This South Korea Visa Guide is for tourists planning to apply in Cebu. If you wish to apply in Manila instead, visit this post: How to Apply for a South Korea Visa in Manila.
Applying for a South Korean visa in Cebu is not that different from that in Manila. The required documents are exactly the same. The only difference is in the actual lodging of the application at the consular office and the length of the processing time.
A friend very recently applied for a South Korean visa in Cebu and we asked her to document every step of the way, so now we’re sharing it with you. Here goes.
1. Gather all basic requirements.
The set of requirements varies according to the applicant’s employment status. In this post, we will only tackle the four most common types of applicants: employees, self-employed, housewives, and students. The list follows a certain order, but for the purpose of this article (and so you would easily understand the process), let’s break it down to basic, financial, and OECD documents.
Here are the basic requirements regardless of your employment status. Meaning, ALL applicants MUST have the following:
- Duly accomplished application form. Download here. You can also find it below.
- Passport (must still be valid for at least 6 months)
- Photocopy of the passport Bio page (Page 2)
- 1 passport size colored photo
- If invited by a Korean: an Invitation letter and a copy of the inviter’s passport. (Ignore if not applicable.)
The Section 2 of the application form calls for details of Visa Issuance Confirmation. This section is only for those with a document called “Confirmation of Visa Issuance.” Many people think it refers to previous Korean visas; NO, IT DOESN’T. The “Visa Issuance Confirmation” is a completely different document, usually issued in Korea.
2. Complete financial and employment documents.
A. FOR EMPLOYEES
- Certificate of Employment. Must be original; and must have the address of the employer, the landline number and email address of employer’s HR department, applicant’s position, date hired, and compensation.
- Original Personal Bank Certificate. Must include account type, current balance, account opening date, ADB.
- Original or certified true copy of bank statements/passbook covering the last 3 months.
- Photocopy of ITR (Income Tax Return) or Form 2316
B. FOR SELF-EMPLOYED
- Photocopy of Business registration form from DTI or SEC
- Photocopy of Business permit or Mayor’s permit
- Photocopy of ITR
- Original Personal Bank Certificate
C. FOR HOUSEWIVES
- Husband’s Original Bank Certificate
- Husband’s Original Certificate of Employment
- Photocopy of husband’s ITR
- Photocopy of NSO Marriage Certificate
D. FOR STUDENTS
- Parents’ Original Bank Certificate
- Parents’ Original Certificate of Employment or Photocopy of parents’ SEC/DTI Permit and Mayor’s Permit (whichever is applicable).
- Photocopy of ITR of parents
- Photocopy of NSO Birth Certificate of applicant
- Photocopy of School ID
- Original School Certificate
Note regarding the ITR/Form 2316: There have been instances wherein photocopies are accepted, we still highly encourage that you submit the following:
- ITR with BIR Received or BIR Certified True Copy Stamp
- Copy of Alphalist with BIR Stamp
- Copy of NOTARIZED Sworn Declaration, Transmittal Form with BIR Stamp submitted by company to BIR
If you’re a freelancer, read: Korea Visa FAQs
3. Photocopy all your OECD Visas
Only if you have them. If you don’t have any, skip this part.
What’s OECD, you ask? It’s the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. To see all the member countries of this organization, visit this website.
If you have been granted a visa for any OECD country, you need to submit both the ORIGINAL copy AND a photocopy of it. If you have multiple, submit them all. Although this does NOT GUARANTEE approval, it gives you better chances.
Frequent travelers who have been to OECD member countries within the past 5 years are also exempted from submitting ITR. However, I’m not sure how they define “frequent travelers” or how many OECD visas would it take to qualify as a frequent traveler.
4. Submit the documents to the Korean Consulate in Cebu.
Once you have completed all the requirements, it’s time to go the consular office. They entertain visa applications Mondays-Fridays 9am-11am only. Closed on weekends and holidays. If you’re not from Cebu but traveling there to apply, note that there may be local holidays so double check before going.
Also, Bring 2 valid IDs aside from your passport. I’ll explain why later.
Here’s the address:
KOREAN CONSULATE IN CEBU
12th Floor Chinabank Corporate Center, Lot 2, Samar Loop Cor. Road 5, Cebu Business Park, Mabolo, Cebu City
Email Address: email@example.com
Contact No.: (63-32) 231-1516(-9)
Here’s how to lodge your application:
- When you reach the lobby of Chinabank Corporate Center, approach the concierge, sign in, and leave an ID.
- Take the elevator to the 12th floor.
- Walk to your right. A guard will inspect your bag again. You will then be asked for another ID, which is why you should bring 2 IDs. The camera on your phone will be covered with a sticker. You will then be given a number and a list of documents (depending on your employment status).
- Arrange your documents according to that list.
- When your number is called, approach the VISA window (the one closest to the entrance) and hand over all the requirements. The officer will check each document and briefly assess it. If something’s not right or insufficient, all your documents will be handed back to you (so make sure they’re complete and correct).
- If the officer finds your pile satisfactory, you’ll be given a slip indicating the date and time of passport pick-up.
Visa Processing Schedule:
Mondays-Fridays 9am-11am only
FREE for stays shorter than 59
P1350 for 60-90-day stays
7 working days. Unlike in Manila, OECD visas don’t have any effect on the processing time. It’s always 7 days.
5. Pick up your passport on the scheduled date of release.
Return to the embassy on the date indicated on the slip given to you and claim your passpport, hopefully it has a visa affixed to it.
Releasing of visa schedule:
Before leaving the counter, double check that your name, passport number, and other details are CORRECT to avoid troubles in the future.
If you have more questions, we answered frequently asked questions here: Korea Visa FAQs
For more information about Korean visa applications, contact or visit the official website of the Korean Embassy. While we always try to keep this post updated, always double check with the embassy.