The #1 question I have been asked in the last 2 weeks, “Do you have travel dates yet?!”.
The short answer, no. The longer answer …. well … let’s see.
My Article 5 paperwork was picked up from the US Consulate on 2/27/17. After this, it was sent to Beijing to the Welfare Office where everything is gone over again and travel dates are issued. Typically, travel dates can be given 2-10 days after your Article 5 paperwork has been picked up … but that is only if your payment (that was paid when you originally submit your dossier to China) can be proven. For most people, their agency sends their payment by wire transfer and the receipts are electronic (and easy to find in everyone’s system) … this isn’t the case for my agency. We pay with paper checks (why … I have no idea). This means that the receipt has to be produced and it has to go through the Welfare office’s system to prove that you have paid the fee.
What does all this mean?! Well … it means I wait, again, for longer than all the other families. It means that EVERY FAMILY that had my pick-up date already has travel dates … while I wait for proof of payment.
Frustrated doesn’t BEGIN to describe how I feel right now. YES, I know that God’s planning is perfect and that there is some purpose for all the delays, but the wait is so hard and is getting harder the closer to travel it becomes.
As of right now, it is estimated that I will find out travel dates next week or later. This will push my travel back to April or later. The downfall with April travel is that the first week is a holiday in China – so not much is available that week. The other issue is that the last 2 weeks of April in Guangzhou (where the US consulate is) there will be a trade show which means LOTS of people in the city, increased prices of everything, and difficulty finding a hotel will be multiplied … yay.
SO, Do I have travel dates yet …. no .. but hopefully in the next week or so there will be SOME change in status.