Travel & Tourism

10 Things to Know When Travelling to Nigeria

Travelling is a very a mode of exposure that enables you learn about other cultures or way of life. This could be within a country by moving from one state to another, or endeavour to go abroad.

As a foreigner, it’s quite scary travelling to a strange country. There is need to do research about the country in question.

Nigeria is located in West Africa. It is known as the most populous black nation in the World.  Nigeria has the population of about 180 million people in West Africa.

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10 Things to Know When Travelling to Nigeria
Travel to Nigeria – Photo Source:

The Country’s Capital is the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. There are three major ethnic groups, which are Igbo, Hausa and Yoruba.

The Country has other various ethnic groups and culture, seen mainly in the minority. In spite of the Country facing challenges of negative publicity, Nigerian Citizens are generally known to be very industrious, enterprising, hardworking, and friendly. When Travelling to Nigeria, there are things, individuals, must know:

1. Immunization

Ensure that you have taken your vaccine to protect you from diseases like Malaria, cholera, yellow fever, Lassa fever and Ebola.

It’s mandatory that you are cleared when issued a yellow card, which is an international Certificate of vaccination. It’s important you go to your nearest vaccination centres, where you can get the vaccination clearance, before travelling to Nigeria.

Never accept items or packages at the airport: It’s important not to accept items or packages, from a stranger asking you to take heading for Nigeria.

Such packages could be items banned in Nigeria and could get you in trouble with the customs or immigration authorities.

2. Be vigilant

Cities like Lagos, and Abuja have incident reports of crimes like robbery, kidnapping, against foreigners and nationals.

It advisable to move within these cities, during the day and not at night if possible. There is need to avoid isolated areas and remain in areas, where help can be easily assessable.

Most times, these cities are safe, but there is always need to be cautious and very aware of your immediate environment, always. If you are driving or simply a passenger, always keep your windows up and doors locked.

This is to avoid street hawkers, or pickpockets who might steal from the vehicles. Keeping your car windows up is for security reasons, while on traffic.

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3. There is need to also observe periods of holidays in case you need going to Banks or public office in Nigeria, or know when its official working hours, areas to venture safely both day and night.

4. Pay for Excessive Luggage

If you are travelling to Nigeria with excessive luggage, must be paid for. It’s important you try as much as possible not to carry too much otherwise, there will be money to be spent.

You shouldn’t have to already start to spend, when not already in Nigeria. Not carrying so much on you, is wise. Travel light.

5. Avoid Airport touts at the Airport

When you get to Nigeria, while leaving the airport will be faced with touts wanting to carry your luggage, for an approved fee.

There will be others maybe requesting for fees by attendants, at the Airport. Report any of these harassment to the Airport Authorities and don’t attempt to remove your money from wallet. Better be cautious than to be sorry.

Read Also: 10 Ways to Improve Tourism in Nigeria

6. Be Willing to Ask for Help

It’s very necessary to be courteous to the staff at the airport when asking for help. If you need assistance in seeking help such as luggage clearance, immigration clearance, seek help from relevant staff on duty.

Make sure you speak directly to them for aid. Please don’t forget to start your conversation with a simply greeting like good morning or afternoon etc.

7. You Can Arrange a pickup Car

As a foreigner, it is suitable to arrange a taxi that could be as a means of transport to your destination in Nigeria. If it is a taxi service, ensure that you take down the driver’s name and the license plate number of vehicle for easy identification and security reasons.

In Nigeria, there are now transport service like the Uber, which charges based on meter services, and is said to be very reliable.

If you have a local person in Nigeria, he or she could guide in providing transportation. Make sure that the transport fare is affordable, and that your comfort is of priority.

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8. Always carry your Luggage

Always carry your luggage, at all times at the airport. Due to the recent insecurity challenges, around the world, Airport Authorities, have been warned to discard unattended luggage. Be mindful of your things.

Another reason why is better to go along with your luggage, is that most pick up cars are not allowed to park near the Airport exit. You may need to leave the exit, to look for the means of transport suitable.

9. Book Your Hotel in Advance

It’s also advisable to book your Hotel in advance, if you intend to stay in a hotel in Nigeria. This booking can be done using internet services or by simply calling the hotel customer services.

Make sure that you have the receipt of booking printed out, before you travel. This is to avoid been stranded when coming to Nigeria.

Make sure you do adequate research of the Hotel you intend to book. Go for reputable and nice Hotel known for their quality service.

Don’t wait for to travel to Nigeria before looking for Hotel to book. This can be dangerous as you may get defrauded by touts, and not get the best quality of Hotel Accommodation. In order not to be stranded, book in advance!

10. Avoid troubled areas

Nigeria is faced with insecurity challenges which has resulted in religious, ethnic and tribal conflicts, which have led to destruction of properties and lives.

There is need to listen to information about such troubled areas, before you attempt to travel there. States like Lagos and Abuja are relatively safe from these ethnic and tribal violence, occurring in other areas. Most times, it is better to avoid those troubled States, all together.

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Nigeria is a very tropical country and has great climate that is an envy of tourists, when they visit. The Country is generally filled with nice places to visit.

However, in order to not have bad experiences of travelling to Nigeria, there is need for caution and to take the necessary measures, in making your visit to Nigeria, enjoyable and fruitful.

Key Words: Travelling, Nigeria, Immunization, Vigilant, Caution, Hotel, Luggage, Airport, Yellow Card, Pick Up Car, Taxi

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Cynthia Juwah-Ogboi

Cynthia Juwah-Ogboi is a Content Developer at InfoGuide Nigeria is a team of Resource Persons and Consultants led by Ifiokobong Ibanga. Page maintained by Ifiokobong Ibanga. If you need a personal assistance on this topic, kindly contact us.

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