Beware of Scams 🛂 Uncovering the Ugly Truth Behind iVisa’s Business Practices

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Beware of Scams 🛂 Uncovering the Ugly Truth Behind iVisa’s Business Practices

iVisa is an online visa processing company that offers travel visas to individuals for various countries. Due to this company’s ubiquitous presence on Google, it has become the choice for many travelers.

But pre-paid “search engine optimization” doesn’t equate to professional integrity. As of January 2024 alone, there are over 3,000 reports of scams and unethical business practices from customers who have used iVisa’s services (see below).

So, here we go again… reporting on yet another company out to scam your money, and this time – before you even leave home.

You may recall the issues we reported with the Turkish Airlines Help Desk. We had a lot of feedback on that, and we’d like to continue helping travelers avoid the pitfalls of unscrupulous companies out to fleece you before you arrive at your destination.

In this article, we reveal the ways in which customers are being scammed out of their cash by iVisa, and what should be done to prevent this.

Highlights

 

Lack of Transparency – Limited & Misleading Information

One of the main problems with iVisa is the lack of transparency in the company’s visa processing system. Customers have reported feeling misled about the cost and timeline of their visa applications, or that they were given incorrect information about the requirements for their visas.

Another reason for dissatisfaction is the lack of clear and concise information provided by iVisa. Some customers have reported feeling confused or overwhelmed by the information provided on the company’s website and in their communications with customer service representatives.

It is evident that iVisa fail to provide clear, concise, and accurate information to customers about the visa processing process and what they can expect.

iVisa - Lack of Transparency and Limited & Misleading Information

iVisa – Lack of Transparency and Limited & Misleading Information

Zero iVisa Accountability

The lack of accountability in the company’s customer service is another issue. Customers report that their complaints were not taken seriously or were not  addressed in a timely manner.

Other customers reported that they were not kept informed about the status of their visa applications, or that they were given incorrect information about their visas.

To improve transparency and accountability, iVisa should have a customer-friendly refund policy with a system for tracking and resolving customer complaints, especially those related to refunds.

iVisa Trustpilot Reviews

Denied Refunds: The Shady Reality of iVisa’s Policies

Just check the reviews: There are multiple reports of denied refunds by iVisa, even in cases where the company failed to provide the services promised.

One of the excuses customers are denied refunds by iVisa is the company’s strict (i.e. ‘zero’ ) refund policy. Customers have reported that iVisa refuses to issue refunds even in cases where the visa application was rejected. The company clearly does not implement any kind of refund policy that considers the unique circumstances of each customer’s situation.

To address this issue, iVisa must provide clear, concise, and easy-to-understand information to customers about refunds and what they can expect if they are dissatisfied with the company’s services.

Denied Refunds: The Shady Reality of iVisa's Policies

Denied Refunds: The Shady Reality of iVisa’s Policies

Poor iVisa Customer Service

iVisa’s support has received numerous reports of poor service, including long wait times and being disconnected or transferred without resolving issues. This not only wastes the customer’s time but also creates frustration and dissatisfaction with the company.

The company should improve their phone and email support systems and hire additional customer service representatives. Additionally, their representatives need to be better trained and equipped to assist customers.

Lack of Helpful & Knowledgeable Representatives

Another reason for dissatisfaction with iVisa’s customer service is the lack of helpful and knowledgeable representatives. Customers have reported speaking with representatives who are not well-informed about their visa application process or who are not able to provide a solution to their issue.

iVisa need to invest in training their service representatives and providing them with the necessary tools and resources to actually assist customers.

Slow Processing Times

iVisa’s slow processing times cause significant stress and inconvenience for travelers, with customers waiting for weeks or even months to receive their visas.

The company lacks fast processing systems and fails to provide clear updates to customers about the status of their visa applications.

One Applicant’s Experience…

A recent visa applicant reported being scammed out of £169  by iVisa. She had requested a visa for a 2-week trip to Australia and was assured of an efficient and painless process on the iVisa website.

