VISA APPLICATION | How to Apply for a South Korean Visa for Filipino Tourists

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South Koreans love the Philippines as much as Filipinos love Korean dramas, K-pop culture, and Korean food. Affordable flights from the Philippines to South Korea allow die-hard Filipino fans to visit the land of the morning calm. But before anything else, please take note that Filipinos need to acquire a visa first before entering South Korea. Here’s a simple and straightforward guide on how to apply for a South Korean visa and get one successfully.

The following process is for employed, single individuals who’re applying for a tourist visa below 60 days of stay. Additional details are provided below for other types. You can also visit the South Korean Embassy website for the updated requirements and accurate information on applying for a visa appropriate for you.

Complete all your requirements before visiting the embassy and be sure to sort the documents based on the list and avoid stapling or putting paper clips before submitting.

south korean visa

BASIC REQUIREMENTS FOR SOUTH KOREAN VISA APPLICATION

  1. Application form. Updated application form can be downloaded on the embassy’s website.
  2. 1 piece Passport size colored picture. Attach the photo on the application form.
  3. Original Passport. It should be valid for at least 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 only). Remember that it indicates OECD countries. There’s no need to photocopy the arrival stamps of non-OECD countries.
  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). My COE didn’t include the HR’s e-mail address but be ready if the officer asks for it.
  7. Original Personal Bank Certificate (must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB). Go to your bank and request for your bank certificate. The request usually takes 3 days, same with the bank statement. On my case, my savings account on BDO was opened in Manila and I needed to call my home branch to request by informing the nearest BDO branch to do the bank-to-bank process. I received my bank certificate after a week. The bank certificate usually costs Php100. As to the amount, there is no standard value the embassy requires. I know someone who applied having only 60K on his account and got approved. The approval also relies if the money on your account is enough to cover your expenses during your stay in South Korea.
  8. Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months). Bank statement is Php100 for the first pages (for BDO) and an additional rate per page (forgot the rate). This document will show the transactions on the savings account you’ve submitted. If you deposited a large amount of money just to have a show money, the embassy can track the activity on this document. The embassy only needs the last 3 months but the one I got from my bank has 6-month transactions in it.
  9. ITR (Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 Copy. Apart from the Certificate of Employment, you also need to get a copy of your authenticated Income Tax Return from your HR. BIR doesn’t authenticate each ITR of the employees. Instead, a list of employees bears the BIR stamp. On my case, I asked for a photocopy of the Alphalist with BIR Stamp from my HR. The embassy doesn’t accept unauthenticated ITR so seek the supporting documents before going to the embassy. You can also request from your HR a copy of sworn declaration, transmittal form, or notarized certification with BIR stamp submitted in compliance with RR No.2-2006.
  10. Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (If applicable only).

south korean visa

Visa fee is gratis (free) for below 60 days of stay and a payment of Php1,800 for 60-90 days stay in South Korea. Once you complete the list of requirements, you can directly apply at the embassy nearest you.

Address: 122 Upper McKinley Road, McKinley Town Center, Taguig City (MANILA)
Contact No: +632-856-9210  visa local no. 270, 500

Address: 12th Floor Chinabank Corporate Center, Lot 2, Samar Loop Cor. Road 5, Cebu Business Park, Cebu City (CEBU)
Contact No: +6332-231-1516(to 9)

NOTE: Visa application is only accepted Mondays to Fridays from 08:30AM-11AM. Applicants easily pile up so fast and it’s better to show up in the embassy earlier than the schedule.

For CEBU, once you arrive at the embassy, register and leave an ID on the guard on duty who will hand you a number. He will also put stickers on your phone’s camera lenses. Wait for your number and approach the VISA window once called. The officer will review your documents. There will be two scenarios here: staff will (1) hand you a claim stub indicating the date of pick-up or (2) return your documents for incomplete requirements.

Processing time takes 3-5 days for applicants with OECD Visas while 5-7 days for regular applicants. Go back to the embassy on the scheduled release from Mondays to Fridays, 01:30PM to 4PM. If your visa application is successful, check your details on the visa before leaving the counter.

south korean visa

How to Fill-Out the South Korean Visa Application Form

For the visa application form, you must fill out the form completely and correctly. Write in block letters, check all that applies, and put N/A for not applicable entries. The embassy also asks for the form to be printed on an A4-sized paper but got mine printed on a legal-sized one.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS IN APPLYING FOR A SOUTH KOREAN VISA

  1. Do I need to book a flight before my visa application? You can attach your flight itinerary if you booked one during seat sales but this won’t guarantee the approval of the visa.
  2. The form asks for an address in Korea, do I need to book my accommodation before applying? Again, NO. Just indicate the address of the hotel you’re planning to stay as well as their contact number. To ease your mind, you can put reservations using some booking sites, those that you can cancel anytime.
  3. I’m self-employed, what additional requirements do I need to submit to the embassy? Excluding the certificate of employment, you also need to submit a photocopy of your Business Registration from SEC or DTI and a photocopy of your Business Permit or Mayor’s Permit.
  4. I’m a student, any additional requirements to prepare? You need to provide your school certificate (Original), copy of School ID, copy of Birth Certificate, Parents’ Documents like:

If employed: Employment Certificate Original [must include position, date hired, compensation, office address, HR landline number(cell-phone number is not allowed), HR e-mail address]

If self-employed: Business Registration from SEC or DTI (Copy), Business Permit or Mayor’s Permit(Copy)

– Original Bank Certificate [must include account type, current balance, account opening date, 6 months average balance (ADB)] – Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months)
– Copy of Income Tax Return(ITR)
– Copy of NSO Marriage Certificate

  1. A Korean friend personally invited me to visit his country, do I need to provide an invitation letter to the embassy? Yes, as well as a photocopy of his/her passport or identification card.
  2. Will the embassy return all my requirements after my application? NO. So be sure to submit only the photocopies of the documents, unless it was indicated that they need the original copy.

Tours and Activities for your South Korea Trip

Once your visa is granted, you’re now ready to visit South Korea! But don’t forget to plan your itinerary. Check my Seoul sample itinerary and travel guide. Meanwhile, for cultural and natural attractions and activities, you can buy it from Klook before your trip to Seoul, South Korea. These include hanbok rentals, nanta show, and day trips to DMZ, Petite France, and Nami Island. Check the activities below.


Klook.com



Klook.com

32 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Arjay, thanks for sharing your Travel in Korea, I have a question.
    Our BDO saving account were opened last June 8, 2017 ,September 8 will be the 3rd month, if we will request the bank statement on sept. 11 or 8 then after 3 days we can apply for Visa on September 14? possible we can get the result on September 21? but our booked flight is on September 23rd 🙁 .

    Do you thinks there is a chance for us to be approved? 🙂 thanks!

    • Hi Net, You can apply anytime as long as you have all the requirements needed for the visa application. It seems that your schedule, between the application and travel to Korea is too tight. You can try and let’s hope for the best. Do let us know how will the application goes. Good luck!

    • Hi po, tanong ko lang po if na-approved po ba ung visa nyo po? kasi ganyan din situation ko. and i heard na need ng embassy 6 months ADB

  2. Hi! My sister and I applied on the same day but our releasing dates are different, because i used my BPI credit card, so mine will be release earlier . Do you have an idea if I can get mine on her releasing date?.

  3. Hello. My dad doesn’t have bank certificate however his savings is in IRA (Retirement money/plan) Can I use that instead of bank certificate?

    • Not sure about that. Remember that you also need to show a bank statement, not just the bank certificate. I’m not familiar with IRA but you can try calling the embassy for verification. Please let us know 🙂

  4. Hi,

    Is it okay if I would apply for the visa first and book everything after the visa is apporved? Will it help if I’ll just attach my planned itinerary? Do I have to write a letter to the embassy too?

    Thanks.

    • Flight details and confirmed hotel bookings are NOT required. For the letter, it depends on what category of visa you’re applying for. You can check the embassy’s website for the requirements.

  5. Hi! Ask ko lang kung pwde ba na photocopy lang ung application form? Family kami na mag-aapply, ok lng ba kaya na photocopy ung form namin? Thanks

  6. Hi Mr Rj! What if we will be traveling as family, do they need to show up as well or can I just be the one to submit their requirements? And can I also be the financier of my sister’s in law’s sister who will be coming with us? Thank you

  7. Hi RJ! Im planning to apply for a korean visa asap but my personal bpi savings account opening was just a month ago. Are they gonna accept it or not? If not, can i use may bpi payroll account instead? Ive been using it for almost 3yrs now but i dont usually deposit money there. 99% withdrawal transactions only. Hope to hear from u soon!

  8. Hi RJ, doesnit matter if your bank statement has a different address than what you have on your visa application form? I just realized that my bank statement has my old address.

  9. hi! Do Embassy check or Call the banks to verify the bank certificate? What if i withdrawn after the time my bank certificate was issued? Say my balance that time was 70k+ then i get the 20k after my certificate was given and im still waiting for the result? Would they deny because of that?
    Thank you!

  10. Hi! Tanong ko lang po. Is it okay po ba to pass my visa application sa December pero ang nakalagay na issue date sa COE ko ay November?

  11. Hello. My chance po b na maaprove ung visa ko khit 2 months palang since nung nag open ako ng bank account.worried ako baka kc ireject ung bank statement and certificate ko.tnx.pls reply.

  12. hello Good Day po !

    Sir tanong ko lang po pwede po ba gamitin iyong previous na form 2316 (2016) kaso ang nakalagay po sa employer po is iyong previous pa po ? nag resign po kasi ako ako dun last march at nahire sa bago ko ng late July .. valid po kaya iyong 2316 ko kahit magkaiba iyong nakalagay na employer ko sa 2316 at sa COE po? hope to hear your response. Thank you !

  13. Hi! For students, what kond of school certificate is that? Should I get one from my school or is my Certificate of Matriculation enough? Thanks!

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