Expat guide to Nigeria, relocation, moving, education, healthcare



Nigeria has a growing number of expat communities, thanks to the thriving oil and gas industries that dot its coastline. Living as a foreigner in Nigeria may feel a little secluded as expats are grouped together in suburbs and housing complexes. But beyond the walls of apartment blocks, lies an exuberant country. Urban industries spring up in the major cities, but Nigeria is more than modern infrastructure; in the outskirts of the busy city, the African heritage if the country is still significant and should not be missed. If you’re stepping out to Nigeria, take a look at the info we’ve put together.


Expat Clubs

Federation of Muslim Women’s Associations in Nigeria

The Federation of Muslim Women’s Associations in Nigeria (FOMWAN) was established in October 1985 and registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission the same year. With a consultative status with the United Nations, FOMWAN is a non-profit and non-governmental civil society umbrella body for Muslim women associations in Nigeria. Today FOMWAN is in 34 states of the federation and has over 500 affiliate groups.

Address: FOMWAN National Headquarters Complex, 12 A. E. Ekukinam street, Utako district, Abuja

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.fomwan.org


Business and Professional Women

The International Federation of Business and Professional Women is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that has had Consultative Status with the United Nations through the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) since 1947. At present there are a total of twenty-one members serving as representatives of IFBPW at the United Nations and its subsidiary organs, specialized agencies and related organizations.

Address: No. 32, Port Harcourt Crescent, Off Gimbiya Street, Area 11, Garki, Abuja

Tel: 2348033109818

Website: www.bpw-nigeria.org


Edo State Women’s Association

Edo State Women Association (ESWA) is a registered British Charity established in 1991 by groups of women from the Nigerian Home Town Associations who came together with shared goals. With limited resources and vastly challenging and complicated issues ESWA focuses on key projects to improve the lives of mothers and children in Edo State, Nigeria. ESWA also support important projects in the UK (London) benefiting children from underprivileged backgrounds within the African community.

Address: 40 Country Home Motel Road, Off Sapele Road, Benin City, Edo State, Nigeria

Tel: (+234) 803 3037 358

Fax: (+234) 803 3037 358

Website: www.edowomen.org

International Schools 

American International School of Lagos

The American International School of Lagos, Nigeria, has established curriculum standards and learning outcomes in all content areas based on the US National and IBO Standards.

Curriculum: International Baccalaureate

Address: (+234-1) 461-0986, 461-0987, 461-0996, 461-0997

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.aislagos.org


Lekki British High School

At Lekki British High School, the curriculum offered is based on the English National Curriculum with reference made to the indigenous learning experiences. The school’s approach to education creates a solid base for future development through a culture of independent learning that challenges students to accept greater responsibility for their learning.

Curriculum: British

Address: Olubunmi Owa Street Off Admiralty Way, Lekki Phase 1 Lagos

Tel: +234 (0)1 761 7734

Website: lekkibritishschool.org


British International School

BIS is a multi-national, co-educational school offering a British style curriculum to students aged between 11 and 18 years. It serves both the Nigerian local community and expatriates looking for a British education within an international setting.


Address: 1 Landbridge Avenue, Oniru Private Estate, P.O. Box 75133, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

Tel: +234 (1) 774 8066, +234 (1) 270 6430 – 8

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.bisnigeria.org


Greenoak International School

Greenoak International School Port Harcourt is an International School. GIS has a total population of over 355 highly motivated students. Greenoak admits children aged 5 years to 16 years from various corners of the globe. The school operates a hybrid curriculum consisting of the innovative International Primary Curriculum (IPC), British/American Curricula and the Nigerian curriculum. This provides a balanced education aimed at producing truly intelligent, skilful, motivated, confident and morally sound children.

Curriculum: British, American

Address: 99, Tombia Road Extension, GRA Phase Three, Port Harcourt, Nigeria

Tel: +234(084)901054, +234(808)6737401

Website: greenoakinternational.org


Bethel International American School

Bethel AIS is a co-educational institution with full boarding facilities. Bethel AIS is located in the Good Samaritan Society Mission Village on a 40 acre piece of land 5km away from Fiditi and a 20 minute drive from Ibadan in Oyo State.

Curriculum: American

Address: KM 20 Oyo-Ibadan Road, Fiditi, Oyo State, Nigeria

Tel: +234 705 256 4901, +234 807 407 2621 , +234 802 378 7255, +234 810 109 8295

Email: [email protected], [email protected]

Website: bethelais.org


The Netherlands International School

The Netherlands International School Lagos (NISL) is a small-scale primary school in Victoria Island with a friendly atmosphere. NISL is located in a prime spot in the former Dutch Consulate residential compound in Lagos, Nigeria.

At NISL, children aged 4-12 are taught the Dutch, British and International Primary curriculum in Dutch and English languages.