However, after paying the full fee upfront, she was presented with an extensive list of requirements and a multiple-page application form. She spent hours on the website trying to complete the form and was asked for extensive personal information including flight tickets, hotel reservations, marital status, sponsorship and financial details. She was also required to upload 47 pages of her passport (and iVisa’s scanning tool only accepts one photo at a time!).

She didn’t understand how she could be expected to pay thousands for flight tickets and hotels when she didn’t even know if she would be granted a visa (the Australian Home Affairs Dept often refuses visas with no reason provided).

So there was another email exchange (and delay) while she waited for iVisa’s response.

iVisa replied that she didn’t have to buy a flight ticket before applying for a visa. Instead, they told her to present a flight itinerary which could be booked without paying the full price of the travel ticket, and once she obtained her visa she could purchase the real flight ticket. This could also be applied for a hotel reservation.

Regarding sponsorship she would have to provide a letter stating that she was married and her husband would be responsible for the expenses.
So, iVisa required a flight itinerary, details of the accommodation where she *planned* to stay, and a letter to indicate her marital status and the fact she was being financially supported.

She also needed to provide biometric fingerprinting, results of a full health examination, and a chest Xray

Since a registered biometrics office was not available in her country of residence, they suggested the solution for this would be if she travelled either to France or Greece for the biometrics appointment. All this had to be done within 14 days, otherwise her visa application would be cancelled.

Even after supplying such data, the Australian Dept of Home Affairs clearly stated that: “The provision of personal identifiers is only one of several stages in the visa assessment process”… so there is still no assurance of being granted a visa.

“Frustrated & Disappointed” The Dark Side of iVisa’s Customer Service

It was at this point she decided that she could not proceed further. She calculated that the actual costs involved just to make this one visa application would be in excess of £700.

At no point did iVisa staff indicate in advance exactly what is involved in this type of application, as well as the ‘íncidental’ costs. To ensure that potential customers are not deterred, the iVisa website also fails to highlight these important, time-consuming and costly requirements.

In this particular case, although the customer understood that iVisa incurred some incidental costs on her behalf for their initial enquiries, she felt that a refund was in order since the process ended early, and she would not be receiving the visa she applied for.

iVisa replied that she was not eligible for a refund because they used their resources filling out and submitting her application to the government.

In our view, clearly her application was not complete – it was barely started. iVisa’s contribution was simply to forward an application to the Australian Dept of Home Affairs, and then to return their reply. iVisa did not explain in advance the time necessary and the multiple requirements involved. Since the majority of the steps in this process were in any case not completed, iVisa are not entitled to withhold the funds they initially accepted.

Throughout this lengthy and frustrating process, the applicant reported that iVisa’s email responses were invariably polite boiler-plate messages full of platitudes and with little genuine consideration or substance.

In conclusion, iVisa’s lack of transparency, accountability, customer-friendly policies, poor customer service, slow processing times, and misleading information are a cause for concern for travelers. The company needs to address these concerns if they want to avoid permanently damaging their credibility and avoiding litigation.

You don’t need to take our word for it – Check out the Trustpilot reviews just since December 2023:

 


If you’re thinking of taking a trip without all this hassle, take a look at our Tropical Travel Plans. You may also like:


12 Comments

Order #850161

January 16, 2024at 6:58 pm

I have experienced substandard services from iVisa. My trip from Zimbabwe to the UK now hangs in the balance because of the unprofessional services I got from iVisa. Ony 2 of their agents seemed to eventually understand my needs. The rest were like robots.
Sadly, by the time I realised that the team may not have expertise at all, my time had run out.
My iVisa order is 850161

    SandSpice

    January 17, 2024at 3:46 am

    Thanks for sharing your experience with us, and we’re sorry to hear how things panned out.’Unprofessional’ is the right description, though others have used harsher words for iVisa’s inexpertise.

Danielle J

December 12, 2023at 3:06 pm

iVisa is a scam and will steal your money.

