Nigeria Travel Advisory

Travel Advisory
June 16, 2021

Nigeria - Level 3: Reconsider Travel

O K E N H U T C

Reconsider travel to Nigeria due to crime, terrorism, civil unrest, kidnapping, and maritime crime. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 1 Travel Health Notice for Nigeria due to COVID-19, indicating a low level of COVID-19 in the country. Your risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing severe symptoms may be lower if you are fully vaccinated with an FDA authorized vaccine. Before planning any international travel, please review the CDC's specific recommendations for vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 related restrictions and conditions in Nigeria.

Do Not Travel to:

  • Borno, Yobe, and northern Adamawa states due to terrorism and kidnapping
  • Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, and Zamfara states due to kidnapping
  • Coastal areas of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, and Rivers states (with the exception of Port Harcourt) due to crime, kidnapping, and maritime crime

Country Summary: Violent crime – such as armed robbery, assault, carjacking, kidnapping, hostage taking, banditry, and rape – is common throughout the country. Kidnappings for ransom occur frequently, often targeting dual national citizens who have returned to Nigeria for a visit, as well as U.S. citizens with perceived wealth. Kidnapping gangs have also stopped victims on interstate roads.

Terrorists continue plotting and carrying out attacks in Nigeria, especially in the Northeast. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting shopping centers, malls, markets, hotels, places of worship, restaurants, bars, schools, government installations, transportation hubs, and other places where crowds gather. Terrorists are known to work with local gangs to expand their reach.

There is civil unrest and low-level armed militancy in parts of Southern Nigeria, especially in the Niger Delta region. Armed criminality, including kidnapping and maritime crime, is also pervasive in this region.

Violence can flare up between communities of farmers and herders in rural areas.

There is frequent maritime crime in the Gulf of Guinea.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in many areas of Nigeria due to security conditions.

Read the country information page. 

If you decide to travel to Nigeria:

  • See the U.S. Embassy's web page regarding COVID-19.  
  • Visit the CDC’s webpage on Travel and COVID-19.  
  • Carry proper identification, including a U.S. passport with a current Nigerian visa, if needed.
  • Use caution when walking or driving at night.
  • Keep a low profile.
  • Review travel routes and times to vary your predictability.
  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
  • Be extra vigilant when visiting banks or ATMs.
  • Monitor local media for breaking events, and be prepared to adjust your plans.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Stay alert in locations frequented by Westerners.
  • Avoid demonstrations and large political gatherings.
  • Review your personal security plans.
  • Have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.
  • Establish a “proof of life” protocol with your loved ones, so that if you are taken hostage, your loved ones know specific questions (and answers) to ask the hostage-takers to be sure that you are alive (and to rule out a hoax).
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Obtain comprehensive medical insurance that includes medical evacuation.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Reports for Nigeria. 
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist

Borno, Yobe, and Northern Adamawa states – Do Not Travel

The security situation in these states is fluid and unpredictable due to widespread terrorist activity, inter-communal violence, and kidnapping. Security operations to counter these threats may occur without warning.

Terrorist groups based in the Northeast routinely target humanitarian camps, security forces, churches, schools, mosques, government installations, educational institutions, entertainment venues, and road travelers. Approximately two million Nigerians have been displaced as a result of the violence in Northeast Nigeria. 

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Bauchi, Gombe, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, and Zamfara states – Do Not Travel

The security situation in these states is fluid and unpredictable due to widespread inter-communal violence and armed criminality, especially kidnapping and roadside banditry. Security operations to counter these threats may occur without warning. 

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Coastal areas of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, and Rivers states (with the exception of Port Harcourt) – Do Not Travel

Crime is rampant throughout Southern Nigeria, and there is a heightened risk of kidnapping and maritime crime, especially in the Gulf of Guinea. Violent civil unrest and armed militancy persist in these areas.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas

Last Update:  Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

Travel Advisory Levels

Information for Vaccinated Travelers

The CDC's latest guidance on international travel for vaccinated people can be found here.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Abuja
1075 Diplomatic Drive
Central District Area, Abuja
Nigeria
Telephone
+(234) (0) (9) 461-4328 (Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.)
Emergency
+(234) (0) (9) 461-4000
Fax
No Fax

Nigeria Map