How to Fill out Korean Visa Application Form

Below are some common confusion points when filling out the Korean Visa Application form. Please read through this post to guide you in completing the Form.

 

General Instruction from the Embassy

  • You must fill out this form completely and correctly.
  • You must write in BLOCK letters either in English or Korean.
  • For multiple-choice questions, you must check [√] all that apply.
  • If you select ‘Other’, please provide us with more information in the given space.

1. Personal Details

  1.2 Chinese Name.

Write N/A if not applicable to you.

  1.4 Date of Birth. Take note of the order in writing dates.

Korea has a different system in writing dates. This is because in their culture they write the most general first and the specific last (Year/month/date). This unique system is also visible in writing address (e.g. South Korea, Gyeonggi-do, Yongin-si, Giheung-gu~ etc)

  1.7 National Identity Number.

      Philippines has no National ID system yet. However, for my application, I used my Social Security System (SSS) Number. My other colleague used her Driver’s License, while my cousin did not write anything. All of us got our application approved. So, I guess it doesn’t really matter.

2. Details of Visa Issuance

As I have mentioned before I didn’t have other passport or prior approved Visa so I just wrote N/A for all the space that needs to be filled up.

3. Passport Information

       3.5 Date of Issue and 3.6 Date of Expiry.
          This part didn’t require any format. So, I just followed how the dates were written in my Passport.

4. Contact Information

       4.1 Current Residential Address.
I believe this part of the form is not that difficult to understand. However, please take note that if your Current Residential Address is the same as the Address in Home Country, you do not need  to write it on 4.1 anymore.

5. Marital Status

       Funny but based on experience, this is the only form so far where I don’t have to say I am single, rather it is ‘unmarried’. Anyway, if you are also unmarried, just tick that option and put N/A for the other details.

6. Education

       6.2 Name of School.
I actually have 2 majors. I used the name of the last University I attended to.

7. Employment

       7.1 Current personal circumstance.
       I am a civil servant. I had to check that option. Consequently, I also provided travel authority to support my documents (Our agency said it is not part of the requirement but they took it anyway just in case it will be needed.)

       7.2 (d) Telephone Number.
       I wrote the phone number of our Human Resource Department.

8. Details of Sponsor

       8.1  Do you have anyone sponsoring you for your visa?
       My answer was NO. Actually I have my invitation letter from my Korean friend but she is not sponsoring the trip. I paid for all the travel expense.

   Although I traveled with friends, we applied separately. They did not have invitation/sponsorship from any Korean or anyone residing in Korea.

        If somebody is sponsoring you, I believe you should show the Visa Officer that the person paying for all your travel expense is financially capable of doing so.

9. Details of Visit

     9.1 Purpose of Visit to Korea. 
At some point, I got confused because I have invitation letter from my Korean friend attached. I don’t know whether I should check Tourism/Transit, Visiting Family/ Relatives/Friends, or BOTH . In the end I just ended checking Tourism/Transit option.

By the way, you have to know what is written in the invitation if the content was written in Korean.

    9.2 Intended Period of Stay. 
I stayed for 8 days while my friends stayed for 5 days. We initially planned to stay for 8 days but some of my friends decided to just stay for 5 days. I already received the invitation letter and I was hesitant to ask my friend to change it so I just decided to stay for 8 days. This is to match the data in the invitation and my application. I thought it’ s going to be exciting too!

     9.4 Address in Korea.
     We had several hotels but we only wrote the first hotel we were going to check in.

     9.5 Contact Number in Korea. 
We didn’t have Korean number. My friends wrote the hotel’s phone number. My cousin did not write anything. In my case, I wrote my friends contact number as visible in the invitation letter (My friend’s contact number/Her name).

      9.6 and 9.7. Travel to Korea and other International Travels.
     As I’ve mentioned in my earlier post, I didn’t have any international travel. Hence, the N/A.

     9.8 Travelling with Family Member.
     Although I travelled with my cousin she is not one of those listed as family member in the form. So, we cannot write each other’s name.

10. Funding Details

    10. 1 Estimated Travel Costs.
     How much is enough to convince the Visa Officer? That I don’t know still. But, let me share that I wrote $1000 for 8 days. My friend also wrote $1000 but the agency advised her to reduce it. This is because we cannot write amount that is almost equal to the money in our bank account. It has to be less than the money in the bank statement. (The agency also mentioned that $600 is good enough. However, since we will be traveling outside Seoul, she wrote $700)

10. 2 Who will pay for the travel expense?
a. I wrote my name.
b. I wrote N/A for relationship.
c. I wrote ALL TRAVEL EXPENSE  for the type of support.
d. I wrote my contact #.

11. Assistance with this Form

I did not receive any assistance so I just checked NO and put N/A for the other boxes.

12. Declaration

I just wrote my signature just beside the date of completing the form.

I hope this could make your application process a bit easier!

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Getting Korean Visa

Yes right. Let me join the bandwagon, too!

