The visa policy of South Korea determines the regulations, rules, and requirements that a foreign citizen must meet in order to travel to the country.
South Korean visa requirements state that all travelers entering the country, whether they have a visa or not, need to have a passport valid for at least 6 months that contains between one or two blank pages.
Upon arrival in the country, it may also be necessary to prove that the visitor has enough funds for the stay to gain entry to South Korea.
According to the South Korean visa law, there are currently around 110 visa-exempt nationalities for the country. These foreign citizens may enter South Korea for differing periods of permitted stay visa-free.
Depending on nationality, visa-exempt citizens may stay in South Korea from 30 days to 180 days.
However, individuals from over 130 countries and territories around the world require a visa to travel to South Korea no matter the period of stay or purpose of travel.
This applies whether the visitor needs a visa for business, tourism, transit, a working holiday, overseas study, corporate investment, foreign language teaching, residency, or other purposes.
South Korea currently only offers the option of obtaining a visa through a government diplomatic office, either an embassy or a consulate, as a visa on arrival is not available for the country.
Therefore, applying for a South Korea visa currently involves having to attend an appointment in person and supplying an embassy with a range of supporting documentation depending on the visa type requested.
However, an online travel authorization for several eligible nationalities is expected to be implemented in 2021, which will greatly expedite the application process.