PSA: Visa-Free Entry for Transit Passengers in Korea Resumes
Transit passengers may be allowed to stay for up to 30 days.
by Ina Louise Manto | May 16, 2023
After its suspension in February 2020 due to the pandemic, South Korea’s visa-free entry for transit passengers finally resumes on April 30, 2023. If you’re finally revenge traveling this 2023 and want to make the most out of your much-awaited international travel, you might want to consider a side trip to Seoul. Here’s everything you need to know about the resumption of visa-free entry in Korea for foreign transit passengers:
Visa-free stay in Korea for up to 30 days
From April 30, 2023, you can stay in Korea for a maximum of 30 days visa-free if you’re transmitting to/from:
- New Zealand
- Czech Republic
- The Netherlands
- The United Kingdom
This is provided that the passenger:
- Holds an onward flight to any of these countries
- Has no illegal stay records of any kind and has never been denied entry into Korea
- Has not exceeded a maximum three-day stay in any other transit airport other than Incheon International Airport
Visa-free stay in Korea for 3 days for transit passengers via Incheon International Airport
From May 15, 2023, transit passengers traveling to/from any country via Incheon International Airport may be allowed a visa-free stay for up to 3 days in Korea provided that the passenger:
- Holds an onward flight to a third home/country
- Must participate in a transit tour program by a designated travel agency
- Stay within Seoul Metropolitan Area only
- The transit tour program must meet the minimum transfer time of two hours to be allowed entry
What is a Transit Tour Program?
A Transit Tour Program in Korea is a tour program recognized by the Ministry of Justice; the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism; the Incheon Airport Corporation; and the Korea Airports Association.
It’s a FREE tour that ranges from experiences, entertainment, tradition, themes, and shopping. These tours are available in 1-hour, 2-hour, 3-hour, 4-hour, and 5-hour courses with an English-speaking tour guide.
Note: Tourist site admissions fees and meals are paid individually by travelers.
How do you participate in a Transit Tour Program?
Participants must hold a valid visa or register for K-ETA. Apply for a K-ETA here.
When signing up for the tour, passengers must bring their flight ticket and passport.
To learn more about transit tours, visit this page.
Read more about visa-free entry options to South Korea for Pinoy travelers:
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