중앙데일리

[LETTERS TO THE EDITOR]Some work needed at immigration office

June 13,2003
I am a student in Sogang University Language School, taking a Korean language course. All of the students who are in the language school must apply for a visa extension every semester at the Seoul Immigration Bureau. I have gone through this process six times, but I get very aggravated whenever I visit the immigration bureau.
First, the Seoul Immigration Bureau is always congested, since the office is located only at Mok-dong. It usually takes about four or five hours to extend the visa once. A long, irascible wait is involved, because there is an enormous number of visa applicants. But there is something more that exacerbates the irritation: the attitude of the employees of the immigration office toward foreigners. They are very unobliging. Also, their answers differ, confusing the visa applicants. Even the list of the documents necessary for a visa extension sometimes changes depending on whom you are talking to.
The Immigration Bureau is one of the most-visited government departments for foreigners in Korea. It gives foreigners their first impression of Korea. I hope the government can improve the facilities at the immigration office and the service by the employees to foreigners.


by Irina Goutsou


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