Replies: 8 - Last Post: Apr 24, 2013 6:09 PM Last Post By: viaggero
Nov 14, 2012 11:32 AM
visaHi, i am visiting SL early next year, and will be travelling overland from Guinea. My question is, how do i obtain a visa. I have read a few comments on here saying that i should go to the visit sierra leone website, and they will arrange everthing. However, what exactly do they arrange. Do they arrange the actual visa or do i just print of something which i would then show to the border guard, and he will then put a visa in my passport. Bit confused here as you can tell. Thanks for any help here.
Nov 14, 2012 1:31 PM
1However, what exactly do they arrange.
Post #11 in this thread may help. There was a time when the owner of the website you quote posted in this forum but I can't find his posts now so perhaps his profile and posts were deleted by the mods (due to advertisement?).
Nov 14, 2012 11:07 PM
Nov 15, 2012 1:58 AM
3I picked up a Sierra Leone in Conakry a few years ago. The price was expensive (150 USD), but the procedure was straight-forward. I don't know what it's like nowadays, but if it was me, I'd much rather have a visa in my passport when I approached the Sierra Leone border than a print-out of an email...
Nov 15, 2012 5:11 AM
4Kerry and I used VSL in March when arriving by air, and everything worked perfectly. VSl send you by email a scanned copy of your receipt and the compelted visa form, which you print out and take with you to the airport. At the imigration desk in the airport, you hand this printed copy over and get a proper stamp in your passport.
I don't know how well the process works at a land border, but in the airport it was fine.
Nov 15, 2012 11:31 AM
5Thanks for all the replies. It sounds like it will be ok to turn up at the border and get in with the vsl email. However, i am wondering if getting the visa in Guinea might be cheaper.
Nov 18, 2012 12:18 AM
6I live here, rule number 1 in West Africa never assume anything and don't leave things to chance. Get the Visa in your passport before you get to the border.
It's nice to know that you can still do it by email but believe me if you turn up at the border with an email print out you are asking for trouble it may work it may not. You need to understand what is happening here in Guinea at the moment. we are expecting things to flare up, elections are in December there have been massive job losses with all the big players, RIO, BHPBilliton, Vale leaving the country and even the Chinese cannot strike a deal and the people are getting restless. When they do it goes into military rule. It is safe to get around through checkpoints and borders but you have to be prepared 110% because once the military takes over it is a different story...you need cash and lots of it if you don't have iron clad documents. Take it seriously, it isn't hard.
Nov 26, 2012 2:06 AM
7I mostly agree with GrantJ's advice, though I disagree with his logic. First of all, the security situation in Guinea is not relevant to what documents the Sierra Leone border officials will accept to grant entry into Sierra Leone. And secondly, if anything, a tense security situation in Guinea would be a good reason NOT to rely on getting the visa in Conakry, because Conakry will always have the highest tension of any region in Guinea, and if things are really bad you may want to completely avoid Conakry for your personal safety. So I would refine his advice to say, do what you need to do in order to get the SL visa before leaving your home country. SL normally issues visas valid for 1 year, so it won't expire even if you will be on the road in Africa for a while before entering SL. Having the visa in place early will even allow you to skip Guinea altogether if the situation warrants that, by flying to SL from Banjul, Dakar, Monrovia or Accra.
One final note: the document that VisitSierraLeone.org will provide is NOT a visa, it is a landing permit, valid for one single entry (at the same cost of a multiple entry visa).
Apr 24, 2013 6:09 PM
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