It’s like the tourism Gods were punishing me. Last Wednesday at pub trivia, I let my true feelings about my upcoming trip to New Zealand come out. See, New Zealand and I have a relationship that is based on convenience rather than passion; it’s never really been on my list of places to see, and believe me, there are very few countries that aren’t on that list. For some reason, my intrigue has just never been there.
Yet, this is my second trip to the land of the kiwi, and already it feels like a repeat of the first. Perhaps, I just don’t learn from my mistakes; perhaps the information I received last year wasn’t correct. Whatever it was, I was left shaking my head at the check-in counter as I frantically texted Pat to tell him that, yet again, I was having trouble getting to New Zealand.
If you weren’t a follower before, you can read about last year’s antics here. Basically, it was my fault as I for some reason thought I could enter New Zealand without any flight leaving the country. The goal was to buy my flight back as soon as I got my work and holiday visa as I wasn’t sure if they would require me to get another chest x-ray. But, Jetstar caught me and made me buy a ticket exiting New Zealand before I could get my boarding pass. This is when I went down to the service desk and bought a return ticket to Australia. Problem solved, sort of, since I actually had to change that flight since it took longer to process my visa than most other people.
This year, I was prepared! I simply bought a return ticket to Australia as I did before. However, there was a problem. My visa for Australia was expiring before the return date of my ticket, which means I didn’t have a ticket exiting New Zealand to a country I had permission to enter. Long story short, I had to purchase a ticket from New Zealand to America.
The problem here was two-fold. One, I should have double-checked the visa requirements like a good traveler. Two, the information I received the previous year was either incorrect (my visa expired before my return ticket then as well), or they had upgraded the requirement since then. Me dumb.
To make things worse, I hate cold weather, and I really hate snow. I’ve never been skiing; I have no desire to ski (especially with my bad knee). What else is going on in New Zealand?! I was really hoping to redeem NZ in my mind after my previous trip, but with a start like that, it is going to take a lot of impressing to fix. First impressions are the hardest to shake.
This, my friends, is a clear example of a travel fail.