Things To Get Used To When Coming To Ghana Pt 1

Hey Guys!,

Today I’ll be sharing with you a few things you’ll notice that are different here in Ghana than in the U.S or European Countries. So without further ado, let’s gets started!

  • Drinks: One of the biggest things you’ll notice that are different here in Ghana is their water. Here in Ghana they are most commonly sold in 16oz Pouches(or satches as their more commonly known). As you know in America we usually buy bottled water from the store if we don’t have any with us. But when you get to Ghana you’ll most likely be buying more satchet water than bottled water, though they Do have bottled water here if you want it. My personal opinion is that their water is good depending on what company you buy your sachets from. A few of the most popular water companies her in Ghana imo are, Standard water,Voltic water, Rock Ice, Special Ice, Sama Ice, and Luna Ice, just to name a few. Now for soft drinks and juices they do have, Sprite, Coca-Cola, and Fanta for those that want to continue to drink American style soda, they also have a lot of other kinds of soft drinks as well as “Knockoffs” to the original American brands. Now as far as juices are concerned they cost way more than soft drinks while a Sprite can cost 1.5 – 2 Cedis per bottle a carton of grape juice can cost you from 8 – 15 Cedis. My advice to those that like their OJ, Apple juice, and Grape juice is to make it yourself. Unless you want to go to one of the grocery stores and pay out the nose 😂.                                                                                              
  • Another thing that’s a MUST to get used to is food choices! It’s best to prepare yourself mentally for the struggle of finding foods that fits your diet before coming to ghana or learn how to alter it. When you get here you’ll notice rather quickly that Soups, rice dishes, and stews are staples here in Ghana which means that the ingredients needed for such dishes will be in abundance. You’ll find out that most of the ingredients needed to make a hamburger, lasagna, pizza, French fries, etc are not readily available and you’ll have to ride a few tro-tro’s and/or taxis to get them, Unless you go somewhere like Accra. And even if you do go to the grocery stores in Accra it will be Over priced!                                 
  • Sweets! Upon settling in and visiting the street marts as well as the grocery stories here like Melcom, the Palace, and Stop-N-Save, you’ll find that a lot of the candies you are used to in America will be here, though some will have a different name. For example, if your a fan of kit kats when you get here you should look for King TATS they don’t taste exactly the same but they’re close enough.  If you’re looking for some ice cream,  Fan Ice is the way to go (although In my humble opinion the only one that Taste anything close to authentic is the Vanilla flavored kind) just to name a few. Though most of the sweets (and “Knockoffs” )  you’ll find here are from the Middle East. They do have a few local sweets like Cutty Cake (Equivalent to peanut brittle), Chin Chin, Bowl fruit (Equivalent to giant doughnut holes), and Coconut Candy (hard candy) just to name few..
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    Housing In Ghana

    Hey Guys!,
    Today we will be discussing how to secure housing here in Ghana. Securing a house here in Ghana is different from securing housing in the U.S. So with our further ado, let’s get started!

    • If you’re interested in finding a house in Ghana TonATon is a good place to find houses, agents, cars, ect. It’s like a Ghanaian Craigslist. It will make finding a housing easier.                                     Its better to RENT a house here rather than buy one. It’s cheaper and if you don’t plan on staying here for years it’s the best option besides getting and apartment. Renting is called letting here in Ghana(Important to remember). “Letting” a house here in Ghana requires 6 months, 1 year, or 2 years payment payers Upfront.The further you are away from Accra or and other Major cities the cheaper letting is.                                                                                               
    • When considering what house to let and your coming from a another country it would be better to ask the agent your working with to find you a house that’s Self Contained(Self contained means there’s a wall all the way around it and a gate for the entrance for security proposes). It’s Important to understand You are responsible for the up keep & maintenance of the house your letting. Unless you agree on the contract for the owner to do it. I’m my opinion it would be best to do it yourself.                                  
    • Not all housing has 24 hour running water or especially hot water (you must have a hot water heater installed or already installed in your abode you choose). So I would recommend that you get used to taking short (To conserve water) cold showers and using a PolyTank to store water.                                                                                   
    • Using an agent to help you find the best house for you is Different than Using an agent in the US. There are some upfront fees that are required by agents in Ghana.  So, please do your do diligence and find out all these requirements before using an agent in Ghana.                      