Curriculum: British

Address: 13 A/B Walter Carrington Crescent, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

Tel: +234 813 86 484 89

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.nislagos.org

Local News in English

Nigerian Tribune

The Nigerian Tribune is the oldest surviving private newspaper in Nigeria. Established in November, 1949 by one of Africa's foremost nationalists, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Nigerian Tribune was structured, since inception, to cater for the interest of the common people.

Website: www.tribune.com.ng


AllAfrica – Nigeria

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. They publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons.

Website: allafrica.com/nigeria

Country Information 

Location: Africa

Capital City: Abuja

Other Important Cities: Lagos

Currency: Naira

Language: English

Calling Code: +234

Internet TLD: .ng

Electricity: Nigeria runs on 240V 50Hz. Electricity is provided by various organizations. Power outage is very common in the country. The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has a complete list: www.nercng.org/index.php/industry-operators/licensing-procedures/phcn-sucessor-companies


Emergency Numbers:   

Ambulance: 112

Fire: 112

Police: 112

Country Information


Embassy Information


Residents Visa and Work Permit information

Visitors are required to have a visa to enter and stay in Nigeria, unless they are from countries with visa exemptions. These are: Benin, Burkina Faso, Camerron, Cape Verde, Chad, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone and Togo. Visas can be obtained from a Nigerian embassy or consulate.

The types of visas available are: transit, direct transit, business, tourist, official/diplomatic, Subject to Regularization (STR), and temporary work permit.

A Subject to Regularization visa is required for expats taking up employment in Nigeria.

Documents required:
  • Valid passport with minimum of 6 months validity
  • Letter of employment
  • Expatriate quota approval
  • Credentials of the applicant
  • Duly completed form IMM 22
  • Curriculum Vitae or Resume
  • For chief executive officers (C.E.O) of corporate organizations, there is need for extract of the minutes of the Board's resolution

- Obtainable only from Nigerian Missions in the countries where applicants are domiciled for at least six (6) months

- From the Nigeria Immigration Service site; www.immigration.gov.ng/index.php?id=14

The US government has issued a travel warning for American expats:

The Department of State warns U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to Nigeria and recommends that U.S. citizens avoid all travel to Adamawa, Borno, and Yobe states because of the May 14, 2013 state of emergency proclamation for those three states by the Government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The security situation in the country remains fluid and unpredictable. The U.S. Department of State strongly urges U.S. citizens in Nigeria to keep personal safety and health in the forefront of their planning. This Travel Warning replaces the Travel Warning for Nigeria dated January 8, 2014.


The ability of the Mission to provide assistance to U.S. citizens remains severely limited. The Department continues to recommend against all but essential travel to the following states due to the risk of kidnappings, robberies, and other armed attacks: Adamawa, Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Kano, and Yobe States.  The Department also advises travelers to exercise additional caution while traveling in Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Delta, Edo, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, and Zamfara States.  Based on safety and security risk assessments, the Embassy maintains restrictions for travel by U.S. officials to those states listed above; officials must receive advance clearance by the U.S. Mission for any travel deemed as mission-essential. U.S. citizens should be aware that extremist groups could expand their operations beyond northern Nigeria to other areas of the country.

from US Passports and International Travel site: travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/alertswarnings/nigeria-travel-warning.html


The housing situation in the country can be a challenge, with quality and adequate supply shrinking. However, expat employees should know that Nigerian employers usually make the housing arrangements, and even own blocks of residential complexes for their staff. As an expat, this should be part of the contract.

Walled complexes, enclaves compounds are the common types of accommodation made available for foreigners. Certain suburbs would be designated for expats alone, which can be isolating. The state housing units is generally good, and at times even luxurious, with amenities like internet, 24 hour security and recreational facilities.

Expats communities in Nigeria are concentrated in the capital Abuja, and the commercial center, Lagos. In Abuja, foreigners will find that the cost of living is steep. The city is very urban, with commercial and government structures in place; traffic is hectic. Powercuts are also common.

In Lagos, expats reside on Ikoyi, Ikeja, Victoria Island and Apapa. The entire city is a network of islands. It is also a bustling city; crowded and loud. Expats in Victoria Island, at least those who are afforded it, live on some of the country’s expensive real estate properties. Foreigners here are made up of management professionals and those with bigger salaries. A lot of foreign embassies are also located in this area. Ikoyi is another island popular with expats. Corporations in the oil and gas industry house their staff in this area. Schools, country clubs and recreational facilities are also located in this island.

Apapa is a more economical choice for expats. Old colonial houses, and apartment complexes are available in this area. It’s a seaport, so security is tight. 

Driving License

Expats must apply for a Nigerian driving license; this is the only valid documentation to drive legally in the country. An international driving license is not recognized. Foreigners will have to go through the process, as with first time driving students, in an accredited driving school. The Nigerian Federal Road Safety Corps has a list of schools: www.frsc-dssp.org/handle?action=aidsr

The FRSC has outlined steps to obtain a license:

Step 1 - Attend training at an accredited driving school.

Step 2 - The driving school will then present you to the to Vehicle Inspection Officer (VIO) for a driving test.

