I am from Australia. I got a job at a hagwon. Worked there for 3 years without missing a day or being late or complaining about anything. I'll be leaving in May. I asked the boss about my return fare to Australia and I wanted in cash. He said Ok. It'll be about 1,200,000 won. That's what I originally paid to get here. He goes to to his office and checks the online air agencies. He calls me to his office and says the return flight will be 407,000 won total and that's what he will give me. He even showed the travel agency and the prices. After giving this hagwon 3 years of faithful service he decides to cheat me out of my fare. Can he do that? .
If the contract specifies a return air fare I can't see how he is cheating you. If it specifies a 'or cash equivalent' even then I can't see how he's cheating you.
Call his bluff - ask him to buy the ticket for you at the agency he has a quote from. It is almost certain he won't get that price or if he does, fine - you get to go home without loss, he gets a good deal.
This happened to me when my employer suddenly said a return flight to London would cost 700,00 won! Increased mysteriously to 1,5 million when I asked them to book on my behalf....same travel agents but now it was an official buy.
To be fair, it seems he is getting a one-way figure there - and he may be playing with the dates.
Did you pay for your own one-way ticket here and he has not refunded that leg yet? (For 2 x 407 + taxes would seem to hit the 1, 2 million you are asking for? )
I'd say make sure he agrees to the date you are leaving and then just let him book the ticket if he can get that price. He will then, I am sure, come back and ask if you will take cash so long as it is cheaper than the new 'official' price - which seems to be what you prefer?
If he really can get you home for 407,000, then there is nothing you can do or really complain about, as he will be honouring the contract.
After my initial post I was thinking about this and I think he is quoting you fare only and no taxes. A quick look on air.interpark.com confirms that a one way ticket to Sydney is between 400-500 bucks, but when taxes are taken into account it's closer to a million.
Taxes on airline tickets here are insanely high. There are taxes upon taxes. He does not have to give you cash-he has the right to buy you any ticket he can find but it would be under 500 000WON I guarantee you that. My guess is you want to travel and are not going home so I would ask to see the price including taxes (do a little research yourself first) and then split the difference. If he balks, make him pay for the ticket. If this does not fit into your plans then you will have no choice but to take what he offers you. I think after three years he would split the cost but in Korea, people are your friend up until you leave them or they don't need you anymore so him low-balling you is no surprise. Good luck!