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Flight Centre VISA rip off.

Brisbane, Australia
1 post
1 review
Flight Centre VISA rip off.

Be careful approaching Flight Centre to assist you in obtaining VISA's, they are thieves.

In my case I was quoted $160 for literally 8 minutes work (yes, I timed it...a little less than 8 minutes actually when I did it myself).

Flight Centre staff by default are forced to recommend a company called VISALINK CIBT. That's $20 per minute. That's just to get your VISA...you pay extra for the actual VISA. Plus delivery ( at a rate far more than post or courier).

If you need a VISA, DO NOT DO IT VIA FLIGHT CENTRE OR CIBT VISALINK (they prey on uneducated travellers), go directly to the Australian Government Smart traveller website...all links and instructions are there and it's dead easy.

On average VISA's are not required in most instances or they're free or they cost ROUND $50 AT MOST.

United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9,955 posts
121 reviews
1. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I'm unsure why anyone would think of obtaining visas from a company called Flightlink.

Claude - your advice applies to buying/booking anything.

Do your research before you part with your money.

Dubai, United Arab...
Level Contributor
10,951 posts
26 reviews
2. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

<<approaching Flight Centre to assist you in obtaining VISA's, they are thieves.>>

NO, they are not; it is called business.

Agree you can do this yourself. And the same applies to buying tickets, meet and great in airports, (VIP) valet parking, etc.

Service is seldom charged at cost but rather at perceived benefits.

But even when it comes to goods, some of them are more expensive in duty free shops than in the respective city, guess why?

And to add an example of paying the stupid tax myself. I once forgot to pack my computer charger. Found one at the airport and paid about 5 times the price from a normal shop. Issue was, I was flying to a place where I knew I would likely not get one at all. Guess why they charged the crazy amount and why I was even ready to paid it.

Level Contributor
6,261 posts
21 reviews
3. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

"Be careful approaching Flight Centre to assist you in obtaining VISA's, they are thieves"

It's called a lazy tax, and you were been lazy by getting them to apply for your visa, so hense deserved to pay it.

newcastle upon tyne
Level Contributor
13,474 posts
169 reviews
4. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I apply for any visas I need myself

I don't want to pay somebody to do something that is generally pretty simple to do

Liverpool, UK
Level Contributor
22,969 posts
36 reviews
5. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

Not sure why you consider them thieves who take something without your permission - you freely elected to use them.

If Firm A offers to do a job for £100 but Firm B charges £200 would it be right to call Firm B thieves.

Level Contributor
1,051 posts
61 reviews
6. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I completely agree . They are taking advantage of inexperienced travellers . Novices can feel overwhelmed in organising visas and can be easily exploited by companies charging exorbitant fees for simple services when a little advice is all that is needed. I came across similar schemes for esta applications for visiting the US which were actually more complicated than doing it yourself. Well done for advising others against these useless and preditory businesses.

Level Contributor
447 posts
25 reviews
7. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I have travelled to Australia many times from the UK , most of these flights were with Emirates and until this year (flying with Singapore on one occasion and Qatar on the other) my Australian ETA was arranged by Emirates for no extra charge. This year I have made my own arrangements online direct with the Australian Immigration website. Similarly with my US Esta direct . I would never contemplate using an intermediary and paying a fee for this service as both are very easy to do myself.

Level Contributor
6,261 posts
21 reviews
8. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

"They are taking advantage of inexperienced travellers"

Still does not make them theives thou. Do you expect them to work for free? No, So of course they are going to charge a fee to do the work for you. I'm sure you don't work for free in your occupation, so why should flight centre?

Edited: 22 October 2017, 10:02
Level Contributor
11,994 posts
17 reviews
9. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I get all my visas for personal travel by directly applying on the official governent's site. For business travel I have to use CIBT. My employer believes it's worth the fee to ensure applications are checked for accuracy and to get them expedited.

It's not thievery to charge for providing a service. It's optional, no one forces anyone to use them.

Edited: 22 October 2017, 10:23
Nashville, TN
Level Contributor
6,946 posts
10 reviews
10. Re: Flight Centre VISA rip off.

I used to work for a 3rd party OTA and like Flight Centre, if someone asked about a Visa, we recommended one specific company. However, the key word is recommend. Nothing says you have to use the company that is recommended. A little research could and would have found you numerous alternatives.