if you download the MelOn player once you have a paid account set up.

        • Ohh! You need to access your profile and find the purchase history. When you log in on the website, you should see something under the username that says “마이뮤직” which means “My Music, and there should be a listing of the songs you’ve purchased. You print that page and bring it in. Hope that helps!

  13. I go to apple ID account settings and press change region/country but its not letting me and it says I need to spend all the money on my store credit to change my region? This makes no sense.

  14. Hi, i’m trying out your tuto to buy streaming+downloads on MelOn but before going through, i have a question. I was wondering after the month, does my “subscription” to MelOn be renewed automatically or do i have to buy it again manually (and do all the step with the korean itunes account, etc…)?

    Sorry if i’m not too clear but i just want to know if i have the choice since i’m most likely not willing to pay every month for MelOn but just few months a year.

    Another question : Your advice is the mp3-30, what does it give? 30 songs to download and unlimited streaming?

    Thank you for your time.

    • In my experience, it is not an automatic subscription. So you need to renew it each month. Which is perfect for your situation. And MP3-30 is exactly what you said. 30 tracks to download, unlimited streaming.

  15. Hi, I bought the $10.99 unlimited stream. For what I know, it can only stream and cannot download. But I was able to download some dcf files and the songs can play offline.

    What happened? Is there any extra charges??

    • Unfortunately, I think they need to verify your age via a Korean identification card. Most people add those when they join MelOn, but it’s not necessary any more (that’s the loophole that lets us get accounts now.) I just tried accessing my basic info through the site, and you need to enter your i-pin or your Korean mobile phone number to get into it, so unfortunately overseas fans are locked out from the 19+ songs.

      Sorry, I wish I had a better answer for you. 🙁

  16. hi i’m using iOs. i have downloaded 1 song and it was already succeeded. what i want to ask you is where i can find my downloaded song? it doesnt directly get into my iPod Music library? how do i can find my downloaded song so it can appear on my Music library? or i have to copy out the song and synchronized with iTunes? but i couldnt find any file which is my downloaded song tho. sorry for my bad english. i hope you understand. thanks

  17. Hi, I have a question:
    I’ve successfully purchased the MeLON 30-day pass, and I have no trouble streaming the music. But my account is not ID-verified, since I don’t have Korean phone nor iPIN. In this case, I just wonder whether my streaming still contributes to all music shows or not?

    • An iPin is a secure way of verifying your information in Korea. Up until three years ago, people had to use their national ID number (like a social insurance number) to verify their identity. They changed that rule due to security and now iPin is one of two ways to verify your age or information. The other is mobile phone number.

      • Hi. is it possible to verify my melon account using my korean friend’s phone number? Because i need it to attend music show. Someone i know said she verified her account that way, but i thought the korea phone number’s info (name & birthday) had to match our melon account info to get verified?

        • I’ve never tried verifying using someone else’s data. I don’t see why you would need it to be attached to a phone number for a music show, as long as you have the download on your phone or a print out of your download.

          Give it a try and see what happens. 🙂 And let us know if it works!

  18. when you download a song (when you’ve already activated your streaming pass), does the song remain accessible to you (via the download form, not by streaming) even after the 30 days are over? like assuming that you don’t buy another streaming pass after the 30 days runs out, can you still listen to the songs which you’ve downloaded when you DID have the streaming pass? Or do you have to buy another streaming pass to access songs you downloaded before?

    • If you have the account that gives you 30 downloads, then yes, the file will have downloaded as an mp3 and it can be used in the MelOn player even when you haven’t paid for that month. However, if you downloaded the file while just streaming, then it can’t be played without a paid account. Hope that helps!

  19. So we can’t even listen to 19+ songs without an I-Pin or even a Korean phone number? Is there a way to bypass that?

  20. I’m having a hard time trying to purchase melon’s streaming subscription.
    when i put in my credit card information, it won’t let me change the billing address for it because that’s my itunes (korean) account. help!

      • Hi, I’m having a different problem buying the subscription. I get to the in app purchase page in MelOn, but the purchase does not go through. Are foreign credit card allowed? I entered my billing address as best as I could in my Korean iTunes account (except for province, which I just picked Seoul).

        Also, how come you recommend against using gmail as the registration email?

        • It seems you’re not the only one with this problem. I’m not too sure what is going on but once my pay cheque goes through in a week or two, I’ll test it out and see what’s happening on my side.

          As for the email, back when we wrote this, gmail had not taken off in Korea. I tried applying with my gmail account and it didn’t want to work, but from what I’ve seen since (I rarely get to see the account creation section any more) gmail has a bit more support in Korea.

  21. Hello, when i tried to purchase the pass there is a pop up saying something along the line of “unable to continue purchase, please contact itunes support”. I changed the billing info to the appropriate informaition and stuff already. Do you have any idea on how to fix this? Thank you;_;

    • Unfortunately, I’m not sure how to fix this. We’ve had a few people mention having problems at purchase section, so there might have been a change with iTunes. Once I get my pay cheque I’ll check it out for you guys.

