I will soon start my internship (6 Months) in South Korea and I wanted to ask if it is possible to go there as a tourist and do all the paperwork there. I basically have all the documents I need but still had some complications in the embassy in my home country. I will soon go back to the country where I study (Germany) and from there I will fly to Korea. I could also try to apply to the internship visa in Germany but it is far from where I am and I am not sure it will be ready on time. Anyone had some experience changing status in Korea?

The visa in question would be a C4 visa.

1 Answer 1


While I have been fortunate enough not to have to deal with it personally, I know it is possible. While possible, it is much easier to do this from overseas.

From the Korean Immigration Office website:

As a general rule, foreigners seeking to participate in activities not permitted under their current status must first depart from Korea, obtain a new status that corresponds with the desired status, then re-enter Korea with the newly obtained status and status.

However, should it be possible to meet the requirements for the new status without having to depart from Korea, limited change of status can be made upon passing a rigid examination.

Immigration officials are given quite a bit of flexibility, but they have to justify what they do. In the end, humans are the ones backing up the rules, and if they like you, it is much easier to get what you want. If you're not a fluent Korean speaker who understands the culture inside and out, it's usually not worth trying to get them to bend the rules for you.

I would highly recommend applying from your home country first.

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