Visa to Ghana Embassy in Togo
Lome Togo West Africa
Thursday, May 31, 2007
I went to the Ghana Embassy at 8:00 am when it opened, received a Visa to Ghana the next at 10:00 am. It is relatively easy, 12,000 CFA or about 25 US dollars for 30 days.
It was fun; I paid 400 CFA for a Motorcycle Taxi from the Hotel to the Ghana, Embassy. I am finally deciding, the most I have paid in Lome for a moto in the city is 600 CFA and the normal is fee 200 CFA providing I never ask the price before I get on the moto.
I needed four photos and one man had problems because of having a smaller photo, I am not sure, I was lucky to have two sizes of photos, I am carrying a lot of photos, however now I need a bigger size also to carry.
I took along an Hotel address to stay in Ghana, or the address of at Hotel, I am not sure, I think they needed it, but hard to say, I am not clear. I know the last time I entered, they needed a Hotel name and Address.
This was painless and interesting, some man from Australia, not too well dressed, wearing sunglasses or hanging his sunglasses on the back of his neck filled out the application in Green Ink. The one man came out and hollered at him, I gave him my black pen and thought; you do seem like a Green Ink type of person. The young man argued with the official man and I also thought, this is a great way to wait for a Visa for weeks.
The Sunglasses man was a volunteer, and I think every other white person in the room was a volunteer; we had time to talk because the made us wait for unknown reasons from about 8:00 am to 9:20 am when a man appeared.
I will never forget his words,
- No Visas today, I am already too tired. -
When I make an application for a Visa, I always allow close to five days of play time, I have discovered anywhere on the planet the application for a visa is a lottery on how the rules are enforced. If you are willing to wait, they will figure out how to give you a Visa.
I have three months to enter Ghana, after that, the Visa expires.
I repeated the too tired already to another person later and he said,
- Oh, he is not too tired, he is waiting to hear, I need it today. -
Then the man did this little hand gesture, I think it is the universal way of saying how to give a tip to the man. He did a twist of his hand, then goes submarine under the table.
I do not know, the man did look tired, the day before was a Fete or Holiday, this was the first day after a long holiday weekend, and for sure the man looked like he was dragging. I did not expect to get a visa the same day, so for me it was irrelevant. I truly believe a person should never plan to get a Visa in less than five days or they will be in a world of trouble. I never expect an rules or guidelines of an embassy to be obeyed, followed or to be professional, I am talking about all embassies on the planet, including the USA.
The Togo, Embassy to Ghana was nothing like the Ghana Embassy in Delhi, it was obvious here they were issuing Visas on a regular basis, and they were going to issue Visas. The Delhi, India Embassy serving the India people had this long list of onerous requirements and who knows which ones they would or would not enforce.
There are more than I would ever expect India people coming to Africa to work or live, I do not understand, they seem to come to manage a business, and there is less competition for workers or it is easier for them to find a job here in a way. Not really logical and common sense, but true there is more work here for people from India than in India.
No Visas today, I am already too tired... a great line.
Fun and games in the Embassy of Ghana.
Visa to Ghana Embassy in Togo
Accra Ghana for Airports and Visas
Accra, Ghana West Africa
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Accra appears to be an almost ideal location to base the acquisition of Visas for West Africa. The airport is one of the cheapest entry and exit gates in West Africa and on average can be about 300-400 USA dollars cheaper than either Ivory Coast or Togo.
I have been having a few looks at this page to discover how to get Visas for all the countries to the West and North of Ghana; it looks like I can get almost all of them in Accra, Ghana.
I am probably going to apply for the Burkina Faso Visa on Monday and hold off on the Liberia and Sierra Leone. I am thinking it is better to take an upper road loop to Burkina Faso, Mali and on to Senegal, and then come along the coast back to Accra. I think some overland truck campers come this route and I can learn from someone who spent a year researching the trip before leaving.
Getting a Visa can be easy or difficult, Liberia wants three days, and Sierra Leone wants about 7 days, this is 10 days of living in Accra, Ghana. A person has to decide, do I want to invest 10 days into Accra, so far my answer is no, if this were Cape Coast, Ghana I would say yes.
I tried to ask the Sierra Leone Embassy how soon I needed to enter; I could not get by the reception person to find out the answer.
For example, I got the Ghana Visa in two days in Lome, Togo, I then had three months of leeway time before I needed to enter Ghana or the Visa would expire. This leeway time makes getting Visa too soon a problem, I got cheated by Niger and had to pay 40 US for a Visa because they refused to honor a valid Visa Entente because they wanted to ignore how the leeway and use of the Visa worked. The Visa attained in Cote d’Ivoire was good, but the time to cross Ghana before made confusion that helped Niger cheat me. Even the smallest confusion in interpretation and the crossing of a border can erupt into a pay questionable and more or less bribes to get it to work fees.
I need to get a Visa to a country less than one month before I enter if possible and not more than two months if possible to optimize my chance of not having problems.
The Hotel situation in Accra is close to bleak at the under 10-dollar price range, I am paying 80-100,000 for a great private room, with a shared toilet in the double road belt area.
I took a Taxi to the Crystal Hostel, it cost 15 US for a room, and 10 for a dorm bed, then the cost of a taxi back and forth to the embassies would be double the cost and double the time as it is out through a ton of traffic area.
The central beltway or the YWCA area would be the ideal location to get Visas. Anyway, I do it, two people make more sense for rooms in Accra, and I am tempted to think the George something hotel would be the best all around for a couple.
The best reason to be in Accra so far as of today is for the internet, it is Skype.com fast, I can connect my computer and make telephone calls cheap to about anywhere at some cafes. I was all excited because the Crystal Hostel has WIFI, and when I got there is was not on, and not being used, one computer and he said I had to pay if I did more than casually checked my email. The area is more typical Ghana though and would be more cultural than the central beltway, however to me strictly taxi.
I was hoping to find some Hong Kong style, Expat hangouts in Accra, however I have only seen NGO people and it looks like World Vision was building a new building. I am not sure, it seemed like the Crystal was out in NGO central, so maybe the reason for being popular.
I looked at my map; the Airport, Embassies, and Internet are my three reasons to be in Accra, Ghana. I am trying to suss out the city, however somewhere between the airport and the Embassy area would be ideal place to find a Hotel. I would expect to find an Internet café, as they do seem to be most places.
The big bus situation is semi-nuts, it appears I need to take a taxi to find out the cost and times, etc, and if I did that, by the time paid for that and did all the taxi mess, it would be just better to take off and hope to snag either a Tro Tro 15 passenger van and get to Cape Coast quicker in total travel time.
All in all Accra is a modern city; out towards the Airport I saw a mall and some large grocery stores, some huge housing additions. This all looks very modern; all the neighborhoods around the Embassies seem nice, shaded and pleasant.
I would say the Hotel I am in presently, however the Ghana people on the internet threaten me.
Senegal may have all the same Embassies, and I think more Western Countries do not need a Visa to enter. I think there are some surfers over in that area also to lend to beach life if it exist in Africa.
Accra Ghana for Airports and Visas