been busy with some stuff, please bear with us for the lack of content. we will be back shortly
One fine Tuesday morning i was at the Croatia consulate with our clients waiting to be attended to . The people that were being served at that time was a slightly elderly couple who were planning to do some travelling across Europe in the coming months. Very organised, they were! They had already sorted out their visas for another state- Austria and after completing the Austria visa they had then been advised that they would need a visa to Croatia as well, since they would be visiting there.
The consular officer attending to them went through their passports and discovered that they had an Austrian Schengen visa. Next he asked them, “What are you doing here?. Applicant blankly replied that he was seeking a Croatian visa as they would be stopping by there on their travels. Consular:“But you have a Schengen visa already in your passport, you don’t need for us to give you another visa to enter Croatia,unless if you didn’t have this one”
On hearing this, i thought to myself “C’mon, even i knew that!” but then again,they don’t do what i do…the husband is probably an Engineer and the wife is a Ancient language lecturer at some university..all they know is that they needed to take a break! Sad…OK at least upon hearing this they can just make a U-turn and save a few Rands to use on their holiday, never mind the time they spent gathering requirements they need and travelling all the way to PTA to the consulate.
The couple was clearly deflated and to add insult to injury…they had already paid for the Croatian visa. Where they had gotten the price for the visa, nobody knows?? but the amount they had paid was not sufficient…So now they are in a consulate they didn’t need to be in and have paid an insufficient fee for a visa they didn’t need! Talk about having bad days.
To cut the long story short,they ended up requesting the consular to go ahead with the visa application since they had already traveled and paid (which means they had to pay an additional amount for a non essential visa).
Where had they gotten the information that had led them to end up here??
It turns out, that it was at the consular they had visited prior to this application…OK?Why ask about information pertaining to Croatia at another country’s consulate?? The best people to ask about matters involving Croatia is the Croatian consulate themselves! That said, i still do understand what these applicants went through. On a normal day, when you ring any consulate to inquire they will answer only at the 175th phone call attempt and if its the general email…you are lucky if it even delivers or gets opened…even if your life depends on it!
Anyway….that’s were we come in.
Contrary to popular belief most visa applications for Africa and abroad can be done by VisaRequest and don’t need applicant to go in person unless Embassy requests so. Most Schengen(EU) states mainly require applicants to come in person for the their first application as they need their fingerprints taken. VisaRequest assists with this first application and even sends a consultant with applicant to the appointment! Subsequent applications the client does not need to be there as the consulate will already have their data.
We have been in existence for the past seven years and have become very competent at what we do. We have invested in the infrastructure and technical expertise and are confident that we meet any criteria required of us to justify our capabilities in delivering on quality service
VisaRequest is a platform that assists applicants with all the relevant information and application forms for visa applications. Our consultants are there to take applicants through every step, assist where there is need for clarity and facilitate with some of the requirements needed such as travel medical insurance and flight itineraries. We make sure we escort our applicants to appointments so that if anything arises it can be urgently dealt with. We do not sell forms or requirements, as you can easily access them on our website by logging in and downloading them. Once you engage with us we are at your disposal and ensure that we submit your application knowing its 99% accurate and you will get your visa, rather than being turned away for a minor detail or being notified that you don’t need a visa when you have already sorted everything out as you have just seen. We trust our clients and are so confident of our outcomes that we settle all dues with embassy and only require applicant to settle this when their visa is issued.
We aim to assist clients and make the applications FAST. EASY. HASSLE FREE. So yes, at times it may seem so easy that applicants such as yourself may question…but trust us when we say,it is not always as simple. Information is Power. VM
In our daily experiences, people end up at the VisaRequest doorstep for different reasons. We just thought we should pick five out of the tons of reasons and share them with you:
1.The consular staff at Embassy do not speak English and application form is in Arabic!
2.Applicant needs assistance with filling in application form/requirements and embassy phones or VAC lines/emails are NEVER answered/ responded to.
3.Application for visa needs to be paid for online but the darn system the embassy is using isn’t accepting their credit card.
4.Embassy has already closed its doors to receiving applications…and its only 12 midday!
5.Applicant doesn’t want to go to embassy a million times and still be told that some requirement is wrong or missing with application….Applicant:“why did you wait for the third visit to tell me that bank statements should only be in English…you saw they were in Afrikaans the first time i came” Consular staff: “uh sorry, English only…next”
Like i mentioned before,the reasons are too many to mention all…but bottom line is some of the stressful situations can be avoided. In most consulates you don’t have to submit in person and for Schengen states you only need to go in person once every ‘so many’ years to renew your bio metric data…then after that…you just use VisaRequest and their reliable drivers/courier service to process your visas whilst you carry on with your hectic schedule or sun bathing. Take our advice…Just avoid the visa application process headache. VM
Please feel free to add some of your visa application headaches…
We received an inquiry from one of our clients the other day. Lets call him Ken for privacy sake
As usual we successfully processed a DRC 6 months multiple entry visa for Ken that was issued out mid December 2013 and valid until June 2014
Unfortunately Ken was held up then only managed to travel to DR Congo this month – March which is about three months after the issuance of the visa.
Upon entry immigration officials told Ken that the visa is not valid any more due to the fact that he had entered 3 months after issue date of visa which was December 2013. He ended up paying $100 penalty as according to customs official, ‘the attached visa had expired.’
(According to DRC visa information provided it states that Validity:3 months from date of issue)
The Customs officials further told Ken that they would not be able to use this visa any more as according to them it had expired even though the stamp says it should be valid until June.
This sort of a situation can happen to anyone and when you are in it it’s hard to tell who’s wrong or right because as the traveler you feel out of your depth, when denied access over such a reason. Ken actually traveled one day before the ‘alleged 3 month validity expiry’ but because he desperately needed to enter this country he was rendered helpless and to some extent he may even have felt that this was just a corrupt official trying to get a few dollars out of him.Nobody really knows.
Unfortunately in this situation the visa sticker/stamp does not show this condition but more often than not other visas do highlight this….so next time you get a visa, thoroughly check it and even ask us about this condition if your initial travel plans change.VM
As a visa application assistance service provider one of the most daunting tasks is being able to read between the ‘application form’ lines and guaranteeing an applicant that their application shall be successful…this is basically sticking your neck out there for something that you have little control over. But yes! irregardless of the uncertainty that comes along with the business, we have been able to navigate in this ‘mine field’ service industry we operate in for the past seven years…we’ve seen it all, the good_the bad_ the ugly, thus they are no more surprises for us or our supporters_the clients.
This blog will be “bits and pieces” of insight into the background drama that happens to carry out fast, hassle free visas to you our beloved supporters. VM