The Brazil Embassy in Ghana says it is ready to handle the expected high visa application for the 2014 World Cup but has urged fans to begin their application process early to avoid the challenges often associated to such last minute rushes.
According to the embassy, a task force had been put in place to handle the about 3,200 visa applications likely to come from Ghana for the World Cup. While the task force has begun work, albeit without pressure at the moment, they expect the pressure to be more intense between March and May, when most fans would be concluding their travelling arrangements.
Madam Irene Vida Gala, the Brazil Ambassador to Ghana in an interview with the Daily Graphic, said her outfit was ready to attend to everyone who satisfied all the requirements for applying for a World Cup visa or tourist visa even during the world fiesta but it would be in the interest of both applicants and the embassy if the process was hastened. Madam Gala explained that as of last Friday, many tickets had been sold to fans who applied for them on the FIFA online ticketing sales and since they had been issued with their confirmation slips and had made air ticket flight bookings, as well as confirmed their accommodation bookings, they could go ahead and apply for the visa.
The second window for fans to apply for tickets closed last Friday and those who were unsuccessful or are yet to buy a ticket would have to wait till March 11, when the final window opens. However, the last phase for the ticket sales would be on first come, first served basis, thus fans who want to go to Brazil at all cost would have to hurry in placing their order when the FIFA window opens.
Madam Gala also indicated that by the process used by FIFA for the ticket sales, no tour operator in Ghana was chosen to sell tickets on behalf of football’s world governing body and said tour operators who were planning to organise trips for the World Cup were also required to book for the tickets for their clients online.
She, however, indicated that the embassy were liaising with interested tour operators to ensure that things was well ironed out so no one is disadvantaged. “The World Cup visas would be issued for free so we would want to give it out to those who will really make use of it. Otherwise, it will be waste of time and resources on both sides.”