A mum and daughter going to South Africa for Christmas finished up grounded after an obscure travel requirement prevented them from flying.
Odette Baxter-Booth and her daughter Maisy Bennett, 17, were because of jet off for a dream visit to sunlight and spend the festive holiday with Odette’s fiancé Jason Dreyer and his family.
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After seeking to the trip forward, travelling and packing to the airport, the pair were left stumped when Maisy cannot continue her journey, Cornwall Live reports .
At Heathrow Airport , the teenager was told that – even though she was travelling with her mum – she couldn’t board the flight with out a signed letter of permission from her father.
“We couldn’t believe it – Maisy was crying her eyes out in the airport,” Odette said, an ongoing business development manager.
“We checked her bags in and she started going right through security when she called out, ‘Mum! Come here!’
“Then they told us she needed an affidavit signed by her dad which stated he was okay with her travelling.”
(Image: Odette Baxter-Booth/Facebook)
Since 2015 South African regulations have stated that young children beneath the age of 18 – both local and foreigners – must travel with a valid passport and a complete birth certificate stating both parents’ names.
If the kid is travelling or with only 1 parent alone, then your child must carry an affidavit done by the missing guardian also.
The trouble was Maisy’s dad and Odette’s former partner Steve Bennett was back in the home in Cornwall.
He decided to sign the relevant form and obtain it witnessed by way of a solicitor and emailed to Air France, with whom mother and daughter were flying.
But a telephone call south African Embassy revealed email copies weren’t acceptable – it needed to be the initial, signed paperwork.
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As a total result, the pair had to abandon their travel plans at the final minute.
“I’m a practiced traveller but had no basic idea relating to this – you’d think someone could have mentioned it whenever we booked Maisy’s flights,” adds Odette.
“Maisy last travelled to South Africa three . 5 years ago however they changed the regulations soon after that and we’d no idea.”
She also told Cornwall Live that Jason, who was simply driving to Port Elizabeth Airport to get Maisy and Odette, was devastated also.
“He really was upset and said he’d purchase new flights since it wasn’t concerning the money, but we’d paid more than £ already;1,000 and the logistics of organising it were very hard again, since it involved three flights and 40 hours of travel.
“I must say that the airline staff were brilliant though – they did everything they might and were consoling Maisy.”
The pair travelled to Manchester to remain with Odette&rsquo instead;s brother and so are thinking about booking a last-minute Christmas break to other sunnier climes.