Paperwork. No one really wants to do paperwork, do they? As I said in my last post, I am a big fan of organising things ..or events …or holidays or…let's be honest…people However, I really do not enjoy doing paperwork…especially visas.
3. Visas: designed to fry your brain?
Unfortunately, for me, being granted entry to a multitude of foreign countries means there are a lot of visas to be looking at. I honestly think applications are worded in a way that attempts to break your spirit and make you give up: a sneaky way to reduce the amount of people traipsing through the country in question. It's a conspiracy I tells ya!!
I have a tendency to get wound up or panicky and yesterday, when faced with visa restrictions and all the different variations of who can do what and where, I managed to get myself into a spiral of panic. I became completely blind to anything; almost too worked up to even read the embassy websites properly. Luckily for me, I have a boyfriend who, even when he's miles away on a vessel in the Atlantic, can calm me down and stop me from panicking. Alex pointed out that, even if I had to hop out of a country to do a visa run, or my visa ran out before he came back from his shift offshore, what was the worst that could happen? I raised the valid point of “lots of crying” but then realised he was right: in that situation, even I would pull myself together and get it sorted. And that is just one of the reasons I love Alex.
Have you ever had to pay someone ridonkulous amounts of money to have them to jab you with sharp needles infected with serious diseases? Well, I will have to. In order to be vaccinated for our travels, I will need to get the following:
- Hep B (x3 jabs)
- Rabies (x3 jabs)
- Japanese encephalitis (x2 jabs)
When I went to the London Travel Clinic (http://www.londontravelclinic.co.uk/), the lovely nurse there broke the news that, if I were to get all those jabs at their clinic, it'd cost me an eye-watering £525!! She then gave me the invaluable advice of speaking to my GP, as some practices offer the Typhoid and Tetanus/Diphtheria/Polio vaccinations free of charge. Luckily mine does, which cuts £80 off that £525. My GP also said they do the course of 3 Hep B jabs for £60 in total (compared to the £40 per dose the London Travel Clinic charged).
I then started looking at other vaccination options and found that Trailfinders (http://www.trailfinders.com/services.nsf/travelclinic?ReadForm) offer Japanese Encephalitis for £79 per dose (London Travel Clinic charge £85 per dose…it's not much of a difference but every little helps) and the South London Travel Centre (http://www.southlondontravelcentre.com/) offer the rabies jabs at £24 per dose (LTC charge £65 per dose)
In total, from shopping around, I've reduced my vaccination costs to £290 🙂 and I feel pretty darn smug about that!