Step 3 - Pass the driving test and obtain a certificate of proficiency from the VIO.

Step 4 - Complete the driver's licence application form at the Driver's Licence Centre (DLC).

Step 5 - Pay the licence fee online or at the Bank.

Step 6 - Present your application form to the Board of Internal Revenue (BIR) Officer and VIO at the DLC for endorsement.

Step 7 - Proceed to the FRSC Officer at the DLC for biometric data capture.

Step 8 - Obtain a temporary driver’s licence valid for 60 days.

Step 9 - Pick up original driver’s licence at the BIR Office after 60 days.

-          From Federal Road Safety Commission;


Health facilities in the country are limited and are below Western standards. Public healthcare is underfunded while private healthcare are adequate for routine treatments and check ups. Expats are advised to secure health insurance that can cover or reimburse medical treatments including medical evacuation.

Malaria, HIV and tuberculosis are prevailing problems in the country. Foreigners are urged to get precautionary vaccinations, including for the Hepatitis strains, typhoid, rubella and meningitis.

Insurance Companies


MSH International ASFE

For twenty years, ASFE has designed and managed international healthcare insurance solutions for all mobile individuals:
  • Expatriates living abroad alone or with their families,
  • Students, interns and young people with "Working Holiday Visas",
  • Self-employed persons or company employees,
  • Seniors.

Website: www.asfe-expat.com/index.php?a=en&b=asfe


Diamond Heliz Medical Assistance

Diamond Helix Medical Assistance Ltd is the leading medical consultancy firm in Nigeria. Since 2008, they have successfully built a reputation as the pioneer of medical assistance service in the country. Diamond Helix actively works to address the shortcomings of the healthcare sector by providing Continuing Medical Education and creating platforms for global healthcare deliberations while providing a strong doctoral referral base in Nigeria and abroad.

Address: Plot 8, Block 91, Iron Bar Street, Off Providence Street, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos

Tel: 01-4543424

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.diamondhelixmedical.com/


Cigna Global Health Options

Cigna Global Health Options specialise in providing expatriate health plans that are designed to give comprehensive overseas medical cover for people who are living and working abroad. They provide medical evacuation insurance cover.

Website: www.cignaglobal.com/




Primus International Super Speciality Hospital

Primus International Super Specialty Hospital is a state of the art multi specialty hospital conveniently located in Abuja, Nigeria. Primus International Super Specialty Hospital has been designed and constructed using some of the most advanced medical technology, available in the world. The hospital is located in a serene, well connected area of Karu Extention Abuja. The infrastructure of the hospital and the quiet environment are conducive to faster recovery, health and well being.

Website: primushospitalnigeria.com


Lagoon Hospital

Lagoon Hospital was first established in 1986 with Lagoon Hospital Apapa, now the flagship hospital, followed by Lagoon Hospital Ikeja and Lagoon Hospital Victoria Island. The Group has since added 2 new locations: Lagoon Clinics in Adeniyi Jones, Ikeja and Lagoon Specialist Suites in Victoria Island bringing a total of 5 locations to date. Lagoon Hospitals pioneer advanced medical care in Nigeria and are committed to the highest standards of professionalism and service. The hospitals are equipped to perform all forms of surgical procedures including those that are only possible at very few specialised hospitals in the United Kingdom and USA and they continue to invest in high quality specialty services.

Address: 8 Marine Road, Off Liverpool Road, Apapa, Lagos

Tel: 0700 524666 27272, 08191442246, 01-6283812-15, 01- 8707011

Website: www.lagoonhospitals.com


The Roding Mecial Centre

The Roding Medical is a 11-bed inpatient facility and a high dependency Unit with 2 beds with all rooms having en-suit facilities. There is a fully equipped operating theatre where both open and endoscopic procedures are performed.

Address: 29B Olabode George Street,

Off Ajose Adeogun Street,

Victoria Island,


Tel: +234-1-2716057


Email: [email protected]

Website: therodingmedicalcentreltd.com


Parklande Specialist

PARKLANDE  SPECIALIST HOSPITAL is  located at 13, Rasaq Balogun Street, off Adeniran Ogunsanya Street, Lagos. It has a functional and well equipped labour ward and an operating theatre capable of most major surgeries.

Facilities include Laparoscopy, diathermy machine, anaesthetic machine, Hysteroscopy, colposcopy. 

Address: 13 Rasaq Balogun street off Adeniran Ogunsanya Street Surulere.

Tel: 07045757512 

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.parklandespecialist.com



Reddington Multi-Specialist Hospital

The Reddington Multi-specialist Hospital, newly built on nine floors on the site of the previous renowned Cardiac Centre, provides fully comprehensive tertiary hospital solutions in all medical fields.

Address: 12, Idowu Martins Street (next to Mega Plaza),Victoria Island, Lagos

Tel: + 234 (0)1 262 1234, +234(0)1 271 5340 - 9 (10 Lines)

Email: [email protected]

Website: reddingtonhospital.com