Your alien registration is about to expire but you don’t want to leave the country just yet. Fear not! You have options: you can either extend your visa or switch your visa to a D-10 visa - the job seeking visa. You need to consider what you plan on doing after your contract finishes, in order to determine which route you want to take.
Extending your Visa
When you extend your visa, you can be given up to 30 days on your Alien Registration Card (ARC). You need to apply before your ARC expires. You also need to show that you have plans to leave the country (i.e. with an air ticket purchased). You’re visa will be extended until the day you leave which must not be more than 30 days from your ARC expiration date.
à Keep in mind:
The Pros to Extending
The Cons to Extending
The process of extension is easy! You can visit your district immigration office. Give over your documents to the immigration officer. They will examine your departure date and mark the date on the back of your ARC in permanent marker. After that you are legally free to stay in the country beyond your original ARC expiration date. It takes only a few hours!
If you apply online, the processing time is at least five business days. Scan your documents and then follow the application procedure. Be aware that only some visa holders can apply through the HiKorea Immigration website.
à Note: You can make a reservation for an appointment at immigration to save time. Go to the Hi Korea online reservation service.
Online Extension permitted for the following visas:
Cultural Arts(D-1), Study Abroad(D-2), General Training(D-4), Journalism(D-5), Religious Affairs(D-6), Professorship(E-1), Research(E-3), Technology Transfer(E-4), Professional Employment(E-5), Non-professional Employment(E-9),Family visitation(F-1, younger than 17 only), Dependent Family(F-3), Working Holiday(H-1), Working Visit(H-2)
à Note: E-2 visa holders must visit immigration in person.
Documents required for in person and online applications:
The D-10 Job Seeking Visa
The D-10 visa is a relatively new visa installment offered by Korean immigration. This visa allows holders to stay for up to six months in Korea legally with the purpose of looking for a job. You must be actively searching for employment, not just bumming around the country. This is the perfect visa for you if you came to Korea with a job, have now finished your contract and want to move to a new job. Rather than packing up, heading back home and job searching from your home country, you can stay in Korea and search here. Once you find a job you don’t need to go on a visa run, you can easily transfer your D-10 to your new employment visa.
The D-10 visa may also be applied for from abroad. It’s a great option if you’re hesitant to sign up for a year-long work contract without first meeting your future boss or learning about Korea. However, if you have never worked for a Korean company in Korea eligibility conditions apply (see below).
There are 3 different criteria to be eligible for a D-10. You only need to fall into one category to apply. If you do NOT have experience working or living in Korea you must fit into number 3.
You need to show proof of either (or both).
If you switch job fields you may be required to bring additional documentation to immigration to prove that you are qualified for the new line of work
D-10 Visa Documents required:
For those applying within Korea after job contract finishes:
For those applying outside of Korea or from tourist visa:
All application documents can be downloaded from the HiKorea Immigration Website. You can also make reservations for an appointment at immigration so you won’t have to wait in the long lines. Do that online too.
Phone: 1345, press 3 for English- use this number to call for all visa or immigration inquires. Do not call the individual branch offices.
Lindsey lived and worked in Seoul, South Korea for over 5 years. While there, she dabbled in different areas of work and explored the culture. She spent time teaching elementary students, business English to adults and high school students about college preparation. She also studied Korean, wrote blogs and tasted as many foods as she possibly could including fermented skate fish. Over the years, Lindsey developed a love for Korea and the culture. She is keen to share her knowledge of Korea with others and she will always consider Korea a second home.