The South Korean government has announced that it will tighten its testing requirements for all international travelers.

Key Points:

  • Beginning Jan. 20, individuals entering South Korean must have proof of a negative PCR test taken within 48 hours of departure.
    • Authorities will reduce the validity of a negative PCR test from 72 to 48 hours.
  • Self-administered tests, including self-administered PCR tests, are not considered valid.

Additional Information: Test results must be in English or Korean. If the test result is in another language, a translated copy in English or Korean must be submitted with the original certificate. More information regarding the increased testing requirements is available here.

BAL Analysis: Travel restrictions and health requirements may change with little to no notice. Individuals are encouraged to check entry requirements posted on specific South Korean consulates’ websites before traveling. The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and BAL will provide additional updates as information becomes available.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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