Have you been saving for years to go on the once-in-a-lifetime holiday you have always wanted? Once you arrived at the airport were you denied access into the country? This happened to Mario Quintela who has been saving for years to go to NZ but he wasn’t allowed in.
Mr Quintela’s lifelong friends, Alexandra couple Nuno Vilela and Pam Jones, are now questioning the processes used at the New Zealand border.
“He arrived in Auckland Airport on January 1st. We’re guessing he looked nervous because he hates flying. He’d never travelled overseas, he hardly speaks any English and the immigration officials didn’t believe him that he was only coming here for a holiday,” Ms Jones said.
Mr Vilela said immigration officials showed no feeling.
“Robocop seems like a teddy bear compared to those guys. There was no feeling whatsoever.”
To encourage tourism, New Zealand has an agreement with Portugal which means Portuguese don’t need a visa to travel here for less than three months.
“You need to meet standard health and character requirements. You need to have money. You need to have a return ticket. He had all of those things,” Ms Jones said.
Ms Jones says they feel humiliated and very sad and ashamed that Mario got sent home and they are doing everything they can to get him into the country.
Check the video out here: tvnz.co.nz