Nigeria is a beacon to Africa, and it is perhaps the continent’s most fascinating destination to visit.
It is home to a diverse range of ethnic groups, languages, and cultures, as well as Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote.
Nigeria is often referred to as the “giant of Africa”, contributing vastly to Africa and the world’s development.
Until the early 2000s, when instabilities such as Boko Haram and kidnappings began to creep in, Nigeria was a popular tourist destination.
It is an open country that allows both locals and foreigners, particularly those from surrounding countries such as Chad, Ghana, Cameroon, and Niger, to freely trade in and out without having to pay taxes.
Tourists from all over the world are treated with extra consideration throughout their stay in the country. And they are met with a cultural exhibition, tribal relics, and designs in the people’s indigenous attires as a sign of welcome home or feel at ease.
The beauty of the country could be evidenced by the experience of popular American Rapper Cardi B who visited the country somewhere in 2020.
And comments from renowned world leaders such as Nelson Mandela, King Salman of Saudi Arabia, President Tayyib Erdogan of Turkey, former United States President – Barrack Obama among others, have shown the respect accorded to the country.
It goes thus to include comments from Artists such as Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Puff Daddy, Beyonce where they equally prioritize visiting Nigeria over any other African country.
One could deduce the fact above that Nigeria is a beautiful place and home to everyone irrespective of their color and origins.
That being said, instability has resulted in the classification of several regions as risky that foreigners may find difficult to access.
So, if you are visiting Nigeria for the first time or maybe revisiting again the former atmospheric condition might have changed due to an increase in Kidnappings, violent attacks among political groups, armed robbery, and carjacking.
As a result, this article could be thought of as a safety guide to traveling around Nigeria.
Guidelines and Travel Tips in Nigeria
1. Crime Guidelines for Land Travels: Prior to COVID19, Nigeria had been relatively calm, with few protests over police abuse in some states, which extended overtime to the country’s lockdowns.
But at present, all states in the country have witnessed multiple cases of killings caused by violent attacks occurring without any warning, and kidnapping has been equally prevalent in numerous regions including the most secured parts of the country.
These events mostly have foreigners as their targets. And most of these foreign victims are business individuals, humanitarian aid workers, tourists, and journalists. The reason is that these people have money.
To avoid becoming a victim, you must remain cautious at all times and in all places.
Armed groups have been reported targeting locations near international hotels in Abuja and Lagos avoids those places.
Follow the security recommendations set forth by your hosts, and avoid traveling by road at night or appearing in public gatherings at night.
Avoid wearing watches, jewelry, or carrying any expensive and unfamiliar items of sentimental value including plenty of money.
This is a time of heightened danger in the country and even citizens are scared, so avoid lingering and seek refuge promptly if in danger.
Terrorist groups in Northern Nigeria, militants in the Niger Delta, political agitators, and herders joined with kidnappers could launch an attack at any time.
If you become a victim, comply with their requests as soon as possible, because noncompliance or ineffectiveness to comply has been related to victims being seriously injured or executed.
2. Crime Guidelines for Air Travels: Traveling by plane is essential for safety, but it’s also important to keep track of which airlines are allowed to fly in and out of the country for security reasons.
The International Air Transport Association offers a list of airlines that have been audited and deemed to comply with a variety of operational safety requirements and best practices you can view them to see the one applicable to Nigeria.
Scams have also been reported as a result of making acquaintances while traveling by air. This scam comes in many forms such as friendship, romance, business ventures, and work or employment request that ignite from a conversation and usually poses a significant amount of financial risks to the victims.
To prevent becoming a victim of a scam, don’t strike up a conversation with strangers or participate in one with your seatmate.
Although not everyone in the country is bad to hang out with, how can you tell who is good and who is bad? Nigerians are among the most fascinating individuals to leave with, yet even so, 60% of the people you may meet on an airplane are illegitimate and unreal.
And they can be looking for a technique to entice you into them so they can take your money. Don’t be surprised if you end up being kidnapped from there.