Expats with little knowledge of this West African country may be quick to assume life in Lagos or Abuja is provincial and therefore affordable. In actuality, Nigeria’s two largest urban centres are ranked as two of the most expensive destinations in the world.
Rural areas and smaller urban centres in Nigeria levy a far less expensive lease on life, but the majority of expats are concentrated in these two aforementioned locales, if not in one of the oil-rich and isolated southern Niger Delta states.
Many may wonder how an African country often reprimanded for its high levels of poverty, crime and corruption can beat out global powerhouses like Berlin and Barcelona in cost of living calculations. The answers lie in the oil boom of the 1970s, which allowed economic expansion and population growth to explode and mushroom. As a result, private investment in luxuries and amenities catering for businesses and foreigners skyrocketed and prices followed.
Cost of housing in Nigeria
Additionally, due to Nigeria’s peaking crime rates and devastatingly unreliable electricity supply, expats will also need to prepare to account for security costs and extra facility (generator) costs.
Cost of transport in Nigeria
Cost of education in Nigeria
Cost of living in Nigeria chart
Prices may vary across Nigeria, depending on product and service provider. The list below shows average prices in Nigerian Naira for Lagos in March 2016.
|Accommodation (monthly rent)|
|Furnished two-bedroom apartment||NGN 850,000|
|Furnished two-bedroom villa||NGN 1,500,000|
|Food and drink|
|Milk (1 litre)||NGN 415|
|Cheese (500g)||NGN 1,100|
|Eggs (12)||NGN 380|
|White bread||NGN 300|
|Rice (1kg)||NGN 390|
|1 packet of cigarettes (Marlboro)||NGN 200|
|City centre bus/train fare||NGN 150|
|Taxi rate per kilometre||NGN 300|
|Big Mac Meal||NGN 1,600|
|Coca-Cola (330ml)||NGN 140|
|Bottle of beer||NGN 450|
|Three-course meal at a mid-range restaurant||NGN 6,000|
|Uncapped ADSL Internet (per month)||NGN 12,000|
|Electricity (average per month for standard household)||NGN 20,000|