Embassy replies to Visa complaints

The Australian High Commission ensured that all visa applications requesting travel for the Sydney 7’s received before the end of December 2015, were assessed in time for travel to the event

A spokesperson from the High Commission said visas were granted to those who met the criteria.

These were their response to members of the public that raised concerns on the lengthy processing time of their visa.

Some members of the public said the delay in process led to them missing out in watching the Sydney 7s which was staged on February 5 and 6.

The High Commission said November has always been the beginning of their peak months.

“November to January is peak season for tourism to Australia with a very high volume of visa applications received during these months by the Visa office at the Australian High Commission. Advertisements were run in The Fiji Times in October 2015 encouraging applicants to lodge early for travel during the peak season to avoid disappointment,” the spokesperson said.

The high commission stated that their processing time was in line with the global service standard which “is that seventy-five per cent of visitor visa applications are granted within 30 days of lodgement. However, processing times will extend beyond this timeframe if additional documents or further checks are required.”

The spokesperson has also advised that in future “When it comes to popular events or periods of peak demand over the summer holidays, we ask that visa applicants lodge their documentation at least two months in advance of their need to travel.”

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