Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Caught in the Act

So yesterday, I finally got my passport back with my Moroccan visa. I say finally, but actually it was spot on time. But here's how my MDS Visa's experience went. Originally I phoned them about a week & half ago to arrange my Moroccan visa. And after giving me all the visa info and telling me that's be R205, I had to ask if there were any additional costs (surely it wasn't just going to be the visa price and their good will?). Yes, there was a Service Fee of R399. After debating what I thought was quite an exorbitant fee, I "signed up" last Monday and they promptly collected all my required documentation. Please note at this point, the dude I was dealing with didn't actually give me any payment information. I actually called them back to ask wtf. I mean I wasn't exactly prepared if I had to hand it over to the guy collecting my docs. Turns out when the visa is ready, they'd call me and delivery would only take place after payment. Fair enough, suits me fine.

Yesterday morning I called them, knowing from the embassy that a Moroccan visa takes 4 working days. So I figure it should be about ready. Yes, it turns out in fact it was - the guy (who must not be used to people doing their homework) told me it arrived late Friday afternoon ... hello, I know the Embassy closes at 1pm! But hey. Who cares, my passport was back containing my visa :) Yippee! So I confirm the bank details I'd gotten before and the payment amount (you see, when I called the Embassy, they said visa's cost R245 ... but at this point I figured that MDS Visa probably got some kind of discount or something?). Yes yes, everything was in order. So I transfered the cash and emailed the dude my proof of payment. My passport would be arriving later in the afternoon by courier :)

About 2 hours later, I get a call from the dude: I need you email address (this he asked for and I gave in our earlier conversation). Erm, I mailed you my proof of payment so you really should have it :P Turns out some folks are about as computer savvy as my grandmother (ie. not very). Ah yes he says, thanks very much. Fabulous and I go on my merry way. A few moments later I receive an email (and I quote):
Hi phillygirl the total amount is R695 The visa was R245 and my Service fee is R450 so the total is R695.00,Please could you please do a payment for the balance.

Excuse me? Now the increased visa fee is not a surprise ... although this is their freaking business so you'd think they might actually know in advance! But now, after I've actually paid, you want to increase your service fees, I'm sorry there are a few things I just simply won't stand for. And I thought the R399 service fee was high to begin with! So I phoned the supervisor and I said sorry, I was quoted R399 and I confirmed that fee with the dude this morning. There is no way I'm paying a "surprise" additional R51 (a 25% increase!).

In their defense, I will say that she didn't charge me the extra service fee and their courier service was on time and my passport is safely back in my hands. Also, I've been hearing from JofH (who is also trying to get visa's) that there is another visa company charging R430 service fee and you still have to go and drop off and collect your passport yourself (some place in Fourways)!! Ridiculous. So at this point I'm not entirely sure if I'd recommend this bunch or not ... they may just be the best of a bad bunch, as the saying goes. But, if you do use them, be sure to get your facts written down and stick to your guns!

And then I got home and didn't do very much. Although Henna did an awful lot of testing my patience. She knew she wasn't allowed in the Veggie garden andstill she stared at me thru the glass doors watching me ... and then jumped over and began munching anyway. At which point I'd drop what I was doing and rush outside to rescue what I could ... and she'd happily jump back out as if she had no idea what I was bothered about. She's a real cutey :) We are going to have to seriously make a new plan for these veggies tho ... perhaps one of those wrought iron planting shelves or something ... ?

Up, Over & Away


Sweets said...

well at least you have your visa now! whoop whoop!!

your bunnies are so funny... that wooden hedge is just too easy, who could blame them, lekker munchies on the other side mama!!

Tamara said...

Ahem... you left out the 'p' when you wrote passport. So it reads that your 'assport' is back in your hands. Juvenile as I am, that amused me. Not expecting you to publish this comment.

Tamara said...

Your little bun is just too cheeky, but she's also too cute to get annoyed with! Tsssk... pets.

phillygirl said...

@sweets - yep, 1 down, 1 to go :) The wooden barricade has worked fine up until recently ... now that they're bigger and are learning about their jumping abilities ;) Will have to make a new plan!

@tamara - oops. have corrected it - thanks! Definitely too cute to get annoyed :) The veggies are after all being grown specially for her ... and she seems to know it!

The Jackson Files said...

Goodness me, this visa sdmin is never ending. And expensive.

Your bunnies are so cute, I wish I could bunny-sit them, but I don't think they'd like my cats and dog.

AngelConradie said...

ooh i am SO glad your visa is sorted out.
those bunnies are just the cutest!

phillygirl said...

@tjf - thanks for the offer but no, I think that suddenly finding themselves with a dog & cat might be a little too traumatic! Does that mean your cat came home? /* finger's crossed */

@angel - yup they are :)

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