South Korea is an excellent study destination for international students. Besides the quality education from its world-class universities, you’ll have the chance to explore its stunning sceneries and local culture.

To get started on your journey to this beautiful country, make sure you know how to get a student visa, known as D-2, in South Korea. You will need this if you take a full-time degree, such as a bachelor’s, master’s, or Ph.D. With this, you can stay for up to two years.

In this article, you’ll learn what documents you need to prepare for your student visa application. It is also crucial to have an idea of how much money you need for your stay. Lastly, you’ll learn the steps on how to get a student visa in South Korea.

Steps on Applying for a South Korean Student Visa

Step 1. Apply to an Educational Institution in South Korea

Before you can start your application for a Korean student visa, you’ll need to be accepted by a university or college in South Korea. In this case, you make sure to send your study application and give it your best shot to get the acceptance letter.

Step 2. Complete Your Visa Requirements

Besides the standard requirements for Korean student visa application, you might need to submit specific documents depending on your country of origin. For example, suppose you’re from China. In that case, you’ll need to submit a diploma issued by the Chinese Ministry of Education accredited certification center.

Step 3. Submit Your Visa Application at the South Korean Embassy in Your Home Country

You can submit your student visa application at the Republic of Korea embassy in your home country. To learn more about embassy information, visit this link first. From there, you can choose your home country from the drop-down list for ROK Missions Overseas and click on Go. It will automatically direct you to the South Korean embassy website in your home country.

The embassy website will provide you with information about visa applications. It is also where you can download the application form. Lastly, you can also check the website to know how much you’ll need to pay for the application fee for a Korean student visa. You can also contact the embassy before your visit. Some embassies, like in the United States, require visa applicants to pre-book their appointment online.

Step 4. Receive Your Visa

The processing time for your visa application may depend on your home country. However, make sure to submit only the completed requirements for a student visa in Korea. The processing period may take longer if you need to provide additional requirements or your documents need to be further verified.

But if you’re short on time, you might want to coordinate with the embassy to see if they can help you get it faster. Once they release it, make sure to collect your student visa personally.

Step 5. Book Your Flight

Due to recent quarantine requirements before entering South Korea, you might need to arrive at least two weeks before the semester starts. In this case, you might need to book your flight before you receive your visa.

On the other hand, you can also book a flight as soon as you receive your visa. However, this option might cost you more.

Step 6. Arrive in South Korea

Once you get to South Korea, you’ll need to apply for an Alien Registration Card if you’re planning to stay for over 90 days. You’ll have to complete this crucial step at the Immigration Office in South Korea within 90 days of your arrival. Additionally, the Immigration Office allows you to apply for a student visa extension if your current student visa does not cover your entire study duration.

Documents Needed for Korean Student Visa Applications

To apply for a student visa (D-2), here are the documents you need to prepare the following:

  • Visa application form
  • Passport
  • One copy of the passport ID page
  • Passport-size photo, taken within the last 6 months
  • Photocopy of Business Registration Certificate of your destination educational institution
  • Standard acceptance letter or certificate of admission from the educational institution
  • Documentary proof of your highest level of education
  • Proof of financial stability

When submitting your documentary proof of the highest educational level, you’ll need to provide the original copies. However, you can still submit copies of your diploma or other proof of degree if an authorized school officer verifies its authenticity.

FAQs: Student Visa Applications for South Korea

How Much Money Do You Need to Show When Applying for a Korean Student Visa?

To secure a South Korean Student Visa, you’ll need to provide proof of financial stability. This means that you have existing funds to pay for at least one year’s tuition and living expenses. To give you an idea here are the tuition fees based on degree level and program:

  • Associate degree: $1,500 to $7,300
  • Undergraduate degree: $1,100 to $10,800
  • Graduate degree: $1,100 to $20,900

Universities also charge application fees ranging from $60 to $150. Make sure to check the tuition fees with your destination school. You can also inquire if there are any scholarships to help you fund your education.

Besides tuition, you’ll also need to prove that you can fund your living expenses for at least one year. Here are some expenses you’ll need to consider when applying for a student visa in Korea:

  • Dormitory: $420 to $1550 per semester
  • Rent outside school: $300 per month and security deposit of $3,000 to $5,000
  • Boarding house: $300 to $500 per month
  • Food: $300 to $400 per month
  • Medical insurance: $20 per month
  • Transportation: $1 to $1.2 in buses, and $1.1 to $2.5 in subway
  • Internet: $20 per month

Keep in mind that these fees depend on where you live. Check the location of the campus, whether it is in a metropolis or suburb, to determine the cost of living.


We hope that this article on getting a Korean student visa was helpful! To learn more about studying in this country with endless opportunities, please check out the Study in South Korea Page. If you’re interested in studying abroad, make sure to also check out the Available Programs for International Students!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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