Mistake costs Gogglebox star his holiday
SYMON Lovett, who appeared on Gogglebox Australia, has been left red-faced and confused after a 2017 holiday has, inadvertently, prevented him from travelling to the US.
The 32-year-old took to Instagram to plead with hotels and an airline he had booked with, hoping they'd provide him with a refund because of the US visa mishap.
Taking to Instagram, Mr Lovett explained how he went to Iran for a holiday in 2017. Because of that trip, he needed to apply for a different visa to gain entry into the US - a process that takes around three weeks - rather than applying through the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA). Unfortunately, he didn't know about this until after his flights and accommodation had been booked.
It's an easy mistake that can catch tourists out, and one that should play as a warning to others travelling abroad.
The US changed the guidelines for its Visa Waiver Program in 2015, which means visitors who have travelled to Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia or Yemen are required by law to obtain a visa under the Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act.
But having booked his flight, which is set to depart within a week, Mr Lovett pushed for an emergency meeting with the American Embassy to correct his visa. However, a meeting didn't fall in his favour and, instead, can only happen five days after his scheduled flight with Virgin Australia.
After exhausting all options, it appears Mr Lovett is now hoping to get a refund from the airlines and hotels he booked with. While he's had some success, other requests have been harder to fulfil because of the tight turnaround.