What is a Carnet?

Definition

A Carnet (pronounced kar-nay) is an international customs document that is commonly referred to as a ‘Merchandise Passport‘ or a passport for goods. It is used to clear customs in 85 countries without paying duty and import tax on goods that will be re-exported within 12 months.

Simply put: it is a single document to be used for clearing goods through Customs. Without a Carnet you would have to go through each country’s customs procedures.

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Types of Carnet

Currently, in the UK, there are two types of Carnet that you can access:

1. The most widely used are the ATA Carnets. These allow the temporary importation of commercial samples, professional equipment or goods going to either a trade fair or exhibition to countries that are part of the ATA Carnet system.

2. The second type of Carnet is an EC/CPD/China-Taiwan carnet (between the U.K. and Taiwan) or a TECRO/AIT Carnet (between the U.S. and Taiwan) . A Taiwan carnet is issued in addition to an ATA Carnet if you are travelling to multiple countries including Taiwan.

See what goods a Carnet can cover here.

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How can you obtain a Carnet?

The Travel Visa Company, a U.K. leader in travel visas, and boomerang carnets, ATA Carnet specialists, are delivering both services from The Travel Visa offices in Crewe.

This collaboration makes it easy for you to prepare for international travel by offering two specialities in international travel and trade documentation.

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ATA Carnets and their accompanying security can be applied for, signed and stamped electronically from anywhere in the U.K. using boomerang carnets online application. ATA Carnet pick-up locations are available in Liverpool and London, in addition to Travel Visa’s Crewe office where travel visas are also available

A Travel Visa, boomerang carnets and Liverpool Chamber of Commerce collaboration makes so much sense. The Travel Visa Company is the preferred visa supplier for the Liverpool Chamber and boomerang carnets is their exclusive service provider for ATA Carnets.  All three international trade and travel document organizations bring experience and expertise to, sometimes, complex and frustrating processes.

To apply for your Carnet, or to simply find out more information, call 01270 250 590.

Need any more information? Visit the boomerang website for everything you might need to know! www.boomerangcarnets.co.uk

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Worldwide love for Doughnuts!

If you don’t like sweet treats, incredible desserts or down right deliciousness… then this blog post probably isn’t for you!

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Here, at The Travel Visa Company, there are many things we are passionate about, like: worldwide travel,  top notch customer service and our visa procurement services; but, there is one thing we all love; no matter what day of the week it is, and that’s FOOD!

After countless high profile meetings, intense and rigorous training sessions and hours of research and testing we have come to the conclusion that: Doughnuts really are our favourite sweet treat!

Just think about this: Doughnuts come in all manner of shapes, colours and sizes. Some are sweet and some may be sour. Some thick, some thin. Some big, some small. But are they really any different from you and I? Well, yes. Of course they are. They are doughnuts.

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So, let’s get down to the serious business. Which doughnut is best? Commonly, doughnuts can be either in ring shapes, sometimes with toppings; or, a complete doughnut bursting with all sorts of yummy fillings.

Three most popular brands of doughnut makers are Krispy Kreme, Dunkin Donuts and Voodoo Doughnuts. These brands offer distinctive and delightful flavours, such as: cookie dough, lemon meringue, apple pie, chocolate eclair, frosted maple kreme and so many more!

However, you may not know that there are, in fact, other variations of doughnut from every corner of the globe. These include (most popularly): the Dutchie and the Cronut. The Dutchie being a square doughnut, glazed and with raisins cooked into the dough itself. The Cronut, on the other hand, is a cross between a doughnut and a croissant.

In fact, most nations have their own variations of doughnut. Here are a select few:

  1. China – The ‘Youtiao’ is a long golden-brown deep-fried strip of dough.
  2. India – The ‘Vada’ can be made from a range of ingredients including potato!
  3. Kenya – The ‘Mandazi’ is a form of fried bread that originated on the Swahili Coast.
  4. Russia – The ‘Pączki’ is a pastry that came from Polish heritage.
  5. Turkey – The ‘Tulumba’ is a fried batter soaked in syrup, similar to churros.
  6. Germany – very similar to a traditional doughnut, without the hole in the centre.

