Applying for a short-stay Schengen visa in Ghana

If you live in Ghana and want to apply for a short-stay visa for the Netherlands, find out about the rules and how to apply.

Step-by-step guide to applying for a visa

  1. Choose the right visa
  2. Apply for a visa in your country
  3. Travel with a visa or object to the decision to refuse your application

What do I need to do?

  • You must submit a passport or other travel document issued within the last 10 years. This must have at least 2 blank pages and be valid for at least another 3 months after the date you intend to leave the Schengen area.
  • You must submit a completed and signed visa application form (PDF, 252 KB). Each person travelling with you on your travel document must submit their own visa form. Forms for children under the age of 18 need to be signed by a parent or guardian.
  • If you are under 18 and are travelling without one or both of your parents or guardians, ask them to sign a consent form. Border guards may ask to see this form when you arrive in the Netherlands.
  • The photo you submit with your application must meet Dutch requirements for passport photos.
  • When you submit your application your fingerprints will be taken. These will remain valid for 5 years. Some applicants, such as children under the age of 12, do not need to have their fingerprints taken.
  • You will be charged a fee for your application. If you apply through an external service provider you will also have to pay an extra fee to the provider.

You must also provide a number of documents to ensure that your application is assessed correctly.
Please complete the appropriate checklist:

How much does a visa cost?

When you apply for a visa at a Dutch embassy or consulate, you must pay a fee. You can find the fee on the fees page. If you apply through an external service provider, such as a visa agency, you will have to pay an extra fee to the provider.

How long does it take?

The earliest you can apply is 3 months before you intend to travel. You should apply no later than 15 working days in advance.

In most cases, you will be informed within 15 calendar days whether your application has been successful. Sometimes it can take up to 30 days if more time is needed, and up to 60 days in exceptional cases, for example if extra documents are required.

How will my application be assessed?

Some Schengen member states want to exchange information on visa applicants. This check (known as ‘consultation’) is mandatory for certain nationalities and can take up to 7 days.

Your application will also be checked in the Schengen Information System (SIS II). In addition, your application details will be checked and saved in the Visa Information System (VIS).

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs uses information-supported decision-making to make better, quicker decisions on visa applications. For more information on how your data will be processed, see the privacy statement.

Applying for a visa in this country or region

Representation agreements

The consular department assesses Schengen visa applications and Dutch Caribbean visa applications. The Kingdom of the Netherlands has made representation arrangements for short stay visa applications (thus for a stay of maximum 90 days per 180 days period) with other Schengen countries.

Residents of Ghana travelling to Portugal, Poland, Luxembourg, Austria, France, or Lithuania, can also apply with the Netherlands embassy in Accra, Ghana.

Those wishing to settle in the aforementioned countries and wishing to apply for a residence permit should however turn to the nearest embassy of the aforementioned countries to start the proper procedure.

Visa procedure for residents of Togo and Ivory Coast

Residents of Ivory Coast travelling to the Netherlands should apply for a short stay visa at the embassy of Belgium in Abidjan.

Residents of Togo travelling to the Netherlands should apply for a short stay visa at the French embassy in Togo.

Visa procedure for residents of Liberia and Sierra Leone

Residents of Liberia and Sierra Leone wishing to travel or reside in the Netherlands should apply for a short stay visa at the Netherlands embassy in Accra, Ghana.

How and where do I make an appointment? (procedure for applications as of 15 January 2018)

To optimize the service to our visa clients, as of Monday, 15 January 2018, short-term Schengen and Dutch Caribbean visa applications may be lodged through the external service provider VFS Global in Accra.

How do I schedule my appointment with VFS Global?

Appointments for a Schengen or Dutch Caribbean visa may be made through either one of the below options:

  1. Make an online appointment via the website of VFS Global.
  2. Contact the VFS Global call center:
    * by telephone via the number; (+233) (0)30 274 6216 (Monday until Friday between 8.30 - 17.00 hrs, except for public holidays) or
    * via e-mail: info.nlgh@vfshelpline.com.

What is the fee for a visa?

At the overview of consular fees you can check the costs of a Schengen and Caribbean visa. Applications lodged via VFS Global are subject to an additional service fee.

Walk-in system for diplomatic and service passport holders and MVV applicants

Holders of diplomatic and service passports as well as applicants for long stay visa (MVV) to the Netherlands, are welcome at this embassy without an appointment from Monday until Friday between 8.00 and 10.00 hrs.

All applicants must apply in person.

Closing days of the embassy

We advise you to check the days on which the embassy is closed.

Processing time

The average processing time is seven working days. In case the application is incomplete, needs further investigation or in case the application has to be forwarded to the competent authorities in the Netherlands for further consideration, the assessment may take weeks or even longer. Visa applicants are therefore advised to submit their applications approximately 4 weeks in advance.

In case the embassy requests additional documents in support of a visa application, they may be brought to the embassy on working days at 14.00 hrs. without prior appointment.

Collection of passports of applications submitted directly at this embassy

Collection times are on working days between 14.00 - 15.00 hrs.

If the visa applicant is not able to collect his/her decision and passport, the visa applicant may authorize another person to collect it on his/her behalf. In that case the embassy requires a written, signed authorization letter from the visa applicant, including a copy of the visa applicant’s passport.

Reporting back

If you are requested to report back to the embassy upon return to Ghana, you may come on working days between 8.00 – 9.00 hrs. without prior appointment.

Fraud

The embassy will report the use of false and counterfeit documents to the Ghanaian Police (CID) or GIS (Ghana Immigration Service) depending on the forgery; these documents will not be returned to the applicant.

The embassy often receives e-mails from European citizens who are in contact with someone from this region through the internet. Often these contacts result in scamming whereby the scammer does not reveal his or her true identity and requests to transfer high amounts for various reasons (legalizations, costly visa procedures, medical check-ups and supporting documents not required by Dutch authorities in relation to consular procedures, hospitalization, inheritance, gold ornaments). Beware of this (romance) scamming.

Other than warning for this type of scamming, the embassy cannot be of assistance in taking legal steps once European citizens have become victims of this type of scamming.