A timeline of what applying to EPIK is really like


Update: Bookmark and visit the new online location for this blog – http://www.blackeltabroad.com



Daisy Juarez, creator of Daisy Says blog put together a timeline that tracks a pretty accurate transition from one step to another when going through the EPIK applying process. And it IS a process!

– Stumbled upon EPIK Facebook page, began poking around and decided I wanted to apply (I found out about it through blogs and searching ESL career online)February
2- Submitted request for FBI check
-Requested letters of recommendation (Don’t wait til February, do this ASAP. Odds are you’re competing with current college kids planning for Upper degrees)
-Requested copy of university transcripts (request about 5 if they are free)Early March
-Got university degree notarized  (I did this and it was no point because I still had to pay to have it done at the State Dept.)
-Enrolled in TEFL course    ( I decided to take the CELTA)
-Received college transcriptsLate march:
-Received letters of recommendation (Requested them for early March)

2- submitted application
4- FBI check received
5- Received email stating I had made it onto interview stage
10- Interviewed via Skype
12- Received email stating interview passed (I got mine within 3 hours post interview – remember your response time WILL differ from others. dont stress!)
13- FBI check & diploma sent to get apostilled (I used RushDocs and HIGHLY recommend for the speed and accuracy)
24- Apostilled documents received
26- Final documents sent to EPIK Seoul office via Fed-Ex
29- Documents received by EPIK

3- Documents approved by EPIK coordinator (When using a recruiter, you first send it to the recruiter and they forward to EPIK office)
10- TEFL course completed
24- TEFL certificate received & emailed to EPIK coordinator

1-Received email stating placement made (I received mine LATE June/ Early July)
27-Contract and notice of appointment shipped from Seoul
29- Contract and notice of appointment received
30- Visa application mailed to Korean consulate

3- Visa application arrived at Korean consulate
5- Visa approved and mailed to me
9- Visa received
12- Booked one way flight to Seoul
(*Shop for goodies, stickers, gifts, etc.)
12-Deadline I’ve given myself to complete the online pre-orientation course (Finish this as soon as possible)
20- Arrive in Seoul, take bus to orientation location (Team 2 – Orientation in Daejeon KT HRDC)
21- First day of orientation

*Now while everyone has a unique timeline to their own experience, I didn’t really document mine. LOL I started in January as well and all paperwork, acceptance and visa receipt + flight booking took place til the middle of July. Now keep in mind this is for the Fall session. I’m not sure about starting dates for Spring acceptance however, my GUESS would be to apply for the CRC in August! It takes 8 weeks and you DON’T want that to be the reason you’re held up. Find 2 people to write your recs. and start working on a TEFL/CELTA/TRINITY course.

Also, if you do want to go through a recruiter, I definitely recommend Korvia. My recruiter was Rilee and she was awesome. I especially like how they provide you with a pre-paid phone and have events throughout the year for their successful applicants living in Korea.

Have any questions, feel free to ask!

Leave a comment


  1. OMG it takes this long just to get set for Fall?! I better start now! Thanks a million for posting this. I just found your blog through your EPIK advice video & I’m loving everything you blog & vlog. Thanks for your helping hand ^-^

    • My pleasure. Glad I could help. Yes if you want to start Fall i would DEFINITELY start now. My research began a year ago actually

  2. Hello! I’m going to apply this year, and there’s something I’m confused about… from this timeline, it seems that you can apply before you have your background check completed; is that true? Because I’m going to send my request in the next few days, and I know it takes forever, but I want to apply as soon as possible… What is the first batch of documentation that should be sent to EPIK? Is it just the application form and the letters of recommendation? Thanks so much!

    • Hi Patricia,

      Yes you can most certainly apply before your docs are in. In fact, that’s what you’re supposed to do. If you waited you’d NEVER get a placement LOL

      Apply as soon as they start accepting apps. I sent in my app for my background check in February and turned in my EPIK app the first day they accepted them. So once I was approved through EPIK, I only had a week or so to receive my completed CRC.

      Hope this helped. GOODLUCK!

