How To: Apply For A Korean Visa When Traveling With A Minor

In general, I dread applying for a visa. I feel like a naughty student trying to justify why I should be allowed to join the field trip. Oh well, you gotta do what you gotta do. The "perks" of having a Philippines passport is you almost always have to apply for a visa if you are traveling outside South East Asia (SEA). ;) If anything, it has trained me to be resilient and come prepared to the teeth. Double, triple photocopy all your documents! :) One of the easiest VISA application I went through was for South Korea, where I applied for us and my under-age sister. This is easy and fast enough that I don't think you will need an agency to do it for you. Visa fee is for free for those traveling less than 59 days.

Raiza, Jaysen, and I in Seoul
Raiza, Jaysen, and I in Seoul

Tourist/Business Visa Requirements for Employees

1. Application Form 2. 1 piece of Passport size colored picture 3. Original Passport (should be valid for more than 6months) 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) 7. Original Personal Bank Certificate (must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB) 8. Bank Statement (original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook for the last 3 months) 9. ITR(Income Tax Return) or Form 2316 Copy 10. Copy of PRC Card or IBP Card (If applicable only)

* If you have been to an OECD country in the last five years, you may not submit your ITR or Form 2316. List of OECD countries (double check for Japan as there is a new embassy advisory): here

We are traveling with my sister and are footing her expenses, we had to make sure our financial documents are strong enough to demonstrate we can afford it.

As for students/minors, here are the requirements:

1. Application Form 2. 1 piece of 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 only) 6. School Certificate (Original) 7. Copy of School ID 8. Copy of Birth Certificate 9. Parents' Documents - 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

As she is traveling without our parents, she needed to have a DSWD clearance for immigration clearance.

The Korean Embassy is located in McKinley, Fort Bonifacio. The easiest access is along C-5 road southbound and exit by the Petron station. If you go early enough, you can park along the street. When applying for a visa, I prefer going as early as possible. This means little delays, or in this case shorter queues. It also gives me time to "fix" things in case I forgot something. Unlike other embassies, there is no appointment process. Application goes by the first come, first serve process. So better be there early. Upon entry to the main hall, you need to register and your documents will be pre-screened by an embassy staff before you proceed to the official visa-processing. Personal appearance is not required so I did the submission for all three of us. The process is mostly document checking. I wasn't asked any questions, which is good! :) I was fifth in line and the whole process took less than an hour including the waiting.

Since we have an OECD entry in the last five years, it only took three days for our visa to be released. If you don't have an OECD entry, release will take five days. There, easy peasy.

Basic things to remember:

1) Make sure your documents are authentic and complete. Make copies of it. 2) Make sure the visa form is filled up correctly and are signed. Make copies of it. here 3) Photocopy pages of your passport where there are stamps. 4) Bring extra ID photos. Just in case.

I hope this will help you in your planning.

Happy travels!

xoxo,

For complete information: here