April 18, 2018
This is a story about how I tried to loophole the GOG and ended up in the neighboring country of Togo.
Loopholes are fun aren’t they? Well, they are until they aren’t but hey! I got a cool story and an even cooler stamp in my passport so it’s a win.
So here’s the deal, my visa for Ghana is for 5 years but when you enter the country, they either give you 30 or 60 days to stay consecutively. If you are staying longer than that, you are supposed to spend $120USD to get a residency permit but a sweet little loophole allows you to leave the country before your days expire then re-enter and get more days. My original plan was to just take to loophole route but a week before my days were up, I freaked out and was terrified I was going to get detained in Togo or denied reentry into Ghana so plans changed. I went ahead and paid the money to get my Ghana card which I needed to apply for residency and thought it would be smooth sailing. I thought wrong. It takes 2 weeks minimum for the residency permit to be processed and they immigration office takes your passport. At the end of the day, I was down $120 and still had to leave the country.
A week later on a rainy Saturday morning we headed to Togo. I wish it was really as easy as that sentence made it sounds but of course it wasn’t.
*the tro tro’s are the public transportation all through Accra and all of Ghana. They are usually super sketchy 15 passenger vans that go toward Accra/Circle or Madina *
My friends looked at me like I was crazy and asked if it was legit and my response was “I don’t know, guess we will find out”
*spoiler alert: it was legit*
Overall we had a time. The hotel was nice, the gelato was amazing, and we have a story. If you find yourself traveling by land from Ghana to Togo, be smart and as soon as you exchange your money, put it away. If possible, I would highly recommend converting currency and getting your visa’s before you go rather than at the boarder. I would also highly recommend knowing some French or going with someone who does. While the majority of Ghana speaks or can at the very least understand broken English, when you cross the boarder it is all French.
That’s all for now, see y’all in my next post!