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Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Korean Tourist Visa Application for Filipinos (NEW)

5/26/2020 06:59:00 AM 0 Comments
The last time I went to Korea was in 2015. Back then, I only knew a few things about the country or even Kpop. The trip was also too short. Fast forward to 2019, I am already into so much K artists, K films, K dramas and guess what? K beauty products haha! Going to Korea is no longer just because I scored a promo fare. I really wanted to go this time!

Fall in Seoul

So much has changed from 4 years ago, even the visa application process. I created a guide before on how to apply directly at the embassy. Now, I also wanted to share how I got my new visa from an accredited travel agency.

1) Complete the Requirements

The requirements remain pretty much the same:
  1. Fully-accomplished Visa Application Form.
  2. 1 piece Passport size colored picture.
  3. Original Passport (should be valid for more than 6 months)
  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, and Korean Visas will not be counted). You may check the list of OECD member countries here.
  6. Original Certificate of Employment (must include applicant's position, date hired, compensation, office address, HR land line number (cell-phone number is not allowed), HR e-mail address).
  7. Original Personal Bank Certificate (must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB) It doesn't matter if it's a payroll or personal account. Both can be accepted.
  8. Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months). Same with above. As long as your account has activity and/or has enough money.
  9. Photocopy of ITR (Income Tax Return) or Form 2316. 
  10. Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (only if applicable) 

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

I did not submit the last 2 requirements. I have multiple visits to other OECD countries for the last 5 years and I don't have #10.

2) Submit through Designated Travel Agency

So, after completing the requirements I went to my chosen travel agency. My first choice was JTB but I saw them posting a longer processing time due to the high volume of applicants. That was when I decided to just go to City Travel & Tours. Their location is also more convenient for me because they are just behind my office building in Makati.

free no more

Filing my application with them was a breeze. They'll just review all of your documents, process your payment, and give you an estimated date of release. During my time of application, the processing time was 15 business days. There were 2 Korean holidays during that period as well, so I had to add those days too.

If you're getting anxious, you can also check the status of your application online. My visa was approved on the exact date I was told. I called the agency to check on when I can get my passport back. I was advised to get it the next morning because according to them, they pick it up from the embassy in the afternoon (day of approval).

3) Collect your passport from the Travel Agency

After my shift, I dropped by at the agency to collect my passport. And surprise!!! I got 5 years Multiple Entry!!! 


So happy to get multiple entry just on my second time. 

Those are the three steps in getting a Korean Tourist Visa. Very easy, right? I actually find this new process easier since you don't have to go to the embassy anymore, all you have to do is prepare and submit your documents, pay and wait for the results.

Here's where I submitted my application:

LG8 Cityland 10 Tower 1, H.V Dela Costa St., Salcedo Village, Makati City
Phone: 812-9111

Processing Fee: Php 700.00

I'm quite satisfied with their service. I just don't like the fact that I have to be the one to contact them to follow up on the result and the passport pickup. Unlike my fave agency for my Japan visa, they are the ones who reach out when it has been processed and already available. Not complaining, I just think they can do better.

You can find the list of other designated travel agencies from this link.

If you have any questions or want to share your own experiences and tips, please use the comment box below.

Thank you and have fun in Korea!