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Published: October 13th 2010
Leaving Australia was more stressful than I thought....
Firstly I got to bed a little late due to the fact I got chatting to guys over supper & then had to pack & use up the internet time I'd paid for! Then my alarm failed to go off at 4am - I looked at my watch & saw it was 04:15 & my taxi was due at 04:25... Argh! Up, dressed, last minute stuff into the bag, hostel sheets & card dumped in respective boxes & outside by 04:26. No taxi... 7 minutes later still no taxi... I need the hostel card (which I'd handed in) to get back in to use the free taxi phone to order another... luckily a minute or two later a taxi showed up (the driver didn't have good english so I've no idea if it was the one I ordered or not). Got to the airport bus ok & off to the airport. My last & biggest scare of the morning (bear in mind it was still only a little after 5am by this point) was when I handed my passport to the check in lady & she checked my visa: "This visa expires on 19th December 2010 & your ticket says you return on the 26th..." What?! Now as I'd understood the terms on the website when I got my visa (this is an electronic one so no paperwork with it) the visa is valid for a year, with mutiple entries but no entry may be longer than 3 months. 3 months from when we arrived would be the 19th Dec. I told her this, she wasn't sure so called her boss... He said no no no, it is only valid for three months, you will have to change your flights. Ah. I was told I could talk to the guy at the immigration desk about my 'Options'. So panicing more than a little I headed through the airport checks to find the customs guy. I reached him & explained what had happened & what they said, "oh no, it's valid for a year, the 19th December is when your first visit expires" he says. So, in fact, exactly what I thought! Phew! Stupid check-in staff! I really should write to them to complain about the stress they put me through!
Anyway I am safely settled in a lovely hostel Auckland with free wifi. I shall post a proper update shortly 😊
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