WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA -- What can I say? VisaHQ.com a company in the Washington DC area received an application for an expedited passport on Sept.1,2010, we paid for an expedited service (yes we know it was a Labor Day weekend), and had a company letter asking for the passport to be a 1 to 2 day turnaround! Instead of keeping us informed about the progress made on our passport application we were told there was an additional delay and that our application would not go to the State Department until Tuesday or even Wednesday at the latest!
We were also harassed by the operators at VisaHQ who blamed us for the delay both on the phone and by E-mail. We were told our passport fee was less than the amount needed by the State Department! This was our first clue that something was amiss. We went to the local main post office for our application to be turned in and the postmaster accepted our check for $170.00 he then charged us $25.00 for the swearing in that the information was true and accurate, he packaged up our application, company letter, passport form, pictures and we then took it to a FED EX location for a overnight express delivery ($32.00).
We finally got confirmation that our passport was issued yesterday after 4:00 EDT. Hooray! Finally! (8 days after receiving it, and paying 224.00 for their "service"). So, while we were expecting our passport to be delivered today by FedEx at our home address in Washington state, which we paid for, the VisaHQ person sent it to our company home office in PA!? We clearly are upset as this has cost us time, money and stress, we feel it would only be right and a show of good will on VisaHQ part to refund our expedited payment. While VisaHQ blames us and questions us and our ability to give the correct information on the FedEx form.
As the marketing director at VisaHQ.com I wish to add details that the have been omitted that certainly lend some perspective to this "complaint."
Having placed their online order on September 1st, the applicant failed to ship their required documentation to us within the stated time frame. This delay pushed the process into the Labor day holiday weekend period. It is is also accurate that they did not initially send full payment. Therefore, in the process we have two client caused errors adding to the problems with this application.
Nonetheless, VisaHQ did everything we could to assist and did ultimately secure the travel documents, pushing through the request during the busy holiday period. At no time was the client "harassed" by any member of our staff. I would ask the poster of this review to carefully reflect on their choice of words and recall the details of their interaction with VisaHQ staff.
During the entire process VisaHQ received a large volume of phone calls from the client insisting that we tell them their passport number ahead of its release by the US Department of State. VisaHQ had no power, or the ability to do this (that information is privy only to the passport office until your new passport is shipped). The client then clearly expressed their annoyance, though we were faultless.
On the matter of shipping, the client selected the shipping address; entering the work address, we simply shipped the passport to the address as instructed. Shipping a rush passport to a work address is by no means an unusual request. We presumed that the address had been selected with care.
As the marketing director for VisaHQ, I find it a shame that given the circumstances of this case that anyone has elected to blame us and accuse our company of any wrongdoing. We did everything we could to help push through this application over the busy Labor Day holiday.
I paid dearly for an expedited Visa application the Visa HQ.com. It took a full two weeks to receive my Visa, when I only had ten days to receive the Visa before my flight left. That was the purpose for paying the expedited service fees. I did receive the Visa, but I had to rebook the flight, which cost me over $300 in addition to the original flight ticket cost. Beyond these problems, they used FedEx to ship my Visa and application to them and to return it to me. FedEx has not received payment from Visa HQ.com, so they are asking me for payment of the shipping costs, both ways.
When I complained, the individual blamed FedEx for the slow shipping, stating that was the cause of the two week time frame. Additionally when I called back after FedEx began billing me, VisaHQ refunded $15. In addition to the shipping charges billed by FedEx, I'm being an additional special handling fee because VisaHQ provided me with a shipping number that didn't exist. That proves premeditation in my opinion. I'm disgusted that a company like this can continue to operate and rip people off.