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7.00 am and the Veteran and Mrs Veteran rocked up to the Air NZ check-in counter at Auckland Airport for our flight to Samoa.   Actually Mrs Veteran rocked up alone; I said for her to go ahead and check-in while I drove the car to the long-term car-park.    15 minutes later I returned to find a very despondent Mrs V … “what’s up” I said … “We’re not going anywhere” she said … “our passports have been rejected because they’re due to expire within six months of our visit”.

Our (my) fault.   I had booked on line and it had never occurred to me that a current passport due to expire four months after our visit would not be acceptable.

So I approached an Air NZ agent and explained the problem.    His initial response was ‘Yes, we do have a problem …. what you need is a special waiver dispensation from the Samoan High Commission in Wellington”.    Actually the word we gave me some small encouragement.   “So, what are ‘we’ to do” … I said.     The Air NZ human said “Give me your passports, stay where you are and I’ll talk to my supervisor”.

Saw him talk to another gentleman who then pulled out his cell phone.   Transpired he had the private number of a contact in the SHC.    He woke him up (7.00 am on a Saturday morning) and proceeded to get us the necessary waiver.     Back came the Air NZ check-in agent with a big smile on his face and handed us back our passports along with our boarding passes and said “All sorted, off you go, have a great holiday and I’ll look after your bags”.

We travel the world a bit.   I can’t think of any other jurisdiction where this would have happened … the meme would have been ‘your problem not ours, OTY to sort’.

Air New Zealand is riding tops in my estimation right new.  


Written by The Veteran

March 26, 2019 at 2:15 am

Posted in New Zealand

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