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Etihad Airwaysdenied boarding based on claim that I need a transit visa for seychelles, shoddy investigation work

1
S Jan 28, 2020 Review updated:

Etihad Airways [RQID:759584]; Reference 759584; XBGVES

On 29 December 2019 we were stranded in Istanbul International Airport...for 2 days! What was supposed to be romantic getaway is now a nightmare thanks to you. I was supposed to go to the Seychelles via Abu Dhabi from Istanbul but was denied boarding. After denying us, they simply abandon us as if we are not paying customers and now I have to borrow money so I can go home. Since when does a South African require a visa to enter Seychelles!?! I have never been so humiliated and stressed out to this extent by an airline. What's even worse is that I sent multiple emails about my plight and no Etihad personnel has responded. Clearly going hungry and being stranded does not qualify as an emergency to Etihad. Etihad responded to me (eventually) and said they would investigate the matter. On 24 January 2019, they reply to me stating that it is basically my fault insisting that we should have applied for a transit Visa for Seychelles. This is annoying as they based this only on their system called TIMATIC. I have contacted the Seychelles embassy personally and they insisted that there is no visa required for South Africans staying in Seychelles for less that 30 days. I also know this to be true as I have traveled to Seychelles VISA-free in the past. I incurred a lot of additional expenses that I am still reeling from as a result of the blunder caused in Istanbul by your staff. The embassy recommended that i seek legal recourse as per their email./

  • Etihad Airways Customer Care's Response · Jan 31, 2020

    Hi Sabelo, please write to your case officer, so that they can address your concerns further. Thank you. *Ari

Responses

  • If Etihad said that Timatic gave those information, the person from Etihad was wrong. According to TIMATIC it says:

    Seychelles - Destination Visa

    Visa required.

    Visa issuance:

    Passengers can obtain a "Visitor's Permit" on arrival for a maximum stay of 3 months. They must have:
    - a return/onward ticket; and
    - sufficient funds (minimum of USD 150.- or equivalent per day); and
    - proof of accommodation for the duration of stay.
    Extension of stay possible for additional 3 months with a maximum stay of 12 months.

    Additional information:
    Visitors wishing to stay longer than the permitted stay, should apply for an extension at least one week to its expiry. Visitor's permits are not extendable beyond 12 months.

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