If you are wanting to combine your love of food and travel by tracking down these delicacies, we can assist you with all your travel visa needs. Call our award-winning team on 01270 250 590 or visit www.thetravelvisacompany.co.uk

Before ending this flavourful blog, we have one burning question to ask…

How do you to spell it?

A. Doughnut

B. Donut

Let us know on Twitter or in the comments below!

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What is the Visa Waiver Program?

If you have travelled to or from America, then you may have heard of the Visa Waiver Program. But what actually is it, and what does it do?

The Visa Waiver Program

The Visa Waiver Program allows visa-free travel to America for up to 90 days.

Visitors must obtain an Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (ESTA) prior to travel which is valid for two years from the date of issue and allows multiple entries in to the U.S. for business, leisure and transiting purposes.

This visa-free travel scheme only applies to nationals of following participating countries:

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How do I apply for an ESTA?

All British Passport holders travelling to America will require to obtain an ESTA before travel. In order to be eligible you must hold a passport with an integrated chip. You can apply online through the official American Government’s website or, if you would like further assistance with your application or have any questions, contact The Travel Visa Company on 01270 250 590.

Happy Travels!

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Easter 2016

Opening Hours

If you are planning to make a visa application during this holiday period we are here to help! Our staff can be contacted on 01270 250 590 – see our opening times below:

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Easter

Easter celebrations begin with Good Friday (the day that Jesus Christ was crucified). Traditionally, this day involves the attendance of Mass in the afternoon and a day of fasting. Christians will have only one meal throughout the whole day, and this will usually be a fish dish as meat should not be eaten on Good Friday.

This is then followed by Easter Sunday which takes place on the last Sunday of March. This was the day Jesus was resurrected after his crucifixion. Most commonly, the day is celebrated with the giving and receiving of sweet treats and candies, for example: Chocolate Easter Eggs. As well as this, you will find people taking part in Easter egg hunts, Sunday church service and Easter Sunday roast dinners.

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Where to spend Easter?

As Easter brings with it two bank holidays, the perfect way to spend it would be an extra long, relaxing, weekend away! By this we mean, it would be best not travelling half way around the world and spending an entire day travelling… instead: A couple hours on a plane, car or ferry to arrive at your chosen destinations is exactly what the doctor ordered!

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Here are some Ideas for a much needed European getaway:

Tuscany, Italy

With a huge amount to keep you busy, breathtaking landscapes, incredible art & history and some of the best food & wine in the world, Tuscany should definitely be considered when travelling to Europe! A popular region in Italy, Tuscany has great deal of attractions suitable for everybody; from families and solo travellers, couples to adventurers you will never get bored!

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Spain

Go shopping, grab a coffee, treat yourself to a fancy meal out or just relax on the beach… Spain really has so much to offer! Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Valencia and many more historic cities. This is surely a bucket list essential for any traveller. With a flight seeing you there in around 2 to 3 hours, what is stopping you?

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Istanbul, Turkey

The only city in the world that encompasses both Asia and Europe

Istanbul will not disappoint. This is a place filled with different wonders including: the Basilica Cistern, the Aya Sofya, the Blue Mosque and the Grand Bazaar. Teeming with little shops and stalls, this is the perfect place to pick up some traditional Turkish memorabilia.

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Do I Need a Visa to travel

If you hold a UK passport; you can visit all 26 European countries in the Schengen agreement visa free!

For those of other nationalities, you can apply for a Schengne visa with The Travel Visa Company. Its as easy as 1… 2… 3!

  1. Apply for your Schengen visa.
  2. Receive your issued visa.
  3. Enjoy travel between all 26 EU countries with one visa!

Please Note: You must apply for the visa with the embassy of the destination you will first be entering.

