Nothing new on no-visa front
I WAS surprised to see the article “UK cuts SA travellers some slack on visas” (The Star, November 12).
This has definitely applied at least for the past four years.
I have travelled to Toronto in Canada every year during this period and have not once needed a visa, even to leave the airport to use day rooms at hotels in Bath Road, which is near Heathrow, the Arora, Sheridan and others.
All I did at immigration was show my boarding pass for the onward flight to Canada. The same applied on my return trips. Once, the immigration officer raised the question of a visa and I showed him a copy of Home Office regulations, which state very clearly that if you are from South Africa and have an onward flight to North America, you can stay in the UK for up to 24 hours without requiring a visa of any sort.
On another occasion a supervisor was passing and remarked: “Oh, I see you have another one of those South Africans.”
Goodness knows why the British High Commission officials think this is something new.