After my second trip to South Korea, it reminds me of the desire to share my preceding spring experience in SoKor through social media, I’ve been pondering about it for weeks now. Particularly the nerve-wracking idea of applying for a South Korea tourist visa (because of denying visa stories from different blogs). Just thinking about it back then, discourages me from continuing the trip. But I was determined to have this visa on my passport, it appeared challenging, after all, there is no harm in trying.
Yes, you heard it correctly. We, Filipinos, need a Tourist Visa to enter mainland of South Korea. Yet you can enter Jeju Island visa-free for 30 days. But I know most of us really dream to visit South Korea once in our life. And I can tell you, that dream of yours is possible. You just need a little patience, luck, and F-A-I-T-H! Prayer works, indeed! Read more to know how I got mine, twice.
(I can still feel the first air I breathe the first time I stepped out from the Incheon International Airport while writing this, LOL. I’ll be posting my itinerary on a different blog. )
Let me start by enumerating my personal information as a traveler:
■ early 20s
■ with 6 mos old bank account (from the time I applied for the visa)
■ call center agent (IYKWIM, there is still bias when it comes to a high-risk job like in BPO industry)
■ first travel abroad
(DISCLAIMER: I do NOT guarantee that the things in this post will get you approved 100% when you’re applying for a tourist visa and that this information is based on my personal experience and that I am not related in any way to the South Korean embassy in the Philippines. No one can give you a guarantee. But at least in some way, I hope, this post may help.)
The following process that I followed is for employed, single individual who is applying for a tourist visa below 60 days of stay.
First, you need to religiously complete your requirements.
■ Download and fill up the Application form.
■ 1 piece of the Passport size colored picture. You may tell a studio photographer that you’ll be using it for South Korea Tourist Visa.
■ a Philippine Passport that is valid for at least 6 months at the time of departure.
If you don’t have one, better to have your appointment now. Click here for the requirements and to set up an appointment.
■ Photocopy of Passport Bio-page (page 2)
■ Original & Photocopy of valid visa/s and arrival stamps to OECD member countries for the past 5 years (If applicable only)
■ Original Certificate of Employment
(must include applicant’s position, date hired, compensation, office address, HR landline number(cell phone number is not allowed), HR email address)
If you are not employed but your parents are, these are the requirements that you need to secure:
Original copy of your parents’ Certificate of Employment (if they are employed)
Photocopy of your parents’ Business Registration from SEC or DTI and photocopy of their Business Permit or Mayor’s Permit (if they are self-employed)
Photocopy of your parents’ ITR
Photocopy of your parents’ NSO Marriage Certificate
Photocopy of your birth certificate
Photocopy of your school ID
Original copy of your school certificate
■ Original Personal Bank Certificate and Bank Statement
You can get these from your bank, I got mine from BDO. They charged me P100 for the Bank Certificate and P100/page for the Bank Statement.
I think this will serve as a proof that you can afford to travel to their country and I guess the amount of money you have in your bank doesn’t guarantee you 100% approval of the visa.
■ ITR(Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 Copy
This can be obtained from your respective company, if you don’t have this, I suggest you write a letter of explanation (if you’re a freelancer or if you’re a tax-exempt employee)
■ Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (If applicable only)
Overwhelming right? No. Not really, I know you can do it.
Now that you have all the required documents, it’s time for a visit to the embassy.
Here is the address of Korean Embassy in Manila:
Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the Republic of the Philippines
122 Upper McKinley Road, McKinley Town Center, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig City 1634, Philippines
Email Address: email@example.com
Contact No.: (63-2) 856-9210 visa local no. 270, 500
■ Processing Time:
3 working days (for those who have been to OECD member countries within 5 years as a tourist)
5 working days (for those who have not been to OECD member countries within 5 years)
■ Visa Fee: 59 days (or less) stay in Korea — GRATIS
60 to 90 days stay in Korea — PHP1,800.00
For more information, you can visit their website at Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the Republic of the Philippines.
After that, all you have to do is wait and pray. Five days of waiting is really no joke. However, waiting is better than never trying at all, so why not go for it.
Just I always say, old ways won’t open new door. 🙂
So that’s how I applied for my South Korea Tourist Visa, hope I’m able to inspire you to get yours. Best of luck and may God bless you. Thanks for reading and hope that you have a good day!
If you need help or if you have questions, you can always shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll be more than happy to help.
About the Author
Mark Lim works as a technical support for the world’s largest search engine. He lives with the truth. He always expresses his love. He shares his enthusiasm. He takes action towards his dreams. Every day, he walks with a smile, because that’s who he is, the boy who never stop smiling. Follow him on Instagram @markuzlim or ask him anything under the sun at email@example.com.