Tips For Your Amazing Summer Journey
Tips For Your Amazing Summer Journey
  • Lee Jung seungji 기자
  • 승인 2008.06.08 00:50
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The summer vacation is drawing near.  I am going to journey abroad, guessing that the summer vacation could be a good chance for me to travel.  However, I don’t know certain points about traveling in detail.  Please, advise me about my questions.

“If I want to travel to another country, what are the regulations concerning my passport?  Also, how can I deal with each country’s individual situation?”

1. Passport  
The expiration date of your passport and possible term of entry into countries
People tend to overlook the expiration dates of their passports.  When the due date of your passport is still more than six months away, it is generally possible to enter a pertinent nation.  Therefore, you must just check without fail whether there are still six months left before your passport expires or not. However, every rule has its exceptions.  In the case of Finland, for example, entrance into the nation is possible when ‘the length of your visit + over three months’ remains.  In addition, some countries may require a tourist visa. If you want to know the entry rules for various countries in detail, you can check by calling or visiting the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade or the Embassy of the relevant country.
Tel : (02)2100-7959~94


Extension or reissue of emergency passport
If there is not much time remaining before your passport expires and you feel like you won’t have enough time to enter your destination, or if the date of the journey is close and you feel there is insufficient time to reissue or extend the dates of your passport, then you can extend your passport or get a single entry visa issued on your departure day in the third floor of Incheon International Airport.  Up to three hours before departure, this department offers services such as extending the validity of passports and reissuing single entry passports.  Their office hours are 09:00~17:00 from Monday to Friday, and one hour is needed to process the documents, but if your situation is really an emergency, it is possible to dispense them in 30 minutes.  On that day, you should bring two pictures of yourself, your return airplane ticket, current passport, and identification card.
Tel : 032-740-2773~4

“What are the differences between the various foreign exchange agencies? Also, how can I exchange my money cheaply?”

2. Exchanging Money

Exchanging money in an airport
If you exchange your money in the airport, you might pay 5~10 won more on each dollar than you would in a regular bank.  In other words, when you change 1,000 dollars, you will be charged 10,000 won commission.  Why is foreign exchange in the airport more expensive?  That’s because it is possible to exchange money here 24 hours a day throughout the year.  Therefore, it would have been better to change your money in another place.  Airports impose a commission of about 10 won more than banks or 20 won more than cyber-banking on foreign exchange.  Depending on the amount of money, you could retrench between 30-70% of your expenditure on exchange commission.


Exchanging money in a bank
How about the commission charged by Korea Exchange Bank (KEB)?  People are likely to think that KEB charges less commission than other banks because of its popular image.  However, while the rate is similar to other banks in some cases, it is more expensive in other cases.  For instance, KEB charges 5,000 won commission when you exchange less than 500 US dollars, which is cheaper than that of other banks; however, when changing 1,000 US dollars, KEB is more expensive, charging 10,000 won as opposed to 7,000 won at Kookmin Bank and Hana Bank.  So, it might be beneficial for you to go to Kookmin Bank or Hana Bank if you are remitting 1,000 dollars or more abroad.


Exchanging money online
The commission charged for exchanging money online could be discounted by up to 70% due to ‘cooperative buying’, or the adding up of money from many clients in a KEB club for foreign exchange.  Kookmin Bank imposes commission discounted up to 50% while Shinhan Bank offers a 40% discount as well as free travel insurance.  In the case of Woori Bank, you must exchange more than 100 dollars, in which case they can offer you a 35% discount on commission for sums less than 2,000 dollars, 50% when less than 5,000 dollars, and 60% when exchanging more than 5,000 dollars.

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