    Applying for a Ghanaian visa

    Great and simple post on how to go about getting your Visa secured to Ghana

    visasnmore

    Ghanaians do not need a visa to visit Ghana. 🙂

    For non-Ghanaians who may like to visit Ghana, I have collected reports of the process from friends for you.

    Citizens of many countries have the option of getting a visa before departure or visa on arrival . It’s recommended to get your visa before travelling. Saves you a lot of time and stress.

    How to apply for a Ghanaian visa

    STEP 1

    Identify the Embassy of Ghana in your city or country.

    STEP 2

    Gather all necessary documents for your application. This usually includes a valid passport, hotel and flight reservation, invitation letter (if invited by someone in Ghana), passport picture and application fee. A complete list of required documents can be found on the Ghanaian Embassy website in your country.

    STEP 3

    Attend the interview in person or post your application to the Ghanaian embassy. When submitting your application…

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    Basic Forms Of Transportation In Ghana

    Hey Guys!,

    Today we will be going over a few of the different forms transportations offered here in Ghana. When first coming to Ghana you will most certainly realise that getting around by vehicle is slightly different from America or whatever country in which you come from. There a 3 basic forms of transport here. I will be showing you the 3 main means of transport here in Ghana starting at the cheapest one to use, moving to the quickest and last but not least the best form. So without further ado let’s find out what they are!

    1. Tro Tro: Here in Ghana catching the Tro Tro is going to be the cheapest form of transportation. Tro Tro’s are built to accommodate anywhere from 15 -20 people depending on the size of the Vehicle and the amount of seats. I will warn you that although taking the Tro Tro is the cheapest route it requires you to rely on your memory alot. Here in Ghana you’ll find a Tro Tro just about every where, with a mate constantly yelling the destination of the Tro Tro out the window while tapping one arm on the side of the vehicle. If one of them is shouting the route you want to go just say yes and they’ll stop for you. You can either catch one as your walking to your destination or you can catch one at the Tro Tro stations they have in most major towns. I also want to let you know that although it’s the cheapest form of transportation riding a Tro Tro is a time investment.
    2. Taxi: Catching a Taxi is the quickest form of Transportation in my experience. You can get one by waiting on the side of the road and signaling for one, calling for one if you have their number already, or you can walk to the taxi hubs they have around most towns in Ghana. I also want to point out that there are two forms transport using  A taxi, it can be two things, one being a Tro Tro Taxi, Meaning you’ll share it with several other people, two being a personal taxi meaning it’ll just be you taking the trip, it’s best to tell The Taxi driver when you get in what form of travel you prefer before you start moving. A quick tip, Using a Taxi in the form of a Tro Tro is cheaper than using it as a personal Taxi in some cases.   Also keep in mind that quick has a different meaning here than in America. Here the people are more layed back and don’t run on a tight schedule, so keep that mind that when I say quick, I don’t mean in a N.Y minute quick!
    3. Uber: Taking an Uber is the most efficient form of transport here in Ghana besides driving yourself. Uber is cheaper than taking a personal taxi because the rates are already predetermined. Something to keep in mind: At this time Uber only services the greater Accra area.

    3 Things To Know Stepping Off The Plane

    Hey Guys,

    Today I’m going to share three things to know before coming to Ghana. Coming to a new country and not having anyone to be your guide can get rather frustrating and can even cause you to give up and catch the next flight back home. So I’m here to help you out before you buy the ticket and give up on seeing and experiencing the world of Ghana. So let’s get started!

    1.  Currency: It’s important to have your countries currency on you. When you get off the plane and get through immigration you’ll     need to quickly exachange your currency for the Ghanaian cedi. You will need them for taxi/trotro fare, food, housing, ect. So you will have to make sure to have some cash on you to exchange. Its best to have 20/50/100 in your currency. If you have 1/5/10 they’ll charge you more for the exchange. And DON’T bring coinage they won’t except it.
    2. Transportation: When you finally get out of the airport I’m sure   you will be tired and ready to rest. You’ll need to catch a Taxi or take an Uber. Please understand that most services in Ghana require Cedis Ghana Cash (NO credit cards or checks). It’s important to know in advance where you want to go. Because you won’t be able to look it up on your phone because you will not have service just coming into the country.
    3. Phone Service: When you first touch down in Ghana you will           immediately notice your phone will have no service. Now I know     on your first day coming you’ll be tired and will need the rest. But it’s important to make sure to get on a Ghana service. To do so         you’ll have to have an internationally unlocked phone. Then you’ll have to inquire around as to where you can get a Ghana chip/sim. The Accra mall in Ghana is very close to the airport, this is one place you can acquire a Ghana sim card for your phone service. Please Note that most carrier branded phones are not international unlocked. You will have great frustration trying to use an international sim card with those phones. I Highly recommend you get a INTERNATIONALLY unlocked gsm phone before coming to Ghana.

