Getting registered as an alien at Seoul Immigration Office

The first thing it comes to my mind when I read this thread title is: Whats the use for this so called “registration” and is it difficult? When an alien (foreign) is coming to Korea an his stay will exceed 90 days of stay. As a visitor you are supposed to register but I been told that you may not do it and you wont be prosecuted or anything. So if “nothing” happens why would you go through all the process to get it? Well basically the when you register they will give you a registration number that you will need for things like:

  • Getting a Korean bank account.
  • Getting a mobile phone number with a plan.
  • Leasing.
  • Applying to change Visa type or extend period.

In anyway from the previous experience at the public health center I learn that this number is useful, because of this and future plans on extending the period I have chose to apply for it.

Seoul Immigration OfficeSeoul Immigration Office

Where people waits long hours

The first time I went there I spent about 4 hours waiting for my turn to speak to the immigration officer. At the end I could apply for the registration since I didn’t had an enrollment letter from the school. I couldn’t persuade the officer to accept my application with the receipts of the courses I already had paid or the certificate of admission. A couple of days I went to Yonsei KLI to get this so called letter.

On my second visit to the immigration office i made sure to go with all the required documents. For a D-4 visa holder for me those where:

  • Passport.
  • 1 Photograph attached to application form (you can get the form at the office).
  • Enrollment letter.
  • 10,000 won. CASH other stuff has to be paid with stamps, but for registration you can pay on cash.

I arrived at 9:30 and left the building at nearly 1:30, effective time of talk with officer was 5 minutes. After giving the application I was asked to get my fingerprints scanned, this took another 3 minutes. The office is crowded most of the time, there are many chairs however there is more people, if you wait for 25 mins you can probably get a chair when someone is summoned upon one of the officers.

The hole experience is not bad however i found Korean where very efficient in almost every way so I guess they had set a standard for me. Immigration office wasn’t within that standard 😛 jaja.

Anyway I’m glad I had my application received, at the end I’ll have to wait another 3 weeks to go an pick up my registration card (you could pay them to mail it to you, however I chose to pick it up).

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