We can assist with your travel visa needs for all nationalities and destinations worldwide:

Tourist Visas / Business Visas / Media Visas
European (Schengen) Visas
Study Visas / Work Permits

Other services we include are:

Passport Renewal Service
In-House Passport Photography and Resizing Service
UK Inbound Immigration Visas

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Canada ETA

Electronic Travel Authorisation

The Canadian Tourism Commission have announced final regulations for Canada’s new ETA program, requiring all British citizens to obtain an authorisation before flying to Canada.

From March 15th 2016 all British Citizens will be able to apply for an ETA when travelling to Canada.

British Citizen Passport Holders who fly to or transit through Canada can now apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). Once approved, your eTA is valid for five years or until your passport expires.

In addition to this, the Canadian authorities have stated that until the 29th September 2016, travellers who do not have an eTA can still board their flight, as long as they have appropriate travel documents (eg a valid passport) and obtain their visa on arrival.

This means that from the 30th of September 2016 onward, Those flying into Canada (or transiting through) will not be able to board their flight without an eTA.


What is an ETA?

ETA stands for ‘Electronic Travel Authorisation‘. This is an online method of obtaining your travel visa. The visa is applied electronically to the chip that is located in your passport. This then removes the need for stamps or labels being printed in your passport as well as completely getting removing the paper needed for the application.

How can I obtain an eTA?

The Travel Visa Company will be able to assist with all applications for this new Canadian ETA which will be valid for a period of 5 years from the date of issue. For further information, or to apply, please visit our website: thetravelvisacompany.co.uk/canada/ or call our award winning team on 01270 250 590.


What to do and where to go in Canada!

Canada has been named as one of the top 20 most beautiful countries in the world by RoughGuides. It is home to the CN Tower, Chateau Frontenac and most notably the Niagra Falls.

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Canada is filled with things to do and places to go. There really is something there for everyone! Canada is brilliant for national parks; with 40% of the land being covered by forests and has over 40 recognised national parks.

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It has bustling cities like Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal that are teeming with restaurants, cocktail bars, clubs, entertainment venues, arenas, lounges, theatres and much more!

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With a flight from London typically taking approximately 8 hours, what is stopping you? Apply for your eTA now!

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World Wildlife Day

About

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) decided to proclaim the 3rd of March as UN World Wildlife Day.

The day came about to celebrate and raise awareness of the world’s wild animals and plants.

World Wildlife Day will be celebrated in 2016 under the theme “The future of wildlife is in our hands.” African and Asian elephants will be a main focus of the Day under the theme “The future of elephants is in our hands”.

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Threats to wildlife

There is a constant threat to all wildlife whether that be from: pollution, poaching, trafficking, environmental changes, hunting or habitat destruction.

Poaching has become a massive problem for endangered species and we have recently seen the unfortunate and unnecessary extinction of the West African Black Rhino.

The world is dealing with an unprecedented spike in illegal wildlife trade, threatening to overturn decades of conservation gains.

Much like illegal drugs, animal parts such as tusks, horns and vital organs are trafficked internationally. A lot of the time, the reason behind poaching is because it is believed that certain body parts of animals are essential for creating “experimental” medicines. Trafficking of these animal parts usually occurs in the more valuable and rare species such as Leatherback Sea Turtles, Saolas, Leopards and Rhinos.

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While we are seeing positive progress to tackle illicit wildlife trafficking, more needs to be done by all of us. On this World Wildlife Day, we hope to see even more commitments coming from countries and citizens around the world.

Get involved

If you’re wondering how to get involved and help raise awareness this World Wildlife Day then here are a few ways:

  1. Voice your opinions on social media using the hashtags #WorldWildlifeDay #InOurHands and #WWD2016.
  2. Take a trip out to your local zoo, wildlife centre or national park.
  3. Get talking about world wildlife in schools, universities and places of work.
  4. Support local conservation projects.
  5. Produce your own promotional material for World Wildlife Day

For further information visit their website here.

“The Future of Wildlife is in our Hands”

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T20 Cricket World Cup

Venues

This year’s 2016 ICC World Twenty20 will be held in India from the 8th of March until the 3rd of April.

