Applying for an airport transit visa in Ghana

If you live in Ghana and want to apply for an airport transit visa for the Netherlands, find out about the rules and how to apply.

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 of your transit through the airport in the Netherlands.
  • You must submit a completed and signed Schengen visa application form. In the online form indicate ‘airport transit’ as the main purpose of your journey. 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.
  • Bring a photo that meets the Dutch requirements for passport photos.
  • When you submit your application your fingerprints will be taken. These will be held 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.
See the airport transit checklist (PDF, 228 KB).

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.

Your application will 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).

Applying for a visa in this country or region

Visa requirement lifted for airport transit visa in certain cases

Persons holding a valid visa or residence permit for the United States, Canada, Japan or the EER-countries do no longer require an airport transit visa if they do not leave the (NON -Schengen) International airport transit zone while transiting at a Schengen airport.

Should you however transit through two Schengen countries before continuing to your final destination, you do require a visa, even when you do not leave the airport. 

An example: Accra-Amsterdam-Madrid-Lima. As one would need to enter the Schengen airport transit zone to transit from Amsterdam to the flight to Madrid, a c-visa is required in this case.

Should you want to know whether you need a visa for the Dutch Caribbean please send an e-mail.

How and where can you make a visa appointment in Ghana?

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.

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 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.

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.

Who can submit a visa application at the consular department in Accra?

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 the Netherlands, Poland, Luxembourg, Austria, Lithuania or France, can apply with the Netherlands embassy in Accra, Ghana.

Short stay visa applications of frequent travellers, being persons who have obtained and correctly used minimum 2 Schengen visa in the past three years, may also be submitted by a representative on the given appointment date and time. The Embassy however has the right to always invite applicants to come for an (additional) interview after a first assessment of the visa application, if needed.

Applications received by DHL or mail are NOT considered.

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.