I would be interested in finding out if any Australians have had their passports lost/stolen when applying for a tourist visa through the Vietnamese Embassy in Canberra.
My partner and I sent our completed visa application forms together with a cheque for the fee and our 2 current passports including a return express post envelope to obtain our Tourist visas. These were sent in express mail and the passports were DEFINATELY in the envelope. The package was lodged at our local post office.
2 days later we received a phone call from the visa section saying our passports were not in the envelope and could we forward them. We were astonished at this info as we had both checked all the documents together when sealing the envelope in our home.
I discussed this with the embassy and the guy just fobbed me off saying "Not in envelope must have been tampered with" We contacted our Post Office who could only trace the item, advising of the mail handling process and tracked it to the Embassy.
Funnily enough the money order was still in the envelope, however as it was made out to them I don't suppose anyone could cash it anyway.
When we contacted out own embassy to find out the protocol they said it didn't surprise them and happens all the time.
I am now up for $275 for a replacement and my partner $162 plus postage.
It would be interesting to hear if any other Australians have experienced anything similar.
The Australian Federal Police have been informed of my suspicions.
The moral of the story is : " When applying for these visas, DONT mail them Express Post, send them Registered Mail as it has built in insurance to recover debt.