This is the South African visitor's visa. I should get a better photo of it scanned.
For about 3 consecutive years, I visited South Africa and only stopped in Johannesburg, however my luck changed when my boyfriend of 3 years Don, decided we needed some quality time and booked a 10 days trip to Cape Town in 2002. We began preparing for our trip three weeks ahead. Since I worked for a travel agency, I booked our trip through my company and had Don take care of the visa processing with the embassy. Being a diplomat and all, getting our visas was a breeze once the embassy had the tickets, hotel reservation and the bank statements needed to prove we were returning back to the country of origination.
It never ceases to amaze me the requirements for visas in my country (well foreign embassies in my country especially). By the time we were going on this trip, I had gone through two passports already with three South African visas, 4 United Kingdom Visas, 7 German Schengen visas, 2 American two year multiple entry visas, 3 Italian Schengen visas, 1 Swiss Visa, 6 multi entry visas to the Emirates and many other African countries entry and exit visas. The South African embassy required that I furnish proof of employment, proof of funds to a tune of at least 5,000,000 (5 million shillings), return air ticket to Cape Town, fully paid accommodation for the duration of my stay, the name and contact of the company that would take us on tour and a completed application form with two passport size photographs and a non refundable visa application fee of 65,000 sillings ($35).
10 days permit
Well I did not do all that (thank God I had a diplomat for a boyfriend), I provided my return air ticket, a completed application form and accommodation details, Don took my passport and put it in an envelope with his American passport, gave it to his driver and asked him to deliver it to the South African High Commission for processing (don't you just love it when people around you have such influence?). I must say I loved it this time because I honestly did not have five million Ugandan shillings sitting there in my account waiting for a visa application. Anyhow, 2 days from the date of submission, Don came home with our passport with the visas in them, they allowed for a temporary stay/ visiting permit for one month from April 12 - May 12,2002.
Coffee and sandwiches at Johannesburg International Airport
We were flying South African Airlines to Cape Town with an hour stop in Johannesburg to change planes.
Don arranged for one of their office drivers to take us to the airport the afternoon of the departure. Check in was quick through the diplomatic channels and soon we were aboard the South African flight bound for Johannesburg. Service on board was great, Don read a book and I pretended to be interested in the in-flight Magazine, but all the while imaginning our time together in Cape Town, this was the first time we were travelling together and for an exteneded period of time outside of the country. He was just as excited but his demeanor did not show it, he always had a way with expressing his excitement that hid from the true feeling inside, but I knew him better, the charming, stealing smiles he gave were indicative of his excitement. We landed successfully in Johannesburg, picked up our bags and waited for the flight to Cape Town.
While at the airport in Johannesburg, we took time to have coffee and sandwiches at one of the airport coffee shops, I can't recall which one it was. The one hour went by swiftly and soon we were being called to board our flight to Cape Town: in Cape Town, we picked up our 10 day car rental from the rental company. Don and I had booked the car rental online three weeks earlier and chosen a nice green compact car with great gas mileage (not that the gas was a problem then). Don would be the designated driver throughout the trip but once we picked the car, we both went "ooow!" it was smaller than it looked online, Don is 6'4 tall and has long legs, we looked at each other as if to agree, we need to take it back for another. But then a smile on Don's face indicated he had figured a way out: he opened the car, pushed the driver's seat as far back as possible and tried to get in as slowly as he can.
Don trying out our rental car to see if he can drive it for the next 10 days without event
The first try was a success and he was comfortbale enough to drive, I asked him probabl ten times from the airport to the hotel if he was comfortable and if he wanted us to change it for a bigger car, he smiled and went "honey, I'm fine and will you stop worrying? you will make my legs hurt just by thinkiing I'm uncomfortable". That was that and th erest of our trip was exciting as we got lost twice trying to find the directions to our on the beach accommodation far north of the city and the V & A (Victoria & Alexandria waterfront).
He made it into the car without event, lol!
It was such am amazing, memorable trip. We did 3 great tours: The first was the Cape Point tour which included a stop at the Ostrich Farm, Penguin colony, Cape of good hope, The point, and Table Mountain. The second tour was a boat trip to Robben Island with a day trip to Cape Agulus, and the third was the Wine Route Tour.
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