Travel tips: How to travel on a budget to Nigeria

Regarded by many as one of the most expensive places to visit in Africa. It is safe to say that with proper planning and discipline, you can have the vacation of a lifetime during your visit to Nigeria, the giant of Africa.

Travel tips: How to travel on a budget to Nigeria

The city of Lagos, the major industrial hub of Nigeria and Abuja, the capital city are perceived as expensive places to visit when travelling to Nigeria. However, you wouldn’t want to miss out as these cities are the entertainment and tourism capital of the country.

A list of the top 5 budget travel tips on how to spend less and get the best accommodation in Nigeria during your visit has been put together to help you keep your finances in check while ensuring you still enjoy a great time in town.

  • Money Logistics:

The local currency in Nigeria is called the Naira.  The currency works out to be about 450 Naira per USD.  You can change CFA, USD, Euros and British pounds easily. The Hausa money changers (popularly called Mallam) can easily be found around town or close to a mosque, they are reliable and you shouldn’t have any problem with them.

It is advisable to use mainly cash and cards as bringing traveller’s cheque book to Nigeria is a waste of time. Several banks and of ATMs are also available in Nigeria, you shouldn’t have any problem getting cash out as most cities have a reliable banking system.

  • Transport:

The transportation network system in Lagos is greatly improved. For tourists who would love to mingle with the locals, you can hitch the famous BRT ride or Lag Buses, a public transport system known to cover various areas in the city. It is one of the most affordable and easiest way to move around town. Local cab drivers are known for unnecessarily raising cab fares when they figure out you are new in town. Hence, it is better to use Uber service, as you are assured of comfort and speed at surprisingly low rates.

  • Accommodation:

Getting a place to stay during your trip to any part of Nigeria has just become easier. You can enjoy great deals on various classes of accommodation to suit your budget type. Check out hotel portals like Jumia Travel to get the best deals. You can pre book even before arrival in town. Look through the list of affordable hotels in Abuja and several other cities to get great deals and offer.

  • Food:

A number of hotels offer complimentary breakfast options. Be smart when making a choice about the right place to stay, as some of the restaurants at many hotels in Lagos or Abuja boast of great meal options at reasonable cost. There is an assortment of street meals you would love and they are ridiculously low priced; roasted plantain and groundnut, roasted yam served with sauce, suya, fried yam and potatoes, akara (bean balls), noodles and egg.

  • Activities:

You can visit the popular Ikeja city mall to shop, see a movie at Silverbird cinema, Leisure Mall or Ozone Cinema. Free popcorn and drinks are available on selected days of the week. Some beaches in Lagos are open the public at no cost, visit the Lekki Beach to have a picnic with your family or check out others like the Atican Beach Resort or Oniru to enjoy the leisure life in Lagos.

Jabi Lake, the Arts and Crafts Village in Abuja, Abuja Wonderland & Park and the Abuja Zoological Park in Asokoro District are some the places you can also visit during your next trip to Nigeria, if you are visiting Lagos or Abuja.

A number of tourist centres are spread across Nigeria, the Obudu Mountain Resort in Calabar, Ikogosi Warm Spring, Osun Sacred Groove, Oguta Lake, Old Oyo National Park are some of the places you can check out depending on your location in the country upon arrival.


Written by: Mariam Banwo Barry

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