Information about Abuja – essential information for undertaking business activities
|December 13, 2013||Posted by Vishal under Nigeria Business Visa||
A British national travelling to Abuja from the United Kingdom will need a Nigeria business visa attainable from the Nigerian Embassy London. Your passport will need at least six months before its expiry date.
Most Hotels in Abuja are geared towards the business traveller. The top hotel in Abuja is the Transcorp Hilton and can be found in the centre of the city. The hotel is huge with many dining options. It also has good internet access.
If you cannot get booked at the Hilton try the Sheraton Hotel which is located nearby and has good dining and internet facilities. A small hotel suitable for business people is the Protea and has Wi-Fi in all of the 28 rooms.
Nigeria uses British type three pin 13 amp plugs. You may find some hotels use the older round pin plugs no longer used in the UK.
Abuja Airport is better for transfers than Lagos. However, it is advisable to arrange transfer to your hotel in advance. Be sure to check the person greeting you has been sent from your hotel. Your hotel can arrange a taxi service for you and the prices are reasonable.
Most hotels will gladly accept credit and debit cards. It is advisable not to let your card out of sight as some transactions are with older machines which cannot be brought to the table.
It will be essential to let you provider know you are visiting Nigeria and the length of your stay. If you fail to tell your provider you card may be blocked from use early into your trip. American Express isn’t widely available and it would be better to use master card or visa for transactions.
It is prudent to carry a reasonable amount of cash in Nigeria as most day to day transactions, like restaurants, taxis and bars are with cash. Most currencies are accepted such as the Euro, Dollar and Pound. If your visit is short you may be able to survive without changing to the local currency the Naira. For longer stays you may need a certain amount of local cash.
ATMs are available throughout the city but for the sake of security it might be better to make withdrawals inside the bank rather than using a hole-in-the wall machine. Unfortunately fraud is still common in Nigerian cities.
When conducting business in Nigeria, people will expect you to have a Nigerian telephone number. This isn’t a problem if you travel with an unlocked mobile as you will be able to buy a local pay-as-you-go SIM card either from the airport or hotel. You needn’t worry about signal coverage as mobile telephone network is highly sophisticated in Nigeria. For international calls it is recommend using Skype or Google voice. Remember to set up a suitable account before leaving the UK
Is it Safe to Travel?
It is important to check the FCO (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) website to be aware of any safety issues before taking your business trip. Alternatively consult the Nigerian Embassy London.
Language will not be a problem as the official language in Nigeria is English and is used by most people. It may take awhile to get used to the inflection and initially it may be hard to understand people.
Suits and ties are common for business people in Nigeria. Women’s dress should be equally as formal.
Handshakes are the standard way to greet fellow business people. Ideally you should wait for your host to offer their hand first. It is common to be especially polite to older people.
This post was written by Vishal Mavadia, Business Director Visa Services London.