A couple of terrible very bad mistakes that you should never make whilst planning your very expensive trip.

A couple of terrible very bad mistakes that you should never make whilst planning your very expensive trip.

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I make these mistakes so you don’t have to mmmkay, I’m a giver like that.

Don’t leave something potentially trip-ruining til the last minute if you can do it earlier.  Case in point.  I {like most NZ’ers} assumed that I would have no problem with my application for the USA Visa Waiver Program.  So, on Thursday night, 4 days before departure I sat down and filled out the minimal online forms for Ethan and I – E is traveling on his NZ passport so needed the waiver also.  Ethan’s was approved lickety-split, min was denied.  D E N I E D.

Don’t expect to be able to talk to a human at the American Consulate in Auckland either, that would make way too much sense.  Their handy info line diverts to a call centre in India.  Where those staff that man the line know pretty much nothing about travel complications and how to resolve them.

With no help to be found anywhere I realize that I need to apply for a Visa, earliest appointment Wednesday.  Plane leaves Tuesday.

I apply for an emergency appointment.  D E N I E D.

Are you taking notes?  Don’t do this to yourself, the stress is unbearable and when your eyes are red from crying all day it makes it hard to keep reading emails from ass-hats at WebJet.

On that note, here is my next little Travel Gem for you;

Never book potentially complicated flights that may have the remotest change of needing to be changed with www.webjet.co.nz.  They had a nice price on our fares, that I will admit.  However, their customer service stoops to lows I had never even imagined were possible.

To change a booking you submit an online request.  I did this Friday lunchtime.  19 hours later on Saturday night I received a reply quoting the price for the flight change and the new date but they had scheduled 9am instead of the 9pm flight I requested.  I shot off a quick email thanking them for their reply and pointed out the error.  Fast forward to Monday 6pm and I still had no email form WebJet despite calling them every 4 hours for the past 48 hrs.  Their phone service crew were unable to process the change themselves, refused to put me through to ticketing and said there was actually no way for them to even call the ticketing department!  It was like pulling teeth.  While crying.  And yelling.

Make these two terrible very bad mistakes and you too will have to put your ridiculously excited 7yo on a plane to the holiday of his dreams without you.  Yes E has Dave with him and yes they will be fine, but I’m missing out on all of that fun that goes along with doing something with your child for the first time {that they can really remember}.

Woe is me.  Fingers crossed for Wednesday, I am hoping to encounter no more ass-hats, or complications before I finally might be able to get on a plane Friday morning.  If my Visa gets approved, and if I can get it on time.

Viewing Deck

Dave and Ethan on the plane




  1. tarasutherland · August 1, 2012

    WOAH! Nothing much else to say except that really really really sucks!
    Fingers crossed you are on that plane on Friday chih

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