Summary

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The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) advise against all travel to:

  • Borno State
  • Yobe State
  • Adamawa State
  • Gombe State
  • Kaduna State
  • Katsina State
  • Zamfara state
  • riverine areas of Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Cross River States

The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to:

  • Bauchi State
  • Kano State
  • Jigawa State
  • Niger State
  • Sokoto State
  • Kogi State
  • within 20km of the border with Niger in Kebbi State
  • Abia State
  • non-riverine areas of Delta, Bayelsa and Rivers States

COVID-19 entry restrictions for Nigeria

Before you travel, check the ‘Entry requirements’ section for Nigeria’s current entry restrictions and requirements. These may change with little warning. Monitor this advice for the latest updates and stay in contact with your travel provider.

Returning to the UK

Check what you must do to enter England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.

If you’re planning travel to Nigeria, find out what you need to know about coronavirus there in the Coronavirus section.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

For information about COVID-19 vaccines, see the Coronavirus page.

Events to mark the one year anniversary of #EndSARS protests are likely to take place nationally, week commencing 18 October. There may be protests and a heightened security presence in major cities such as Lagos and Abuja. In parallel, the high profile trial date of a separatist leader is also scheduled for 21 October in Abuja. There may be additional protests and a heightened security presence in Abuja and in the South East for this reason. In all areas affected, you should monitor local media, and avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings.

From 3 September 2021, the Nigerian Commission mandated for all telecommunication operators in Nigeria to stop extending services to Zamfara State. This includes a suspension of all mobile telecommunications including WiFi. A number of other state governments, including Kaduna, Katsina, Sokoto, Kebbi and Niger have also implemented a partial shutdown of telecom services. See more information under ‘Northern Nigeria’ in the Safety and security page.

Since 9 August, there has been an increase in protests and demonstrations in the South East region of Nigeria. Protests, including “Stay at Home” protests, are likely during October in the South East region. There have been reports of violence during Stay at Home protests previously. You should monitor local media, avoid any demonstrations or large gatherings and follow any instructions from local police and security forces.

There have been a number of attacks and targeted killings in the South East and South South regions of Nigeria, including in the states of Akwa Ibom, Rivers, Imo, Abia, Anambra, Delta, Edo and Ebonyi. Some of these attacks have been on isolated roads and in remote locations, but there is a chance that they could occur in metropolitan areas. There is also a heightened risk of indiscriminate attacks on police and security infrastructure, which may inadvertently affect bystanders. A number of states have imposed curfews. Travelers to these regions are advised to exercise caution if travelling in remote areas at night and follow local news and information outlets for further information, including on local curfews.

The Nigerian police launched ‘Operation Restore Peace’ on 19 May to deal with the recent increase in insecurity in South South and South Eastern states. This may lead to an enhanced security presence on the ground. There is no indication as to how long this operation will last. You should exercise caution whilst travelling in the region.

On 5 April, Owerri prison in Imo State was attacked. Reports suggest over 1,800 prisoners escaped. You should be extra vigilant if in the area.

The Nigerian High Commission have announced the resumption of all Immigration Services from 13 April. You should continue to monitor their website for further announcements.

On 15 December 2020 the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) announced that mobile SIMs must be linked to the Nigerian Identification Number (NIN) of the SIM user. This applies to all residents including foreign nationals. You are advised to seek guidance on compliance from your network operator.

From 2 July 2021 there is no entry permitted for any non-Nigerians/non holders of permanent residence permits who have visited Brazil, Turkey or South Africa in the 14 days preceding travel to Nigeria. This does not apply to transit passengers.

Since January 2018, the Islamic Movement of Nigeria (IMN) has protested regularly in central Abuja and other cities. These protests, particularly in Abuja, have the potential to turn violent. See Local travel.

During October 2020, there were a number of large-scale protests (known as #EndSARS protests) in Abuja, Lagos and other locations across Nigeria. Strikes over workers’ rights in Kaduna State started on 17 May 2021. Protests have occurred and disruptions to transport and utilities have been reported. See Safety and Security

There is a daily nationwide night-time curfew between 12 am and 4 am. Some local authorities have imposed other restrictions, including local curfews which may be announced at short notice. You should monitor local media and follow the advice of the local authorities, and continue to exercise caution.

Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Nigeria. Most attacks are conducted by Boko Haram or Islamic State West Africa (ISWA) and occur in Borno, Yobe and Adamawa States in the North East. The groups have previously shown intent and capability to conduct kidnaps in Nigeria. Foreign nationals, including humanitarian workers, are likely targets for kidnap. Humanitarian hubs and humanitarian workers have been targeted during attacks in the North East, including Monguno, Borno State on 13 June 2020. There have also been significant attacks in Gombe, Kano, Kaduna, Jos and Bauchi States and in the Federal capital, Abuja. Further attacks are likely. Attacks could be indiscriminate and could affect western interests as well as places visited by tourists. You should avoid places where crowds gather, including political meetings, religious gatherings and places of worship, markets, shopping malls, hotels, bars, restaurants, transport hubs and camps for displaced people. See Terrorism

The al Qaeda-linked terrorist group Jamaat al Ansar al Muslimeen fi Bilad al Sudan, better known as Ansaru, claims to have killed at least 6 people, kidnapped dozens, and destroyed several vehicles during an ambush along the Kaduna-Zaira highway in Kaduna State in mid-January 2020. If you decide to travel to Kaduna State, you should avoid regular patterns of travel or movement, and aim to only travel during daylight hours. 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 ideological, financial or political gain. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the risk of kidnap increases after dark. The security environment in the North East has deteriorated since 2018 and there is a heightened risk of kidnap. Kidnaps in the North East have included humanitarian and private sector workers. There are also 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, extremist groups operate in some northern and middle belt states including Bauchi, Gombe, Kano, Kogi, Kaduna, Niger and Adamawa States. If you’re working or travelling in these States then you should be aware of the risk of terrorist kidnapping. See Terrorist kidnaps and Criminal kidnaps

Before considering travel to areas to which the FCDO advise against all or all but essential travel you should take professional security advice. Be vigilant at all times and keep others informed of your travel plans. 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. Consular support is offered in Nigeria although limited in areas where the FCDO has existing advice against all travel and all but essential travel (as set out above).

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.

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.