  3. omg…my recruiter is Rilee! I completely agree–she is amazing. I love your blog. I’m getting ready for the Spring EPIK intake, so all of this has been so amazingly helpful 🙂

  4. Lish

     /  02/08/2013

    Hi! Thanks for posting your timeline. It gives a great overview of what to expect!

    What city were you assigned to? At what point in the process did you find out? How much say did you have? And do you think applying gives you a better chance of gettin your preferredf province/city?

    Thanks in advance 🙂

    • 1. Donghae
      2. I found out in June. 5 months after everything started
      3. Have for? If you mean when I came over, I was WAY under what they suggest. I came with about 300 and borrowed 100 from a friend. I would HIGHLY recommend coming with AT LEAST 600 because you WILL most likely want to go out during that first month when everything is new to you.
      4. If you meant applying early, then I would say NO. lol They place you where the need is. In my intake we couldn’t request the exact cities or places, we could only say city or rural. I put flexible. If you want Seoul placement, then YES YES YES!

      Good luck to you! 🙂

  5. Hey I wanted to know if the name on your diploma matched the name on your passport? I ask because I heard you could be denied an E-2 Visa if they don’t match.

  6. Chris

     /  04/11/2013

    I’m in something of a bind time-wise…I’ve discovered reading this post that I’ll be too late to apply for the August term (I’m going to try for March), but I would prefer to start work before then, at which point I expect to be locked in for a year. Since I’m unwilling to break a contract, I have to make a choice; take work at a private institution now and forgo the March term of EPIK, or don’t work for upwards of 10 months after I graduate and risk it all on the March term (with no guarantees of success I might add).

    This is a great post, and I was wondering if you could weigh in. I’m a BA in English who will have a TESOL by August and some volunteer ESL/tutoring experience. Are my chances of getting EPIK good enough to go all in on the March term? Many thanks in advance!

    • Hey Chris, we’re on the same boat about missing the August intake. I just started applications for both EPIK and private recruiting. I really want to get a Seoul placement, which can only be guaranteed through a hagwon, though I would be locked in for a year. I definitely want to do EPIK for its benefits, but I’ll also risk placing my bets all on the March term.

      Do you have any advice for us BeltaMia?

  7. if you want to be as close to Seoul as possible and have missed the deadline for fall, I would go with GEPIK. You’d be placed in the province surrounding Seoul and they tend to be more flexible than EPIK

  8. Cery

     /  07/17/2013


    I wish I had stubmbled upon your blog 7 months ago. There are so many useful information and tips on here.

    I actually began my application process around April, and it took such a long time gathering all of my documents together and having all of it notarized/apostilled. I went through a recruiter and passed the skype interview with EPIK. However, EPIK did not officially receive my documents until June 24th. I was told by my recruiter that I was not recommended to EPIK yet because the positions have been filled, so I am currently on a wait-list for the August 2013 intake.

    Would you happen to know the possibilities for securing a position for the August intake for applicants in my position?

  9. Em

     /  08/19/2013

    This has been the most worrying question I had, so thank you so much for the timeline! Did you need that many official transcripts, by the way? Why did you get 5 copies?

  10. Jo

     /  09/14/2013

    Hi I just want to ask if you don’t mind what was the interview like?

  11. Aaron

     /  05/14/2014

    What was the timeline after you got to korea? So u arrive in korea a day before orientation starts, then its a week long and you start teaching the week after? Or is there a week in between where you dont teach at the school? Haha i have lots of questions i just passed the interview for epik!

    • Em

       /  05/14/2014

      Aaron, I came in February. One week at orientation, where I didn’t know what school or grade level I was placed in until the last day, then on Friday I go to my school but the school year hadn’t officially started so it was just teachers getting things set up. On Monday I found out I had no classes for the entire week and that they were still figuring out the English class schedule. My office of education told us that if we happened to arrive on a day when school starts, they encourage the schools to ease us into teaching, not have us dive right in. Not all schools take this advice, however. I also had to go to the immigration office on Monday, which took a few hours. Good luck with your process!

  1. Process for Applying to teach English somewhere | Life of a Coral

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