The German embassy has introduced new visa application procedures in view of expected high demand from Ghanaians wanting to attend the football world cup in Germany, which begins in June.

Four-times African Cup of Nations winner, the Ghana Black Stars are making their first appearance in the football world cup in over 40 years. Their first round matches will be against Italy (12 June), the Czech Republic (17 June) and the United States (22 June).

Under the new visa system, applications for short-term visas to Germany must now be submitted to a new visa reception centre located at 19 Second Crescent, Asylum Down, a five-minute drive from the existing embassy visa section in North Ridge. Once their documents have been checked applicants are given an appointment for a personal interview at the German embassy. Passports and visas are then returned to their holders at the visa reception centre.

The reception centre is open Monday-Friday 07.30-15.00 and is operated by VFS Ghana Private Limited, which collects a $15 service charge plus VAT (or its equivalent in cedis) for its services. The visa fee of 35 remains unchanged.

For further information about the new visa application procedure, including full details of the documents required, contact the visa reception centre call service tel. +233 (0) 21 229275, e-mail info@vfs-germany.com.gh or log on to the embassy website www.accra.diplo.de.