The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to:
- Borno State
- Yobe State
- Adamawa State
- Gombe State
- riverine areas of Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Cross River States
- within 20km of the border with Niger in Zamfara State
The FCO advise against all but essential travel to:
- Bauchi State
- Zamfara State
- Kano State
- Kaduna State
- Jigawa State
- Katsina State
- Kogi State
- within 20km of the border with Niger in Sokoto and Kebbi States
- non-riverine areas of Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers State
- Abia State
In 2018, the holy month of Ramadan is expected to start on 15 May and finish on 14 June. Dates may vary. See Travelling during Ramadan. There’s a heightened risk of violent crime and terrorist attack during religious festivals and holidays. See Terrorism.
An outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in May 2018 could result in some additional checks taking place at international airports in Nigeria. This is a standard precautionary measure and not a cause for alarm. There are no direct flights to Nigeria from DRC, so these checks could be in place for any flight.
Protests in Abuja and other Nigerian cities are becoming increasingly frequent as presidential elections in February 2019 approach. Particularly, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) has been protesting daily in Abuja since 7 January. While protests are usually peaceful, there have been violent clashes between police and protestors. Reports suggest that on 16 April 2018 one person was killed and about 30 people were injured as police used water cannon, gunfire and gas to disperse protestors. Protests are likely to continue in Abuja, Jos, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina and Zaria. You should keep up to date with local developments, check local media and avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings. See Safety and Security Section.
Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Nigeria. Most attacks occur in the north east, particularly in Borno (including central Maiduguri and along access routes connecting the city to other major towns), Yobe, Adamawa and Gombe States. There have also been significant attacks in Kano, Kaduna, Jos and Bauchi States and in the Federal capital, Abuja.
You should avoid places where crowds gather, including religious gatherings and places of worship, markets, shopping malls, hotels, bars, restaurants, transport hubs and camps for displaced people. Attacks could be indiscriminate and could affect western interests as well as places visited by tourists. Besides Abuja, other major towns and cities remain particularly at risk, including Kano and Kaduna. See Terrorism
There’s a high threat of kidnap throughout Nigeria. Kidnaps can be motivated by criminality or terrorism, and could be carried out for financial or political gain. See Terrorism and Criminal Kidnaps.
A number of kidnappings, including of foreigners, took place in Kano city in April 2018. We advise against all but essential travel to Kano state. If you’re in or around Kano city, we recommend you take added precautions.
Recent terrorist kidnaps have occurred mostly in northern Nigeria, but could occur anywhere. There are reports that Boko Haram and Islamic State West Africa (ISWA) are continuing to actively plan to kidnap foreigners. As well as in north-east Nigeria, this is believed to include some northern and middle belt states including Bauchi, Gombe, Kano, Kaduna, Niger and Adamawa. If you’re working or travelling in areas where there is a Boko Haram or ISWA presence, especially in the north-east of Nigeria, you should be aware of the risk of terrorist kidnapping.
There is a high threat of criminal kidnap in the Niger Delta region and Kogi state.
You should be aware of your surroundings and avoid large crowds and public demonstrations as they can turn violent unexpectedly and at short notice. Follow news reports and be alert to developments. If you become aware of any nearby unrest or disturbances, you should leave the area immediately. Violent crime is common. See Crime
UK health authorities have classified Nigeria as having a risk of Zika virus transmission. For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.
Around 117,000 British nationals visit Nigeria each year. Most visits are trouble-free.
Before considering travel to areas to which the FCO advise against all or all but essential travel you should take professional security advice. Be vigilant at all times, keep others informed of your travel plans and vary your routines. If you’re working in Nigeria you should follow your employer’s security advice, make sure your accommodation is secure and review your security measures regularly. The level of consular assistance available to British nationals in areas to which the FCO advise against all or all but essential travel is limited.
Flash flooding can occur during the wet season (June to October). There is a greater risk from water-borne diseases during the rainy season. See Health
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.
Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. Make sure your policy covers you for the type of travel you’re proposing to undertake.