Find out about the most recent updates on Korean immigration regarding COVID-19, the visa-waiver program, and more (as of May 31, 2022).
On This Post
- Coronavirus Test Update
- Jeju and Yangyang’s No Visa Entry Update
- Resume Issuing Short-Term Visa (C-3) and E-Visa
- List of Countries Currently Eligible for K-ETA
Coronavirus Test Update
From May 23, 2022, South Korea accepts Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) results for international arrivals. The negative COVID-19 RAT result must be issued within 24 hours prior to the departure date. The test should be conducted under professional supervision. Self-test kits are not accepted. A negative PCR test result still continues to be valid.
From June 1, 2022, foreign visitors need to take only one PCR test within three days from their entry to South Korea. The second RAT test in 6 or 7 days is still recommended but not required.
Incheon International Airport has more information on your arrival in South Korea.
Jeju and Yangyang’s No Visa Entry Update
From June 1, 2022, foreign travelers entering South Korea through Jeju and Yangyang International Airport need no entry visa. South Korea resumes the visa-waiver program, which allows international travelers to visit South Korea for a short term without a visa.
The visa-waiver program allows all foreigners entering Jeju for tourism purposes to stay for 30 days without a visa. Under the visa-free program, tourists must stay on Jeju Island, and travel outside Jeju is prohibited. Although most international travelers will be allowed to enter Jeju Island visa-free, the program does not apply to citizens of 24 countries and regions in addition to 10 other countries that have mutually suspended the visa-waiver program with South Korea.
Countries/regions that require a visa to enter Jeju International Airport: Iran, Sudan, Syria, Macedonia, Cuba, Kosovo, Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq, Ghana, Nigeria, Yemen, Egypt, Gambia, Senegal, Bangladesh, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Somalia, Uzbekistan, Nepal, Cameroon, Sri Lanka, Myanmar
Ten other countries suspended visa-free entry to South Korea during the pandemic on the principle of reciprocity: Macau, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Grenada, Micronesia, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Tonga
Also starting in June, tour groups of five or more people arriving from Vietnam, the Philippines, and Indonesia at the Yangyang International airport can also stay in the country for 15 days without a visa. Visitors can travel only within the Seoul metropolitan area and Gangwon-do province. To be eligible for the visa-waiver program, the group of tourists must book through travel agencies designated by the Gangwon-do province. Each tour group must fly in and out of Korea on the same flight. From Oct. 1, the program will be expanded to visitors from Mongolia.
Resume Issuing Short-Term Visa (C-3) and E-Visa
From June 1, 2022, the South Korean government will resume issuing short-term travel visas (C-3) and e-visas.
A short-term general C-3 visa allows foreigners to enter the country for tourism, transit, visiting relatives, marketing research, or similar reasons and to stay in South Korea for up to 90 days.
An e-visa is issued online for foreigners with excellent skills, foreign patients, or group tourists.
This short-term visa is required for foreigners from countries or regions which is not applicable to K-ETA (visa-free program)
Please, make sure to check with the South Korean embassy or consulate in your country for further details and visa requirements.
List of Countries Currently Eligible for K-ETA (102 countries)
Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Eswatini, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guam, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Latvia, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, Nauru, Netherlands, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Oman, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Portugal, Poland, Qatar, Republic of South Africa, Romania, Russia, Saint Kitts-Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Switzerland, Sweden, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Tuvalu, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uruguay, Venezuela
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Hi there! I am from Belgium, coming on the 3rd of June and already have my K-ETA done and approved. Do I have to do anything else or apply for visa or just show up?
Also, okay I do my antigen and arrive in Korea then I do PCR test when I am at the airport and head to the city. Do I have to stay in my hotel till I get the results or can go out in Busan and only have to quarantine in the worst case scenario of positive?
Thanks in advance for your answer!
Hi, Anna, As long as I know, visitors from Belgium do not need to issue a visa if they visit South Korea for tourism. As for a PCR test, I believe you need to stay at your hotel until you get a negative result. I am not an official resource for immigration, so I strongly suggest to contact Korean embassy in Belgium and double check any questions about visa and COVID related questions. This is its website: https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/be-en/index.do. Also, this is a link to the page of the Korean Central Disease Control Headquarters for the entry process. Hope this helps and welcome to Korea!!
How do I apply for a visa and what are the qualifications and requirements ?..Cause my country isn’t qualified for the visa free program..
I have a post for applying for a visa: https://www.busanpedia.com/how-to-apply-for-south-korea-visa/ It is a very basic process. Where are you from? I think it would be best to contact the Korean embassy or consulate in your country to get the most accurate information.
So sad ethiopia is not on the list 😢
So sorry to hear that. However, you can visit South Korea with a C-3 Short Term Visa.
Zeinab Taher says
Hello, i am a lebanese who wishes to visit south korea in summer. Do i need a visa? Please let me know how to go about the visa process.
Hi, thank you for reaching out to me. I believe you need a visa to visit South Korea. I have a post for the visa issuance process: https://www.busanpedia.com/how-to-apply-for-south-korea-visa/. In addition, I strongly suggest contacting Korean Embassy in Lebanon to find out all the details. The information I offer is very general and policies changes often. Here is a link to Korean Embassy in Lebanon: https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/lb-en/index.do Best wishes!
I live in US and I have green card but my passport is Ethiopia. If I want to travel Korea for a week, what kinda visa do I need ?
Hi Mary, I think you probably need a C-3 visa. I have a post on how to apply for a Korean visa (https://www.busanpedia.com/how-to-apply-for-south-korea-visa/), but it is very general. To make sure, I strongly suggest contacting Korean Embassy or Consulate. Here are links to (1) Korean Embassy in Ethiopia: https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/et-en/index.do (2) Korean Embassy in the USA: https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/us-en/index.do. Hope this helps~
Hello my flying to Korea end of July from the USA. I’m fully vaccinated, and will take a covid test 24 hrs before my trip, will I still Require quarantine when I land in Korea?
Hi Nghia, thank you for reaching out to me. I believe there will be no quarantine after June 8th whether you are vaccinated or not as long as you have a negative test result. HOWEVER, as of June 4, 2022, you still need to have a negative test result before your departure AND you have to take one more test after you arrive in South Korea (Incheon Int’l Airport has test centers.) In addition, you still need to provide information to Q-CODE system. I have a link to Incheon Airport here: https://www.busanpedia.com/korean-immigration-updates-june-2022/
I strongly suggest contacting the Korean embassy in your area, your travel agency, or your airline to make sure all information you have is correct.
Welcome to South Korea~~
Hello there my name is Isa from Switzerland, I was wondering how things work when I wish to visit your beautiful country but my vaccination is not valid anymore (I am not planning to give myself another shot), how does it work with quarantine?
Thank you for explaining it to me!
Hi Isa, there was a government announcement a few days ago that the quarantine requirement will be lifted after June 8, 2022 regardless of vaccination status. HOWEVER, visitors still need to take tests and have negative results (before departure and after arrival.) Also, you need to provide your information to Q-CODE system. I strongly suggest contacting Korean Embassy or Consulate to double-check all the information you need before you make any specific plans or reservations. Here is a link to the Korean embassy in Switzerland: https://overseas.mofa.go.kr/ch-en/index.do Hope this helps and welcome to South Korea (in advance)~~