Government Regulations Regarding Flights to South Korea
Overseas travel is obviously not just about throwing clothes into a backpack and heading to the airport, but with cheap flights to Korea available from several airports, it may seem that much easier. While this gives travelers more opportunities, there are still boxes that you need to check off to make sure any trip goes off without a hitch.
Standard TSA Procedures on Flights to Korea
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has not been quite as strange as it once was; travelers looking to go abroad should still keep in mind several key regulations.
One key element for many international travelers is the so-called “go-bag”. This includes a change of clothes, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant, and either a small bar of soap or alcohol wipes. This gives passengers some leeway if there’s either a delay on travel to South Korea or for anyone who has issues with baggage not catching up to them in time.
The key thing with this backup plan or any other piece of –carry-on luggage is trying to make life easier for the TSA officers during inspection. That means putting any liquids or similar items into one zip-lock bag, and making it easy for yourself to take out any cell phones or laptops if the TSA officer needs to see them.
Due to the fact that most people who are you taking advantage of cheap place to create are doing so is part of a longer trip, most of their packing list will end up in checked baggage. Even with that, sorting things into sections will limit the possibility of the government needing to rummage through your stuff and potentially making a mess of things.
Governmental Requirements for Travelers to South Korea
The State Department has relatively few rules regarding U.S. nationals traveling to South Korea except for a recommended application to the agency’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program that can help anyone who has lost their passport or runs into a similar issue while overseas.
While the rainy season is almost over, officials also note that Americans should keep track of any potential weather issues including typhoons that can make travel difficult or present a risk for those going to less-populated areas such as parts of Jeju Island.
When you arrive after taking a cheap flight from South Korea, it is important to note that the country has heightened its security regarding foreign nationals. While many people who take advantage of Skystub may have a Korean passport, those who don’t and are visiting family should be prepared to have their fingerprints and face recorded as part of the entry process. In addition, while there is no requirement for an entry visa for stays of up to 90 days, those who are planning on doing any work or consulting need to apply for a separate visa through their local South Korean consulate in order to avoid any potential fines and even deportation.
Republic of Korea Customs Requirements
The State Department notes that there are stringent regulations regarding importation and exportation of several materials:
- Firearms, ammunition and explosives
- Radio equipment
- Subversive materials per national regulations
Of special note are concerns that South Korean authorities have regarding prescription drugs. The Korea Food and Drug Administration requires a “bring-in permit letter” for even patients who use prescription narcotics and amphetamines prior to arrival and regularly restricts the import or export of certain health supplements.
Returning to the United States: Declaring Luggage Items
When you return on an Asiana or Korean Air flight back to the United States, you will receive a declaration form to fill out prior to landing. You should include all purchases and their value in dollars and it can also help to include anything that you had repaired while you were overseas. Keeping in mind that most household effects are duty-free, including paintings, stereos and other home furnishings as well as certain work tools and instruments. On the other hand, clothing, jewelry and other trinkets are likely to face customs duties. Each passenger, however, does have a limit of several hundred dollars for which no duty will be assessed which will limit costs.
Prior Preparation Makes South Korean Travel Simple
While there are a number of guidelines from both South Korean and United States agencies, they are all relatively simple to complete. The most important thing to do is to check off each item on your list to avoid any potential problems such as prescription drug concerns as well as custom duties. After that, you can focus on enjoying your time on the peninsula and visiting loved ones or the sights and sounds that make South Korea a prized destination for many travelers around the world.
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