It will be hosted in 7 different Indian cities across the country: Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore, Kolkata, Nagpur, Mohali and Dharamshala; with the first match being played in Nagpur on the 8th of March and the final being played at the Eden Gardens of Kolkata.

Teams

For those of you follow cricket you probably already know how it works, but in short, 16 teams enter the competition. There are two rounds with two groups each consisting of four teams:

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Teams then battle through the groups to advance to the knock-out stages where they then progress to semi-finals and the finals.

Viewing

As it is not being broadcast on national television in the UK, you may be wondering how can you watch the World Cup. Australians can watch on Fox Sports, UK and New Zealanders can view the matches on Sky Sports  and Americans can watch on ESPN. In India, Start Sports will be showing all the games featured in this event or you could tune in to DD National who will only be broadcasting India’s games.

Alternatively you can stream live on www.starsports.com

India

Travelling to India? If you are travelling to India for business or tourist purposes, you will need a visa! To request an application pack and receive more information from our Visa Specialists, please contact us on 01270 250 590. Please note that the granting of any Indian Visa is dependant upon consular discretion and requires up to 15 working days in the embassy.

Visit our website to download an application pack: thetravelvisacompany.co.uk/india/

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Essential Travel Services

MASTA

MASTA (Medical Advisory Service for Travellers Abroad) offer travel health consultations, vaccinations (including yellow fever), anti-malarials and travel related retail items. Combined with clinics based in the NHS and Occupational Health establishments; they are growing faster than ever before, with well established partnerships with Independent Pharmacies, BUPA, STA Travel and Flight Centre amongst others.

Wondering how it works? All MASTA customers can expect to receive a full risk assessment consultation, followed by the provision of a personalised travel health brief and then receive the vaccinations or anti-malarials themselves. Their clinical team constantly monitor disease situations and outbreaks across the world, bringing together health information from many sources and providing it to their own Nurse Experts and NHS clinics and surgeries. The result is that their award winning MASTA Travel Health Brief is widely recognised as an invaluable tool both to medical professionals and members of the public alike.

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Want to find out more? Visit their website: www.masta-travel-health.com or call 0330 100 4200 and quote “TVC01

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Consularcare

Consularcare offers market leading solutions to bridge the gap between the public and private sector. Whether you are travelling abroad for business or for leisure, or you are responsible for corporate foreign travel in your organisation, they will assist you to be prepared for any eventuality and support should difficulties arise. Their solutions have been developed to educate, assist and advise, and staff are former diplomats so you can be confident that their expertise is second to none.


ConsularAssist – When you travel abroad, do you ever think about how you would deal with a crisis? What would you do if you were the victim of crime? Or arrested? If you lost your visa or passport? No traveller actually has any legal right to consular assistance, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office is not in a position to help everyone who requests assistance.

ConsularAssist steps in when others can’t, don’t or won’t; by helping you. Whatever the incident, wherever you are in the world, their team – led by former diplomats – will liaise with the consulate, police and all other relevant parties to resolve a crisis. Invaluable reassurance for corporate clients as well as those travelling for leisure purposes.


UK Inbound Immigration Visas – UK Visas and Immigration makes millions of decisions every year about who has the right to visit or stay in the country; the primary documentation used in making those decisions is the application form. Consularcare’s expert team can help you to avoid refusal because of an incorrectly completed form.

Consularecare’s team of experts understands the immigration procedure and provides the expertise to ensure that the submitted documentation is fully completed and correct. Consularcare maximises your chances of a successful application by working with you to deliver the information UK Visas and Immigration needs to process your application, accurately, quickly, and efficiently so you can start working, living and enjoying life in the UK.

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Want to find out more? Visit their website: www.consularcare.com or call 020 3198 1890 and quote “TVC01

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The Travel Visa Company

If you are resident  in the UK and are needing to apply for a visa for anywhere else in the world, The Travel Visa Company can take the stress out of your visa application. Obtaining a valid visa for travelling to a proposed destination is one of the most important areas of preparation for any traveller. Without the correct visa, entry will not be allowed into many countries. This process can be extremely time consuming and very complicated, as well as involving journeys to embassies that are located around the country.