I paid $200+ for an expedited Australia ETA and never received it.

We filled out all forms send to us and got an “approval” email only to get to the airport to discover it was a passenger incoming traveler form (something we didn’t need)… not the expedited ETA. We almost missed our flight because of this.

We also found out at the airport the official ETA approval process only takes 30 mins and there was no need for an “expedited ETA” approval process at all. The iVisas advertisement literally was a scam to make you pay a bunch of unneeded money.

I have tried emailing with iVisa the last month and they are refusing to refund me because they said they sent the passenger form… so I received “a document”. Also each time they email back I get a different story or reason they will not refund me .

Seriously they will just steal your money and not provide the correct form. Don’t use this service… it is a scam.

    SandSpice

    December 13, 2023at 7:50 am

    Agreed. Every time you contact them you are dealt with by a different agent who has a different narrative on why you can’t be rightfully reimbursed your money.
    It’s their standard script. The first thing we can do is highlight their fraudulent practices online until enough people understand that iVisa=SCAM. The second step is to forward your case, with detailed records, to the financial ombudsman of your particular country/jurisdiction.

Angela chukwu

November 1, 2023at 2:24 am

IVisa is fake and they are scammers. They scammed me and refuse to refund my visa money. God will punish them

Stephanie Johnson

October 30, 2023at 11:18 am

Print out the complaints on this site and others you can find. Open a dispute with your bank and ask them to retrieve your money from iVisa. Most large banks will assist you with this. Know that if you apply for a visa directly from the destination country they will ask you for only XYZ and 123. But if iVisa asks you for “more” than the actual country, it will strengthen your case with the bank. You can also file a complaint with the attorney general of your state / country—and email iVisa a copy, which will get them to think. Tell the bank that iVisa purports to have their HQ in the U.S., but it’s actually in Madrid, Spain. Good luck.

Stephanie Johnson

October 20, 2023at 4:01 pm

And that’s not all. They keep asking me for a passport–style photo from the waist up. Why? The Australian Gov. does not require this!—having traveled there from LAX 20 times. I asked why 3 times and they say it’s a government compliance thing. I asked “what government”? And they refuse to answer. All kinds of things can be done with these extra photos and personal information, like creating fake passports and IDs, or sold to the highest bidder. I’m a paralegal. So they better not muck with me.

[email protected]

September 11, 2023at 2:15 pm

I lost 2000 USD
Join to connect with others who have been scammed by iVisa. Together, we can make a difference and help each other navigate these situations.

https://chat.whatsapp.com/EQQdWuuM2y1HII5t6xXpB1

Maria George

August 12, 2023at 2:06 pm

All the numbers listed are out of service, the address is a residential address. The number is 305 932-7804 goes directly to VM. I will not do business with a company that does not provide a live person to answer questions and concerns.

    SandSpice

    August 13, 2023at 4:07 am

    This seems to be a trend with many businesses nowadays. You can *never* reach a ‘live’ customer service representative. Every successive contact we had with iVisa was dealt with by a different representative whose job it was to deny our legitimate claim.

Maxine Pereira

April 12, 2023at 1:50 am

We have also had a really unpleasant experience with iVisa. My daughter in law has an Indian passport and is resident in the UK. IVisa promised a Schengen Visa for Greece but after 3 months they have done nothing except take her money and refused to communicate with her. Now she and my son are facing losing over £1000 in flights, accommodation and car hire. The company was only registered here 9 months ago and lists 2 directors, based in the Philippines, who have no contact details at all. Do NOT use them.

    SandSpice

    April 12, 2023at 5:43 am

    Thanks for the feedback, Maxine. Unfortunately, there are many cases similar to yours. iVisa attempts to dominate Google search results, not only with its own self-promoting articles, but also using fake so-called ‘independent’ article which praise their services. Unsuspecting people trust their ranking on Google, and easily fall prey to this type of hype. We’re on a mission to change all that.

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