Before you reached my page, you must have read other popular blogs already. Well, hope you wouldn’t mind reading mine, too. Let me start this with some of my background information. Who knows! Maybe we are in the same situation.

  •  Filipino, living in the beautiful Island of Panay, Philippines!
  • Currently employed (regular employment)
  • BPI (Savings Account)
  • Zero (nada!) experience traveling abroad.
  • Planned for April travel, started being determined about saving money for Visa Application since September (little by little… I had to take the first step!)
  • Applied Visa through agency (I didn’t take package tour.) I made my own itinerary considering the location, travel time, budget and convenience.

Based on the information above , please read through the VISA requirements as provided by the Korean Embassy website:

For this blog, I will focus on those who are employed.

TOURIST/BUSINESS VISA REQUIREMENTS FOR EMPLOYEES

1. Application Form.

Kindly refer to this post to see how I completed my Visa application. It basically focuses on the confusing points.

2. 1 piece of Passport size colored picture (Please attach on the application form)

Yes. We glued it on our application form.

3. Original Passport (should be valid for more than 6 months)

They have to keep your passport. So, make sure you have no conflict like international travels while your passport is with the embassy. My cousin personally processed her Visa and it took her 5 days. In our case, since my colleagues and I live in the province outside Manila, we waited for 3 weeks to a month. This is because we coursed it through an agency. Instead of paying for the plane fare and accommodation in Manila while waiting, we decided to use an agency. It costs less as we only paid around 1300 to 1500 all in all (Sorry, I can’t remember the exact amount anymore).

4. Photocopy of Passport Bio-page (page 2)

5. Original & Photocopy of valid visa/s and arrival stamps to OECD member countries for the past 5 years (If applicable only)

6. Original Certificate of Employment  (must include applicant’s position, date hired, compensation, office address, HR landline number(cell-phone number is not allowed), HR e-mail address)

Just follow what is being asked. However, double check the signature of your HR and whether their phone number is also written in the COE. In our case, the agency was very strict, they questioned the signature of the HR. They said, the Visa officer would sometimes question the authenticity of the signature by reason of the stroke of the pen.
By the way, our HR landline was just inserted through typewriter (beat that!) because it wasn’t included in the COE. It’s very analog, I know. It’s just that it’s difficult and risky to insert using a computer printer. We only had 1 copy and it would be hard to request for another document because we had to ask it from the national office.

7. Original Personal Bank Certificate   (must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB)

Please note that Bank Certificate is different from Bank statement. Banks surely know what to do but just give them this information still.

For LANDBANK users, they don’t issue ADB as per bank policy. I think the embassy already knows that. My friend just submitted the document issued by Landbank of the Philippines. She got approved!

8. Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months)

How much do we need in our bank statement? Well, it depends on how much you are willing to spend. That is why if you worry about how much is necessary, have a rough plan of your itinerary at least. I have a discussion about it in my other post. By the way, my banker friend told me that it’s better to request for the bank statement few days before your application date. This gives the Visa officer an idea that there is still money in your bank account.

9. ITR(Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 Copy

I am a government employee receiving meager salary. I don’t really think it mattered a lot because I got my Visa but still it is a necessary requirement.

10. Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (If applicable only)

* If personally invited by Korean
. Invitation Letter
. Photocopy of invitor’s Passport or Identification Card
(authentication not required)

* If invited by Company in Korea
. Invitation Letter
. Photocopy of Korean Company Business Permit
(authentication not required)

* Frequent travellers who have travelled as tourist to OECD member countries within 5 years are exempted from submitting ITR.

UNWRITTEN REQUIREMENT:
Please bring your Birth Certificate issued by the National Statistics Office.

NOTE:
Do not submit your flight tickets.

■ Processing Time:
3 working days (for those who have been to OECD member countries within 5 years as 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

My South Korea Dream

Let me start this blog with this beautiful quote from the drama series Goblin.

“Your choice is the only answer in your life”  -Kim Shin, Goblin: The Lonely and the Great God (2016, Korean Drama)

This quote struck me, and made me reflect on my everyday life.

I am admittedly a long time Kdrama fan. I spent my adolescent days (*cough* maybe until now *cough*) enjoying Korean drama series. Ohh please don’t misunderstand me. I believe I did well in my studies and managed to get my dream job. (^_^)

My South Korea dream probably started long before I realized I was already dreaming of it. Due to financial constraint, I had to set it aside temporarily for my other equally important goals. Nevertheless, it served as my inspiration to aim higher. I worked hard, maybe failed in the middle, and hit my goal. This is all because I made my choice to pursue my wishes in life.

“Never underestimate the power of positive thinking.”

I created this blog to take account of my memories. I’d like to share this to dreamers like me who wished to have their dream travel in life. I’ll start with my South Korea tour, how I managed to get my Korean VISA application approved and how I planned this travel… I will also update this with my past (I’ve been keeping them in my FB. I think they deserve a blog post too), and future travels.

My dears, this is my appreciation of how beautiful life is… that despite all the odds I’ve gone through, life never fails to amaze me.