    • Hi! I experienced the same problem. I just emailed the itunes support (describe the error, what app and stuff). They fixed my itunes account. After I received an email from them saying it’s fixed, I can already purchase streaming pass.

  22. hi!
    i have a question.
    do you know how to gift a streaming pass or song to other melon accounts?
    i received a song and streaming pass before and i wanted to return the favor to my friend.
    thanks

  23. Thanks for this guide! I was able to successfully create a South Korean iTunes account and get MelOn onto my iPhone.

    It’s tougher than I thought it would be to find my way around the app though. Still haven’t found the way to pay for music in-app, but I guess that will just take time 😉

  24. I would like to update everyone here on the issue of payments not going through.

    If you get the error saying payment failed and gives you a link to iTunes website it is because Apple blocked it.

    I asked them to fix it and instead of fixing it they disabled my Korean iTunes account from making in app purchases. Or any free apps or anything.

    So the problem is not melon it’s stupid apple.

    I was able to fix this by using my main account changing the country to Korea. Make they payment and switching country back to USA store.

    Fuck Apple

  25. Hi, could you provide an updated tutorial, it seems the UI has changed since this was last posted.

    Thanks!

  26. Hello. I purchased my melon pass (unlimited streaming + 30 songs download) yesterday. I already received the invoice stating that I already purchased pass. However, I can’t stream or download any songs from the melon app. As if i didn’t purchase the pass at all. Can someone please let me know how do i fix this problem.

    Thank you

  27. Hi, i’ve used MelOn before and downloaded songs but now i have a new phone. I downloaded MelOn to it too, signed up, activated the new phone on MelOn but my downloaded songs are still in my old phone, how can i transfer them to the new one?

    • I think if you go on the MelOn website, you can click on 마이뮤직 and get your list of previously downloaded music. If you’re on a Mac, you’ll need to just redownload the files to your phone.

  28. Hi,when i streaming, i accidentally clicked on the green bell(??) ((🔔)) <-like this .and it turns to white .how to turn it back to green? Does it affect anything? This is on the latest ver of Melon

    • I just checked my account, and all clicking the bell does is show me alerts. So right now when I click it it tells me about the MelOn Music Awards voting. So I think it might just be a notifications button? Either way, it didn’t seem to affect my account.

  29. Hi! Thanks so much for your tutorial! I’m curious if there’s a limit on the count for streaming, like YouTube limiting an IP address to 3-5 views a day. I’ve heard once an hour is all they count towards the chart. Hope you can help. Thanks again.

  30. Hi. Your guide worked perfectly for me except for the payment step. I made a completely new account with a legit Korean address (I have a friend who lives there), changed country code to Korea, etc. but my payment will not go through. It says I have to contact support. I have tried 2 different cards as well as 2 different accounts and it always gives me the same error.

    Has anyone found a fix for this yet?

    • I’m not sure how to fix that yet, sorry. Was it a Korean account, or just an English account with the country set as Korea? Because I know my Canadian account can’t pay for my Korean apps – I needed to make an account through the Korean site.

      • It was an English account with the country set to Korea. I actually fixed it since I sent that message. All I did was go to iTunes support website and emailed them telling them I was having issues purchasing a streaming pass for melon and they fixed the issue for me within 10 minutes via email. 🙂

        • I have the same problem. Is the issue with the Korean address? Because I don’t know anybody living in Korea. I used random Korean address I found on the net (it’s like an online yellow pages for residents, I think). I’ve contacted iTunes support though.

    • To listen to 19+ songs, I believe you need to be in Korea because they can use your cell phone as a way of knowing that you actually are the age you say you are. Many artists do release a version that can be listened to by teens though as well.

  31. I did everything in the tutorial, but when I try to purchase anything it keeps saying Purchase Could Not Be Completed? Why is this and how can I solve it?

  32. I registered a coupon, 30 download song and streaming but once I download the song, there will be a choice one was i-pin and the other is mobile phone. Do you know something about this problem?

    Thank you

  33. Hey, melon’s got a choice to download the app for windows pc. I did download it, but the app just doesn’t open and i have no idea why. I use windows 10, is there any other people complaining about this problem too? Do you have any idea of what the problem is and what do i have to do?
    Thanks ^^

  34. Hello,
    Thank you for your thorough explanation, but I would like to ask this: if I buy my pass (I was planning to buy the i-Smart package with unlimited mobile download) from my iPhone, can I still use my account on my android phone? Thanks in advance.

  35. Is there a language setting in the app? I’m not yet that good reading Korean so I was just asking if I could change the language of the app into English?

  36. Hello, i want to make an acc, but when i clicked “create new account” its should lead me to the term and conditions page but what i got is..they ask for my phone number? Its leads me to a different page, i want to give u the ss but i couldnt post any image here,right?

    • Hi Amy,

      Melon has updated the rule to register on August 4th where they have disable new registration via email. After this rule update, they only accept registration only if you have Korean phone number.

      However, there is a way for you to register Melon account if you have Kakaotalk account. You may register here https://www.melon.com/muid/web/login/login_inform.htm.

      Hope this helps ya:)