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Moving To Ghana From America: 10 Things To Know

Ghana is one of the first nations that likely comes to mind when considering Western Africa, perhaps due to the hospitality brand and the fact that if you happen to be in the Southern part, you may be closer to the center of the world, i.e., the intersection between the Prime Meridian and the Equator. Togo surrounds Ghana to the east, Burkina Faso to the north, and Côte d’Ivoire to the West.

The South borders the Gulf of Guinea, which leads to the Atlantic Ocean. Although many other countries are in Ghana’s expatriate population, Americans are disproportionately prevalent. Four hundred years after the first enslaved Africans arrived in the United States, Ghana launched the “Year of Return, Ghana 2019” initiative to encourage the descendants of former slaves to visit or finally live in Africa.

Since then, 5,000 Americans have visited Ghana and chosen to stay. Has the idea of relocating to Ghana ever occurred to you? Are you moving to this West African country for a job, school, or a new way of life? Are you looking to purchase land in Ghana once you decide to stay? Are you on the lookout for any real estate agents in Ghana? Whatever your motivations or questions, this article has got you covered.

Included are 10 things anyone moving to Ghana from America should know.

1. BUY LAND INSTEAD OF RENTING

Ghana is a diversified nation with a wide range of suitable lodging options, from coastal cities like Cape Coast to chilly mountainous towns like Aburi to lush landscapes close to rivers near Lake Volta, like Akosombo. The variety of lodging options is tremendous. If you are here temporarily, it will help you to stay in a hotel or Airbnb near you.

However, if you intend to make Ghana your second home, you should consider getting your place of abode. It is better to buy land in Ghana and build than rent in the long run.  Due to its chilly climate, you can consider looking out for land for sale in Aburi, Ghana. Or You can consider land for sale in Kumasi, Ghana, to experience another side of Ghana. However, most visitors to Ghana stay in Accra, the country’s capital.

You can access all Western conveniences, such as restaurants, grocery stores, and other expatriates. East Legon, Airport Hills, and Osu are a few of the Greater Accra region’s most well-liked districts among foreigners. If you need more information on buying land in Ghana, Sundance Estates can help. Feel free to add us on Whatsapp at 00233201924859. You can also join our Facebook group here.

1. Entering Ghana as A Foreigner

To go to Ghana, citizens of some African nations are not need to apply for visas in their home countries. Instead, at the Accra international airport and a handful of seaports, they can obtain an entry visa stamp upon arrival. Malawi, Zambia, Lesotho, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Uganda, and Swaziland fall under the list of eligible countries.

The ECOWAS member states and Kenya, Malaysia, Singapore, Egypt, and Hong Kong do not require their citizens to obtain visas. Everyone else must apply for an entry visa at the Ghanaian embassy in their place of residence. The Ministry of Tourism’s website lists Ghana’s high commissioners, consulates, and embassies worldwide.

The following items are necessary to apply for an entry visa: your passport, valid for at least six months at the time of application. You also need two filled-out and signed application forms, two passport-sized pictures, and proof of sufficient funds, including the names and addresses of references. When visiting Ghana for the first time, they can assist you if you plan to stay at a hotel.

A single-entry visa is good for three months after purchase, whereas a multiple-entry visa is good for twelve months. Your stay in Ghana is not limited by the validity period. Your stay in the country is restricted to 60 days, determined by immigration officers at your entry point.

2. Entering Ghana As A Dual Citizen

You can skip the visa requirements if you prove you have dual citizenship. American citizens with valid proof of their Ghanaian citizenship may apply for dual citizenship to enter the country. You may offer one of two proofs to support this: a Ghanaian passport, voter ID card, or birth certificate of your parents, names, and addresses of two relatives who reside in Ghana.

Your dual citizenship also requires completing an application and a photocopy of an American naturalization certificate or passport. A Ghanaian embassy or consulate in the United States will have the form available. You can also mail a request for it. A $250 fee must be paid when you submit the application.

3. Life in Ghana As A Tourist

Most tourists entering Ghana do so on a tourist visa. You will need to file for an extension to that entry visa after 30, 60, or 90 days, depending on the stamp at immigration when you entered the country. Failure to pay on time might result in overstay costs and be annoying. Applying for a non-resident ID card while staying more than 90 days is obligatory.

This enables non-citizens to notify the local authorities of their presence. However, it does not give you a pass to not renew your visa. Ensure not to let it expire once again. If you are certain that you wish to relocate to Ghana, you should apply for a resident permit. You won’t need to go through the standard immigration process if you’re a permanent resident of Ghana.

4. Get a Work Permit

You do not intend to stay as a tourist if you find employment. You must first apply for a work permit before a residence permit. The Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) must receive applications for work permits. your prospective employer should be able to provide you with the relevant paperwork. You must submit the following materials with your completed and signed application: a completed work permit application form, resume, and academic or professional credentials.

