Korea–>China–>Korea; Chinese Visa Experience
Hello fellow travelers:
Today we SUCCESSFULLY attained out Visas to China from South Korea!!!! And here was our experience.
You have to book your vacation on blind faith b/c you need all your information to fill out the application and apply for the visa. You got this! It is honestly not as big of a deal as it seems. Deep breath, you PCSed- this is gonna be a breeze!
1) Start by going to this website: https://www.visaforchina.org/SEL1_EN/
2) Collect your basic and supporting documents as listed on the site. NOTE: Bring copies for each application (i.e. my husband and I are on the same flight itinerary, so we needed two copies, one for each application.)
-Passport: Tourist/Travel Passport (not official), we ALSO brought copies. They need copies of the main page and the SOFA stamp page. They will make copies there for 100won.
-Application: on site listed above, fill in, print, print name and sign
-Photo: standard passport photo, photo booth at embassy, 10,000 won each
-Proof of Legal Status: Orders and military IDs (they did not make a big deal out of this. They did verify my SOFA stamp in MY passport as the spouse. My husband did not need it with his orders and military ID)
-Copies of any other prior Chinese visas (N/A doe us)
b) Supporting Documents:
-Flights with names on them, with return flight information
-Hotel information, including address and phone number (both should be listed in your application.
-Any additional information about what you plan to do, like if you booked a tour. They did not give us a hard time about this.
3) Go to the Chinese Embassy in Seoul.
Opens at 09:00, we took the train and got there at 10:30, it was not a problem. It is in Seoul Square, literally across the street from Seoul Station. You will walk under the street through the subway station entrance to get to the building.
a) Go up the escalator to the second floor.
b) Turn right and take the elevator in the “middle,” there are plenty of signs.
c) Get into the ‘Information Line’ first, they will check all of your paperwork and tell you if anything needs to be fixed. You can use the internet, print, take a picture in the photo booth, refill out the application with pen and paper, make copies… so relax a little! You can do this!
d) Once everything is good-to-go they will give you a number and you will wait to give the packet to that person. She checks the paperwork… it was a breeze for us at that point. She did not scrutinize the fact that my husband brought 3 sets of orders: Originals, pin point, and my amendment.
e) Hang out near-by in Meongdong or the mall, you want to stay close because they take your number just in case they have an issue with the paperwork. We did not get a call.
f) Return at 3:30 if you get the urgent/same day/10yr visa, as we did. It says that they give you your passport back b/t 3:30-4:30, we got there at 3:30 and were already 8th in line. We then waited until 5:30 for them to actually start calling people up! THIS IS WHEN YOU PAY 245,000 won, pp. We were getting worried that we were going to miss our train. But once they started calling people, it went really quickly. They did not read the number out loud in english, so I had to pay keen attention, and jump up when I thought I had been passed… which I was! More than once
people tried to cut me in line, or claim to have my number.