All over the news, you hear stories of pretty much every bad thing ever known to man happening in Nigeria, and for many of us who are either living in Nigeria or wishing to travel there, safety is one of the things that should be of paramount concern. So I am putting this guide together to answer questions like: is it safe to travel to Nigeria now, is Nigeria dangerous, Is it safe for a white woman to travel to Nigeria, is it safe to travel to Nigeria alone, is Nigeria dangerous for tourists, is Nigeria safe for white tourists, how to stay safe in Nigeria, and so many interesting things about visiting Nigeria.
I’d like to point out before going really deep into this article that my opinion could have some sort of bias because I am a Nigerian who lives in Nigeria and who knows details about the country that many foreigners or organizations wouldn’t really know or be truthful about. So let’s begin with the main question of this article. Is it safe to travel to Nigeria now?
Is It Safe To Travel to Nigeria Now
Yes. It is relatively safe to travel to Nigeria now, but you will really need to stick to some travel guidelines so you can stay safe in the country, in cities like Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt, and many others. As many guides will advise you when you’re taking trips to any new place, try to move around during the day, try to get a local guide who you trust and who understands the city, try as much as possible to be modest, both in how you show off expensive gadgets and accessories and the types of dresses you wear.
Strictly speaking, the security situation in the country is a mess, which means you would likely not be able to call the police and have them respond. And even if you go to them with a report, they’ll probably ask to be tipped before they do their job.
In addition to the above suggestions, it’s recommended that you get a hotel in a safer area of the city you plan to stay, often in the capitals or in some of the big cities. So in Lagos, you should stay in a 3-5 star hotel in areas like Lekki, Ajah, Ikeja, and Victoria Island. These places have better safety records when compared to the outskirts of Lagos. The rule applies to pretty much all states in Nigeria.
Racism is close to non-existent in Nigeria; in fact, the people are probably going to treat you better as a foreigner. Just try to not move around the cities at night. Always return to your lodge before it gets dark.
Some places you should try as much as possible to avoid include states like Borno, Yobe, and Nothern Adamawa states. Terrorism is a big problem in those places, and the recent upsurge in killer herdsmen makes those places even more unsafe for travel. It’s even worse as the governors of those states are either justifying the actions of the terrorists or protecting them, meaning everyone there is just on their own.
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Bayelsa, Cross Rivers, Delta, and Rivers states, with the exception of PortHarcourt, have a high rate of crime, civil unrest, kidnapping, and maritime crime, so just as advised by the US Government, it’s really not safe to travel to those areas.
Places in western Nigeria, have a better record of safety, although rural areas of these states are seeing more cases of killer herdsmen attacking people, resulting in tribal conflicts, so you will want to be as safety conscious as possible when moving around these places. The suggestion we gave earlier will surely come in handy when visiting pretty much any part of the country.
Is Nigeria Dangerous For Tourists
NO, Nigeria is not dangerous for tourists. While there are issues with security and safety in general for everyone in Nigeria, it’s still relatively safe to travel and move around certain places in Nigeria. Always try to not move around when it’s dark, don’t move alone, and most importantly, try to move with a local who understands the area, and also try as much as possible to lodge in respected hotels in urban areas of the cities you lodge in.
Is It Safe For A White Woman And Male Tourists To Travel To Nigeria?
Yes, it is. Nigerians are helpful people, and racism is really not a problem. In fact, the average Nigerian might treat you better than he would treat a fellow Nigerian of the same tribe. So for the people you’ll meet on the streets, yes, it is safe for a white tourist to travel to Nigeria. It’s advisable, though, that you shouldn’t travel to some destinations in the north, as terrorism and banditry is a thing, while some places up south have issues like kidnapping.
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How To Stay Safe In Nigeria When Travelling To Nigeria From the USA and the UK
When you’re traveling to Nigeria from the USA and UK, and from pretty much anywhere in the world, there are a couple of safety tips to have in mind. These tips will come in handy whether you’re Nigerian by origin or not, whether you’re white or a person of color, and whether you’re going to Nigeria as a tourist or an expat.
- Try to move around only during the day
- Get a local guide who you trust and who understands the city
- Don’t travel alone
- Keep valuables out of sight as much as possible
- Get a hotel in a more safe area of the city you plan to stay, often in the capitals or in some of the big cities
- Avoid states like Borno, Yobe, and Nothern Adamawa states because of terrorism and banditry
- Avoid states like Bayelsa, Cross Rivers, Delta, and Rivers states, with the exception of PortHarcourt because of crime, civil unrest, kidnapping, and maritime crime
- Avoid getting into trouble as much as possible
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