The Travel Visa Company are a highly specialised and adaptable tourist and business travel visa service to organisations of all shapes and sizes. We advise and support our customers on ensuring that all immigration and border control requirements are met, in addition to also obtaining the
entry visa on behalf of the traveller. Our award-winning service expands to all nationalities and all destinations both via our Customer Service Centre and our bespoke online application system.

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Want to find out more? Visit our website: www.thetravelvisacompany.co.uk or call us on 01270 250 590

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Samsung’s SmartThings

Smart Homes

The tech genius’ over at Samsung have done it again with their most recent release! The revolutionary new technology: SmartThings. This is the latest step in advancing technology that gives consumers the ability to control normal household appliances from almost anywhere at any time with the touch of a button!

SmartThings let you monitor, control and secure your home from anywhere.

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But how does it work?

To begin with, you will have to purchase a SmartHub. This will be the most essential device required as it is needed for all other appliances to connect. You then have a range of different appliances that you can connect such as: motion sensors, power outlets, moisture sensors, speakers and more.

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Samsung specify that you can “add as you go” being able to add as many appliances as you like. On top of this, other known technology manufacturers will be able to create their own appliances that can be linked to SmartThings and so far big names such as Phillips and Bose have contributed.

To be able to make the most of this flashy new tech, you must first download the Samsung app ‘SmartThings’. The app gives you full control over appliances and power supply as well as providing you with useful information like room temperatures, room security, appliance power usage and much more!

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Future benefits

This type of technology can huge benefits especially for travellers and tourists. For example; say you were expecting a delivery while you are out of the country, you could simply log in to the app and schedule a time for the garage to be unlocked or even for the back gate to be opened. Maybe you were in a rush to get out the door so you weren’t late for your flight and forgot to switch the kettle or iron off, not to worry – simply open the app and turn the power off to those appliances!

Another major benefit with a technology of this kind is security. A big worry for holiday makers is theft and burglary of their homes while they are away, however with the introduction of SmartThings you will be able to monitor security from no matter where you are. Be it checking your doors and windows are locked or having a live camera feed you can view remotely.

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How can I get this?

You can simply go to the Samsung website and purchase the equipment there, however because there is so much demand for this there is limited stock and certain products – the starter kit will set you back £200.00 and includes the hub, motion sensor, multi sensor, presence sensor, power outlet.

Got anything else to add? Feel free to leave a comment below!

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#Make In India

What is it all about?

#MakeInIndia has been trending on twitter for the past week, however, it seems that some people don’t really understand what it is all about…

Make In India is an initiative created by the Government of India to encourage businesses to manufacture their products in India.

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This is a massive conference that is held in Mumbai. Here, businesses can exhibit, network and mingle in the hopes of making new and valuable contacts as well as gaining more information about the organisations they are interested in.

There was a wide array of popular and diverse businesses that were featured at the Make In India conference, most notable were: Jaguar Land Rover, Mercedes, Tata, Air India, Boeing, Coca-Cola, Pepsico, Pfizer and many more with rumours of there being 9,00 companies attending!

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Why was this created?

This was created as a response to a critical situation in 2013 when the emerging markets bubble had burst in September 2014 by the Indian Prime Minister, Modi.

It was put in place to transform India into a global design and manufacturing hub encouraging: foreign direct investment, new initiatives and national manufacturing. This would involve sectors such as travel and tourism, aviation, construction, space, pharmaceuticals and more!

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To start a movement, you need a strategy that inspires, empowers and enables in equal measure. Make in India needed a different kind of campaign: instead of the typical statistics-laden newspaper advertisements, this exercise required messaging that was informative, well-packaged and most importantly, credible.

What now?

