Sunday, May 06, 2007

Argentinian bureaucracy

After my stint in Rio, I want to head down to Argentina. Since I need a visa I looked up the Argentinian embasys and, thankfully, they have a consulate in Rio. Went across to the consulate armed with various documents (some legal and original, some not).

It's an imposing building and part of the Argentinian cultural centre as well. It's got a nice view of the bay and is in a busy commercial area. Got a bit lost walking around the building and finally found the visa section after about 20 minutes. It was empty and there were 4 visa officers just chatting with each other. When they saw me, they pointed me over to the youngest one.

Showed him my passport and when I asked for a visa form, he gave me a list of required documents. Most of them were standard requirements - valid Brazillian visa, bank statement, flight ticket, hotel reservation, valid visa for the next country (Still not too sure where I'm headed after Argentina). Surprisingly, he didn't have a problem with my residency and showed me a line which said this:

For Non-Brazillian residents, an application for a visa must be accompanied by a letter from your embassy or consulate, stating your name and passport number.

I asked him if that letter needed anything else, but he said no. Just a letter with your name and passport number. I showed him my passport and said both were on the front page. He just shook his head, and refused to give me the application form till I get that letter.

It's so stupid. A letter from your consulate stating your name and passport number. The Indian consulate is in Sao Paolo, so the visa officer agreed that a fax will suffice. Let's see what problems the Indian consulate will have with sending a fax like that.


Tabula Rasa said...

hah! i bet they did it because they knew some of your documents were "not original" :-D

bandafbab said...

Maybe word has gotten around in the various consulates. Anyway, I called the Indian consulate and they said the fastest way to do it is to go to the consulate in person.

Tabula Rasa said...

yup. consuls read blogs too. horror.

bandafbab said...

I also have to apply for a French visa in a couple of weeks. Let's see how these 2 visas go. If they give them without a problem, I'll write something nice about them.

Tabula Rasa said...

try not to use the words "cheese", "surrender", and "materazzi".