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Fancy a trip to SoKor? Korea Visa Application Center opens for walk-in applicants

By JUSTINE PUNZALAN Published Sep 05, 2023 6:53 pm

As high as the eagerness of K-pop and K-drama fans to go to South Korea, so is the challenge of getting a South Korean visa. Now here's music to your ears, Hallyu lovers: Expect to get closer to visiting the land of Hallyu as the Korea Visa Application Center (KVAC) has opened in Taguig.

In case you missed it, the Embassy of South Korea in the Philippines launched KVAC on Aug. 29 to streamline the visa application process for Pinoys as the number of travelers wanting to fly to the country continues to surge.

“There have been concerns that the visa application process has been too difficult for Korea, but expectations are high that it will be improved by opening of KVAC,” quoted South Korean Ambassador Lee Sang-Hwa as saying during KVAC's opening ceremony.

With the center's launch, Pinoys applying for a South Korean visa would no longer have to book an appointment online, with the embassy completely getting rid of the process at the KVAC's launch.

Apart from filing your application through one of the embassy's accredited agencies, you and your travel buddies can do it yourselves at the center, as it accepts all walk-in applicants on any working day without limit.

KVAC said it is accepting all types of visa applications, with a service fee of P900. Processing usually takes seven to eight days to be completed.

The center is only in charge of accepting visa applications while approval still comes from the embassy. Once your application has been processed, you will receive an SMS notification about your visa application status. Passports will likewise be released at the KVAC.

If you're submitting visa applications for diplomatic passport holders, official passport holders, and those who require a visa urgently within one to two days due to humanitarian reasons, KVAC recommends bringing them directly to the embassy instead.

KVAC is expecting that there will be an influx of applications at its quarters during its first weeks, so it is suggesting that you set your appointments at a later schedule as much as possible.

To ensure the smooth processing of applications in the morning, KVAC is urging those claiming their passports to just visit the center in the afternoon (and save on waiting time, too).

KVAC is located on the ninth and tenth floors of the Brittany Hotel in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. It is open from Mondays to Fridays, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., excluding Korean Embassy holidays.