You also need your work agreement, a police record from the United States, and a health report copy of the pertinent passport pages. You will need to give your employer all relevant documentation for them to perform the necessary procedures, as the application for the work permit must be submitted in person at the GIS headquarters in Ghana. Typically, processing takes four weeks.

6. Get A Residence Permit

A foreign individual with a residency permit can reside in Ghana for a specific time. A foreign national who plans to stay in Ghana for an extended period of time may be granted a resident permit. It may typically be awarded for one to four years in the initial instance, with a maximum of eight years. A residence permit must be applied for and granted before a foreign national can study, conduct business, work, or engage in any other employment-related activity in Ghana.

A resident permit may be available to retirees, people with regular income, or people with land who can show that they won’t be charged using public funds. You must have been lawfully admitted to Ghana at the time of the application, which is one of the requirements for the issue of a residence permit. When this permit is issued, it is also required that you refrain from starting a business, engaging in a trade, or engaging in a profession other than what the permit may allow.

7. Shopping In Ghana

Compared to Americans, most Ghanaians eat more naturally. They frequently buy food at nearby markets, where it was caught, killed, or picked that day. If you need some of the conveniences of home, there are also many Western food stores like the Accra Mall and Palace Mall in Accra. However, the import expenses are high, so if you prefer these kinds of basics, budget more money each week for groceries.

There are clothing stores that sell Western attire. They pay import fees and pay taxes as well. For some things, finding a range of sizes can be challenging. Be prepared for a challenge if you require custom sizes, such as extra tall, long, or short. Clothing created in Ghana is always an option, and the costs are reasonable.

8. Healthcare in Ghana

Ghana has a national health insurance scheme in place, thus, there is healthcare here. Given that, look for hospitals in your neighborhood that can offer you the care and expertise you are accustomed to. Numerous doctors and medical facilities that resemble those in the West can give you high-quality medical care for a small portion of the price without the need for pricey insurance.

However, Ghana lacks a fast-response and reliable emergency services infrastructure. That might be a worry for certain individuals and something to consider before moving. You might want to keep your private health insurance in force or save a reserve in a local bank account for emergencies.

9. Safety in Ghana

Ghana has a warm, welcoming culture that is renowned for putting visitors at ease. The country is like a community of several ethnic groups, each with its own distinctive traditions and customs. Ghanaians are renowned for their friendliness and hospitality, and guests are frequently accorded dignity and respect.

Despite Ghana’s very low crime rate, exercising caution and being aware of your surroundings is crucial. Protecting your possessions and avoiding strolling alone at night when traveling to any location is wise. You should prevent unnecessary encounters with local law enforcement officials and ensure you abide by local laws and customs.

Although Ghana is a typically calm and tranquil nation, it is always advisable to use caution. It is also necessary to be wary of tricksters since they may not approach you forcefully, but they can deceive you with their wits. Ghana is frequently ranked as one of the safest nations in Africa. To put it another way, interacting with the local police is one of the annoyances of living in Ghana.

Most of the time, dealing with the police in Ghana is not risky, and there is almost never a chance that someone could lose their life. In most cases, they enjoy intimidating you. Police frequently request bribes, which is not unusual.

10. Tourist Sites to Visit

Ghana is home to many beautiful tourist sites, both in and out of Ghana. So, if you happen to be around, you should visit them. There is Independence Square, Kwame Nkrumah Memorial Park, Osu Castle, Labadi Beach, Kalkudi Mosque, Jamestown Lighthouse, Labadi Beach, Bojo Beach, National Museum, Parliament House, National Theatre, James Ussher Fort, Legon Botanical Garden, etc.

Some other tourist attractions you can explore in Ghana include Cape Coast Castle, Kakum National Park, Aburi Botanical Garden, Akosombo Dam, Manhyia Palace, Nzulezu, Lake Bosomtwe, Boti Falls, Larabanga Mosque, Mole National Park, Adomi Bridge, Elmina Castle, Wli waterfalls, Kintampo waterfalls, Mountain Afadjato, Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary, among others.

You can visit many places and have fun during your stay in Ghana.

Conclusion

In summary, moving from one place can be an adventure or a disaster, depending on how well prepared you are and your expectations of the experiences you hope to create. So, here are 10 things you should know before you leave the United States of Ghana from America to make the move a great and memorable one.

FAQs

What are the different types of real estate companies in Ghana?

In Ghana, there are three different kinds of real estate organizations. Residential real estate, commercial real estate, and industrial real estate are some of them. Residential real estate is sold or rented to people who desire to live there and is only meant for residential usage. Townhouses, condominiums, and gated communities are all included in this.

Real estate utilized for businesses such as offices, hotels, restaurants, ice cream shops, and other commercial ventures is referred to as commercial real estate. Whereas commercial real estate is constructed to make a profit. Examples of industrial real estate are factories, farms, mines, and warehouses.

How to find real estate agents in Accra

Finding real estate agents in Accra can be easy with the help of referral sources. You should be on the lookout for land specialists who can provide you with a list of reputable real estate brokers.

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