Nigeria Travel Warning
Issued by U.S. Department of State
Feb 05, 2019
Reconsider travel to Nigeria due to elections, crime, terrorism, civil unrest, and piracy. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory
Do not travel to:
- Borno and Yobe States and northern Adamawa State due to terrorism
Federal general elections in Nigeria are scheduled for February 16, 2019, and the state elections for March 2, 2019. These election dates may be subject to change. The risk of violence is heightened during election periods, and in recent elections, some election-related demonstrations have resulted in violence. The Nigerian government may impose additional travel restrictions as the elections approach, sometimes without notice, which may affect travel plans. Expect additional police and military checkpoints and possible road blocks throughout the country during elections. Regular road travel is prohibited on election days, and airports and stores will be closed. Additionally, ISIS West Africa (ISIS-WA) and Boko Haram have both stated they plan to disrupt the upcoming 2019 elections by conducting attacks on Nigerian security forces and infrastructure, as well as places of gathering such as markets, hotels and, malls.
Violent crime, such as armed robbery, assault, carjacking, kidnapping, and rape is common throughout the country. Exercise extreme caution throughout the country due to the threat of indiscriminate violence.
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.
Sporadic violence occurs between communities of farmers and herders in rural areas, claiming hundreds of lives each year.
Avoid travel to the Gulf of Guinea due to the threat of piracy.
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 Safety and Security section on the country information page for Nigeria.
If you decide to travel to Nigeria:
- Carry proper identification, including a U.S. passport with a current Nigerian visa if needed.
- Exercise caution when walking or driving at night
- Review travel routes and times to vary your predictability
- Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.
- 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.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
- Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
- Review the Crime and Safety Reports for Nigeria.
- U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.
Borno and Yobe States and northern Adamawa State - Level 4: Do Not Travel
The security situation in northeast Nigeria is fluid and unpredictable, particularly in Borno and Yobe States and northern Adamawa State. Terrorist groups based in the Northeast target churches, schools, mosques, government installations, educational institutions, and entertainment venues. Approximately two million of Nigerians have been displaced as a result of the violence in northeast Nigeria.
Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with minor edits.