     

    Packing

    Hi Guys!,

    Today we will specifically be talking about Packing! Now most people actually dread this part and some get frustrated by the fact that they don’t know exactly what to pack and/or what they need to bring. With all that said i’m here to share a few things I learned so you aren’t blindsided and that you pack everything you’ll need to ensure you have a lovely stay in Ghana. So with our further ado, let’s get started!

    1. Clothes: First things first and the most obvious things to pack are clothes! Now although you may be swayed to the thinking that it’s africa it’s going to be hot, no need for Jeans, Jackets, scarves, ect it’s not true. Of course it’ll be “hot” in Ghana but they still have the four seasons. So when packing keep in mind that it’s best to pack a few pairs of jeans, two or three good durable light jackets, and one or two good scarves, it can get a little cold during the rainy season. Also it’s best to have a few pairs of Cargo shorts and jeans they WILL come in handy here.
    2. Shoes: Upon arrival you’ll be doing a good bit of walking. I know I don’t have to go on a long speech of how important footwear is. Just keep in mind there are dirt roads here with potholes,dips,ect. So pack your footwear accordingly. I would recommend you have at least 3 pairs of good running shoes. And one or two pairs of good work boots. Don’t forget to pack a couple of GOOD, durable, pairs socks!(That means no dollar store socks people! Also they will be good for the rainy season).
    3. Electronics: Coming to Ghana you will realize that their plugs are different and you’ll also find that you will need a few converters so you don’t mess up and kill the batteries on your laptops, phones,ect. I would also encourage you to invest in power banks, they will be very beneficial considering there are power outages in Ghana(Power outages can happen when it’s raining in or by your town, as well as if it’s raining in the town the the electric company is). Better yet it would be to your advantage to invest in solar powered power banks, it would serve you well to take advantage of the almost ever present sun in Ghana.

    3 Important Steps To Take Before Coming To Ghana

    Hey Guys,

    Today I’m going to share 3 very important steps you’ll have to take before coming to Ghana. Everyone talks about how their flight was and how great Ghana is. But most people don’t want to tell you the technical side to it. Of course most people are just excited about getting to Ghana and experiencing the culture. But let me tell you! It’s time to wake up and smell the roses because before getting to enjoy such luxuries there’s a time investing process that you must complete. So without further ado let’s get to it!

    1. Passport: The first step before coming to Ghana or any country for that matter is getting a passport.Although it may seem expensive at the time, getting a passport is a long term term investment. Also it may take some time to come in but be patient it’s going to be your first ticket and step to getting out of the country. Without a passport you can’t get a visa. If you are in the US you can acquire your passport via the USPS.
    2. Visa: Getting your Visa is one of the most if not most important step to securing your visit to Ghana.Besides getting your ticket getting your visa will be one of the most expensive investments. What I have found to be one of the most efficient and safest ways to acquiring your visa would be to go through Ghanavisahouston.com. This is a Ghana embassy in Houston, they have great customer service and they will monitor your visa process from start to finish. They offer a 24 hour turn around time on your visa. You can also get your Visa application from their site.
    3. Housing: Securing a place to stay is also an important step to visiting or moving to Ghana. After securing your visa I would suggest if you don’t have family or friends to stay with that you immediately start looking for a hotel or hostel to stay in.One of the best places to find the best hotel for you is Hostelworld.com. Hostels are cheaper than hotels and they offer you a chance to interact better with the natives and popular sites of Ghana. You will also meet other foreigners who prefer this type of setting because it’s cheaper and allows you to get acquainted with the culture faster. I have used their services and once I arrived in ghana, going through immigration and catching a taxi I was able to get my room key upon arrival. I have found their services are quite efficient and the transition was smooth after making my booking. This site also offers rating from other travelers to help you better choose the best hostel for you.