Stupid forms

Ah, the divine VAF1B.
I’ve spent my entire morning filling in three of them to apply for UK visas for my wife, my son and my daughter. Ten pages per application, with crippling repetition, bizarrely detailed requests for bizarre details and stupid questions galore.

For example:

In times of either peace or war have you ever been involved in, or suspected of involvement in, war crimes, crimes against humanity or genocide?

Seriously now, who – when applying for permission to enter the UK – is going to answer “Yes” to that one (and then provide full relevant detail in section 9)?
Certainly not my 10-month old daughter. And how can you commit war crimes in times of peace, anyway?

There was a worried look on the face of little Alex as I asked him question 6.14 though:

Have you engaged in any other activities that might indicate that you may not be considered a person of good character?

Especially after he had snatched the cuddly singing snake off his sister earlier in the day. I thought I’d better inform the UK Border Agency of that little incident, since they seem to want to know absolutely bloody everything:

When did you last visit the toilet and was it for number ones or number twos? (If number twos, please fully describe consistency of motion in section 9).

But despite even the most made-up of questions and the infinite detail to be provided, South Africa’s Department of Home Affairs still holds the record for the stupidest form ever. Their BI-24 allows you to register your child’s birth, but in the answer space for “Country of Birth”, fails to provide enough spaces for you to write “South Africa”.

I hope heads rolled. Seriously.

  • Lol very funny. Good thing it’s not the USA. You would have to answer those for your neanderthal predecessors as well.

  • Wouldn’t Brit passports for your sprogs make life a little easier? That way they wouldn’t have to answer those difficult questions each time.

  • Emil > You’ve met my dad, then?

    Rob > Hmm. See the link on the first line. (“UK Visa”)

  • LMFAO! That last bit about the BI-24 form had me rolling around on the couch for quite a while! Excellent!! Only in SA, I think one could quite easily say! 😀 Good luck with the visas… and rumour has it we’re in for some glorious weather up here this summer! 🙂

    Helga Hansen´s last blog post was: Time to be critical! (Note: 6000 miles… is not responsible for the content of external internet sites)

  • Where bouts in the UK you gonna be then?

    Wiggy´s last blog post was: Congratulations (Note: 6000 miles… is not responsible for the content of external internet sites)

  • Nice, the questions remind me of the US visa questions (and greencard, and citizenship..etc…etc..)

    “have you ever been involved with the Nazi party”…good question for a 29 year old in 2009

    Alex´s last blog post was: Magic vs Cavs – Game 6 (2009) (Note: 6000 miles… is not responsible for the content of external internet sites)

  • HH > It was two boxes short, I swear. (You can’t get a BI-24 online or I’d prove it). I could seriously not believe it.

    Wiggy > Mainly Nottinghamshire. (Not really)
    For our visit to the UK, we’re only actually spending 3 days in the UK. Strange, but true.

    Alex > I had to tell them that my 10-month old baby girl (see previous photos ad nauseum) had never “glorified terrorism”.

  • Reflex

    At least you don’t have to pay for the visa applications.

  • Reflex > No. Only for the actual visa – about R1,000 each.
    Not annoyed though. Really. REALLY.

  • Reflex

    I still reckon if you get an EEA family member permit, you shouldn’t have to pay for the visitor Visa seeing as you are a UK citizen (which is a member of the EEA).

    If you check the fees out http://www.vfs-uk-za.com/visafees.aspx , right at the bottom under category: others it states that EEA family members should be free.

  • Reflex > Not eligible for that visa – I have checked. They have to have FAMILY VISITOR visa at R888 each.

  • Right, followed link and now fully understand that Brit Consulate in Pta are pants at paper work, much like them in Brit Consulate in Washington – I just had to deal with them for a new Passport. Oh and don’t get me started on SA Home Affairs, bunch of winkers – 9 months in and I’m still waiting for a Full Birth certificate! Grrrr. Sympathies.

  • Rob > Been there, done that with both of them. Had some good service from SA Home Affairs as well though. But the British Consulate are tossers. (IMHO)

  • British Consulate in DC were awesome for me – took 3 days to get me my new passport, with delivery took about a week