Mumbai week as come to a close today and you’re probably wondering what happened that was worth knowing about. To begin with:

  • President Modi “promised” that India will have 100 million new jobs by 2022.
  • India’s GDP is to increase from 15% to 25% in 2022
  • 100 smart cities are to be developed to decongest the urban housing scenario
  • Vodafone India are to invest in new business initiatives such as a ‘tier-4’ data centre at Airoli
  • Jaguar showcased their XE and XJ models
  • The VW Ameo is also showcased
  • Danish firm universal robots aims to double sales
  • 2016 Hyundie i20 was unveiled
  • India consider proposals to manufacture F-16 fighter jet
  • A new “single table”concept has been brought in to place when considering new proposals

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To find out more, visit their website: www.makeinindia.com but also be sure to check their hashtag on Twitter #MakeInIndia

“From profit to progress, friendship to partnership calling the world to #MakeInIndia”

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#BTS2016

Previous years

Following last years success we are looking forward to exhibiting at this years Business Travel Show!

2015 was the first year we were in attendance at The Business Travel Show and its safe to say it was a brilliant experience for everyone involved.

You can read more about last years show here

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About the BTShow

The Business Travel Show, held annually in London for more than 20 years, is Europe’s largest specialised exhibition and conference.

The event sees travel professionals from all over the country attending with this year having an estimated 7,424 attendees!

This is a place for networking. Mingling with other exhibitors and visitors, gaining valuable contacts and seeing what’s new and exciting in the travel industry is just a taste of what it has to offer!

If you’d like to come along you can download a ticket here (oh and its completely free!)


Our stand

The Business Travel Show will be open to visitors for two days: Wednesday the 24th to Thursday the 25th of February and will be held at the Olympia Grand Conference Centre in London.

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We will be located in stand B604

 

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This is a 3D mock-up of how our stand will look.

 


MPI Brokers

This year we will be sharing our stand with MPI Brokers:Print

We provide insurance for the Travel and Ski industry – businesses, staff and customers. Find out how you can benefit from our renowned personal service, extensive experience and quality insurance products providing a wide scope of cover


Why visit us?

Here at The Travel Visa Company we can take the stress out of your visa application process. Our staff will be on-hand to offer expert advice about our complete portfolio of visa procurement services including business visas, work permits and media visas. We will also have a range of literature at our stand and a few extra goodies to fill your exhibitor bags! Whether you are a business traveller, manager of an international company or are simply wanting to know the requirements for a personal holiday – we will be able to provide you with the latest information regarding entry requirements.

This year, representing The Travel Visa Company, we have:

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We look forward to seeing you!

You can follow us on our social networks for further updates during the run-up to the event!

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Fundraising For Charity

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Wear It. Beat It.

The British Heart Foundation created Wear It. Beat It. as a way of spreading awareness and bringing attention to the many heart diseases that affect up to 1 in 4 people in the UK. This charity revolves around raising money to help beat heart disease and to support those affected by it.

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Today (the 5th February) is the day that is dedicated to all things red! Here at The Travel Visa Company we have made sure we wore at least one item of red clothing; from ties and shirts to socks and gloves we painted the office red! We also have some delicious home-made cupcakes generously made by Karen (our favourite MD!)

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When you do Wear It. Beat It. for the BHF you’re helping to win the fight for every heartbeat by raising money for life saving research.

“Fight for every heartbeat.”

We have managed to raise £31.25 to date!

If you’d like to donate £3 to life saving research, text ‘RED’to 70060.

World Cancer Day

Yesterday (4th of February) marked the annual World Cancer Day. A day for everyone to come together and unite the world in the fight against cancer.

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Currently, 8.2 million people die from cancer worldwide every year, out of which, 4 million people die prematurely (aged 30 to 69 years). Already this year, we have unfortunately seen a number of famous faces lost to cancer such as David Bowie, Alan Rickman and Terry Wogan.

World Cancer day was not set up by a charity. The day came about in support of all the cancer charities out there. The day is not just to bring attention to cancer itself but to also bring attention to the people who are affected and the charities that care for these people.

Check out our blog from last years fundraising day.

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The aim is to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and education about the disease, pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action.

“Don’t give up. Don’t ever give up.”

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