The ICA 33rd World Cooperative Congress will be held from 1-3 December 2021 at the Grand Walkerhill (Seoul), 177 Walkerhill-ro, Gwangjang-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul, South Korea, and also online. The Congress is aimed at cooperative members, practitioners, academics, government representatives and anyone interested in the cooperative business model. Information on all sessions can be found in the programme. You can also read about all the speakers, facilitators, rapporteurs and panelists here.  

Can’t be in two places at once? Don’t worry — all sessions will be recorded and made available on the online platform to access for two months after the Congress ends. You will also be available to add your comments and access presentation materials on the online platform during this time.

Please note that all information presented here is subject to change due to the ongoing nature of the COVID-19 pandemic. Check back often for updates!


(This section was last updated on 2 November 2021)

The ICA team is actively monitoring the COVID-19 situation and will continue to provide updates here as they are available. The information below is based on what is current and may change as the situation evolves. The wellbeing and safety of our members is a priority. Please check back often for new information.

What happens after you register to attend Congress in person in Seoul? The ICA team gets to work to process the necessary paperwork to make your journey as smooth as possible. Here’s a step-by-step guide to the process, from registering to arriving.

1. If you’re planning to attend the World Cooperative Congress in Seoul, register here

2. Once you pay the registration fee in full, the ICA team will validate your registration. 

3. You will then receive an email from the ICA containing an online form for you to complete, so the ICA team can apply for quarantine exemption on your behalf (this will be done for you).  To enter Korea, you need to apply for a Visa or a Korean Electronic Travel Authorisation (K-ETA, which is a visa waiver), depending on the country you are coming from. 

a) If you are from one of the following 49 countries you are eligible to apply for a K-ETA (visa waiver). To do this, here is what you need to do:

  • Apply for the K-ETA on this website or through the app.
  • Once you have done this, fill in the online form that will be sent to you by the ICA (You need to upload your K-ETA here).

b) If you are from one of these 63 countries that were formerly eligible for K-ETA you can still receive a visa waiver, but the application for it will be done for you by the ICA. All you have to do is complete the same online form that the ICA team will send you after you have completed your registration. If you have already begun your application process for a visa, don’t worry! Read on.

4. You must next send the completed form back to the ICA team. Once this is done, you will receive another email from the ICA team with the completed form and other necessary information to complete the quarantine exemption application process. Please check to make sure it’s accurate, sign it (e-signature or print/sign/scan) and send it back to the ICA team.   

If you need a visa, the ICA team will submit the quarantine exemption documents on your behalf to the Korean embassy or consulate in your country. Once the ICA team informs you that this step is complete, you can check with the embassy/consulate on the status of your visa application. If you have already visited the Korean embassy/consulate to start your visa application process, you can continue to check with them. 

**Helpful tip: When you are completing visa or K-ETA applications, please select “visit” when responding to the purpose of your travel. 

5. You will receive the official document stating you are exempt from quarantine by email. Please print four copies of this document and bring it with you on your journey to Seoul.

6. Three days prior to your departure for Seoul, complete a PCR test in your home country. Mark it on your calendar today! When you receive the negative results, print four copies of this document and bring it with you on your journey to Seoul. 

7. When you arrive in Seoul, members of the ICA team will welcome you at the airport and transport you to the Walkerhill Hotel, where you will be required to complete a PCR test. Once you have completed this step, and if you are staying at a different hotel, the ICA team will provide you with the necessary transportation to get there.

8. The test results will take less than 24 hours. Until then, you are required to stay in your hotel room. We recommend you order room service and take this time to rest! 

9. Once you receive your negative test results from your hotel staff, you can move freely. But don’t forget to follow local safety rules, such as wearing your face mask in public places.



International travelers who are not vaccinated against COVID-19 are required to undergo a 14-day quarantine at their own expense upon arrival. 

Travelers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19  must be inoculated by COVID-19 vaccines approved by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use, and at least 2 weeks must have passed since your second dose. Currently, approved vaccines are: 

• AstraZeneca
• Pfizer 
• Janssen / Johnson & Johnson
• Moderna
• Sinopharm
• Sinovac
• Covishield

Please check the WHO website regularly for updates to this list. 

As of 1 November 2021, travelers from the following countries are NOT exempt from quarantine, regardless of their visa or vaccination status, and will be required to quarantine for the full 14 days. 

• Namibia
• South Africa
• Mozambique
• Myanmar
• Brazil
• Suriname
• Angola
• Uzbekistan
• Kazakhstan
• Kyrgyzstan
• Trinidad and Tobago
• Pakistan
• Peru
• The Philippines
• Zambia
• Djibouti

The ongoing quarantine situation will likely change. We will continue to monitor the travel requirements and restrictions. Useful information can also be found on the Korean Immigration Service website. This information is correct as of 2 November 2021.  


The World Cooperative Congress will be held at the Grand Walkerhill Seoul hotel, which is conveniently located in the heart of Seoul, the capital of the Republic of Korea. The city is served by Incheon International Airport (30 miles west of the city).

The most convenient place to stay for the Congress is the Grand Walkerhill Seoul hotel, which is surrounded by the spectacular views of the Hangang River and the Achasan Mountain. Here you will be able to relax and unwind while enjoying a wide variety of entertainment options with unmatched quality and service. The hotel has 557 rooms and 6 restaurants, where you will be able to enjoy Korean, Chinese, Italian, and other Western cuisines.

From the airport, Free shuttle buses will be available to transport attendees to the Grand Walkerhill Seoul Hotel from 27 to 30 November, and also from 3 December to 5 December. Schedules will be available soon. Taxi services are also available (USD $80) and you can book in advance through

Reservations for Grand Walkerhill Seoul: click here

Reservations for Vista Walkerhill Seoul: click here

Other hotels that are convenient and nearby are: Dong Seoul Hotel, Wish & Stay, Bali Tourist Hotel and Hotel the Designers Kondae.


Korea’s currency is the Korean Won (KRW/₩). Paper money comes in denominations of 1,000; 5,000; 10,000; and 50,000 won bills. Coins come in 10, 100, and 500 won. Click here to determine the conversion rate for your local currency.


Language: The language in the Republic of Korea is Korean. Some English is spoken in the capital, but it is recommended that you familiarise yourself with some basic phrases.

Time Zone: Korean Standard Time is GMT+9

Punctuality: Be on time. Punctuality is very important in the Republic of Korea. Make sure you arrive on time for sessions.

What to wear: The South Korean business dress code is formal.

Things to do: Seoul has a range of tourist attractions, from Hangang Art Park and Gyeongbokgung Palace to Namsan Seoul Tower and traditional markets. You can explore the city by going on a guided walking tour or hopping on the Seoul City Tour Bus.

Day trips and excursions: The ICA and local partners in Seoul will organise a series of day trips for those wishing to immerse themselves into the Korean culture. This will include the CoopTour to visit some of the local cooperatives. More information on this will be available shortly.

  • Do you have more questions? Send an email to And check back often for updates!
  • If you are a registering for a group, please send an email to for the group registration form.
  • Local registrants including groups from South Korea should register here.