South Korea’s new visa policy for Vietnamese citizens is expected to stimulate travel in the country, possibly doubling the number of Vietnamese visitors.
|More Vietnamese will travel South Korea thanks to new visa policy |
Korea Tourism Organization (KTO) has clarified two new provisions related to conditions for granting visas to Vietnamese citizens in a new policy from the ROK’s Ministry of Justice.
Permanent residents in HCM City, Hanoi and Da Nang will be granted 5-year visas. The visa holders can stay in South Korea for up to 30 days, with no restrictions on number of entries during five years. Those who apply for this visa do not have to prove their financial capability, income and occupation.
South Korea will grant long-term 10-year visas, with no restriction on number of entries to lawyers, physicians, university professors, directors of enterprises with investment capital of over VND100 billion, people finishing university in South Korea or those with a master’s degree or higher from overseas schools.
The visa holders can stay in South Korea for up to 90 days.
Currently, the biggest problem applying for visas to South Korea is the requirement to prove financial capability (savings books, properties). Sai Gon Tiep Thi newspaper interviewed many residents in HCM City and found that many of them are planning to apply for visas to South Korea because of the new policy. Travel firms have also said the same thing.
The outbound division head of a Hanoi-based travel firm said that many Hanoians have called to ask about the new policy. Some travelers, who began following procedures for visas to South Korea last month, now want to apply for long-term visas in accordance with the new law.
“The travelers booking tours to South Korea account for 30 percent of our total outbound travelers. The South Korean market has been growing very rapidly, but the growth rate will be even higher thanks to the new regulation on visas,” said Tu Quy Thanh, CEO of Lien Bang Travelink.
Korean officials also believe that more Vietnamese travelers will come to South Korea as complicated procedures have been removed.
Jung Chang Wook, chief representative of KTO, estimates that about 450,000 Vietnamese will come to South Korea this year, an increase of 40 percent over last year. Vietnam is South Korea’s seventh largest market.
Jung said at a culture and tourism event held in HCM City on December 11 that long-term visas will double the number of Vietnamese travelers.