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Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

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gilbert.a.h
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Joined: 10/07/2010
Questions about Credit Cards in Korea
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Howdy All,

I am wondering if anybody has any advice about getting a credit card in Korea. First of all, I am an E-2 holder and I am in my second year of living in Korea.

I'd like to get a visa or master card credit card within Korea. I plan on being in Korea for at least ten more years, so I think I should get one for emergencies.

My bank informed me that the one that I can get for sure is a credit card with a deposit, but they didn't elaborate well. First they said it was prepaid, which makes me think it is just a gift card, and not a credit card. I am looking for something that has a low limit, even 100,000 is fine for now, that I can actually use as a credit card.

Does anybody have any advice where to apply for a real credit card for someone like me-

 

Thanks!

iatza
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Joined: 11/02/2010
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

I think it might be best to call VISA or MCard directly to ask, rather than going through your bank here.  Their contact numbers for Korea are easy to find online.

Paul Gaasenbeek
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Joined: 08/25/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

02 2000 8438 this is for english speakers.

samsung visa. they give them out to foreigners. the may only give them out ot people at unis or public schools though but you can give them a try. it is a normal card. not prepaid. normal starting limit is like 2mil i think. good luck.

143busan
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Joined: 08/07/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

Also...I believe you'll have to provide a proof of wage history.  If you get paid through direct deposit into ur bank account, your bank book will do.  It's really up in the air.  I've heard of E2 holders with Uni jobs, with a year of steady pay get turned down.  I've seen E2 holders who were less established be approved. 

If you need one for emergencies, you can always get one by putting in a deposit.  For example, if you want a million won limit, you leave a million won deposit with the bank, use your card as though it were a credit card, then get ur deposit when u close out ur account.  I did this and got a Visa from KB when I couldn't get approved for a regular credit card.  But be careful...in Korea...unless you specify at time of purchase you want to pay in installments, you will be responsible for the entire credit card balance each month.  The positive thing is if you do pay off each  month, you aren't charged interest. 


curlyces
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Joined: 12/31/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea
KEB bank offers credit cards to E2 visa holders if they have been at the same company / school for 1 year - you have to open a current account with them but it is easy to apply for the credit card and the limit is linked to your monthly salary.
majuang
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Joined: 11/24/2010
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea
Much of the advice given here already is good and accurate. A lot of Korean banks (cc companies) don't give much/any credit to foreigners without good solid proof of regular income; they'll require you to put the deposit money down on your credit card which you can pull from. I myself have steady income and don't get more than 2 million credit. That can help you at least USE a card and benefit from all the discounts at restaurants, movies, etc. If you can prove ongoing regular wages, you may be approved for about 1 or 2 million won credit. Try KEB (Korea Exchange Bank): They give you your credit statement (online and paper) entirely in English and have an online English interface for viewing bills and paying them. They also have english Customer service! Good luck.
mcj1983
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Joined: 10/06/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

Just got off the phone to Samsung.

They ''do not offer credit cards to foreigners in the education field''. I have a meeting at 1pm tomorrow with KEB, let's see how that goes...

lee-bum-suk
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Joined: 10/26/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

This is nonsense. This is exactly how I got my KEB card. Some lady comes around campus like once a year and offers you a choice of cards if you wish.

lee-bum-suk
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Joined: 10/26/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea
oops...I misread. KEB should be more accomidating. Samsung I have no ideaa about.
Paul Gaasenbeek
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Joined: 08/25/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea
every semester at my uni people walk around looking to sign people up. i got my samsung card just this way and just the other day someone from shinhan bank came by looking to sign me up. maybe you need to work at a uni or something? i know it is not my visa status as my office mate has an e2 and he just got a card. the note about samsung is surprising as i have a card and the number i posted is for english speakers.
mcj1983
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Joined: 10/06/2009
Re: Questions about Credit Cards in Korea

Hey Paul,

That could well be the case... when I called that number you provided, they said the policy had changed in May. I told them I could prove long-term residency and a solid income, they trotted out the  ''foreigners in the education field'' bollocks...


Ah well, I only needed it to book a flight home, which I've now done on my British card anyway.

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