Cost of Living in Nigeria

Nigeria is a country in equatorial West Africa, and the continent’s most populous nation.

Though at times very dangerous, Nigeria, in general, is one of the better places to be an expat in Africa, only behind Kenya or South Africa.

Your expenses here will be determined by how extravagant or thrifty you choose to be.

Keep in mind that the country is currently experiencing a recession which means that the cost of living has gone up. This is especially true if you’re a fan of imported products, or shopping predominantly in grocery shops/supermarkets e.t.c.



In Nigeria, you can get a meal (like pressed chicken, suya, pepper soup) from a street vendor or a local restaurant for 3-5$. Of course, an expensive date at a fancy restaurant might amount up to 50$ for two people, including drinks. Keep in mind that, due to the current recession, imported beverages that are sold at bars or the usual hangout spots have doubled and in some instances tripled prices.

Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant) $ 1.38
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter) $ 0.83
Water (0.33 Liter) $ 0.24


Current food prices are roughly around 4-5$ for a larger tray of eggs (30 eggs), 3$ for around 5 pounds of potatoes and the same goes for a bucket of oranges. A large pineapple would be around 2-3$. Meat is a bit more, and most expats in Nigeria shop at Shoprite, a South African based grocery chain popular in this country.

Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter) $ 2.16
Loaf Bread (500g) $ 0.91
Eggs (12) $ 1.44


Traffic isn’t a problem within major cities in Nigeria, but traveling outside the city can be tiresome due to congestion in some areas (Nyanya in particular), and you can expect potholes, checkpoints, and other hazards. Gas/petrol is roughly 2$ per gallon. Due to the low price of gas, there are occasional shortages.

Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket $ 0.55
Monthly Pass $ 19.29
Gasoline $ 0.40


Utilities aren’t expensive in Nigeria. If you live in a larger apartment (of about 85m2) all basic utilities like electricity, cooling, water, gas and garbage services will cost you around 26$. You may experience occasional water or electric shortages though usually apartments for rent almost certainly include generators.

Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling) $ 26.55
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local $ 0.05
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) $ 38.85
Sports and leisure


Enjoying sports and fitness is always reserved for those who have some money to spare on these activities, and that’s why they’re always a bit more expensive. A membership at a gym or a fitness club in Nigeria is approximately around 34$. Going to the cinema isn’t too expensive, but with the low salaries in Nigeria – it isn’t cheap either – around 6$.

Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult $ 34.03
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $ 9.09
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release $ 5.51
Clothing and shoes


Shopping for clothes is ridiculously cheap in Nigeria, especially if you’re an expat coming from the western countries. Quality jeans like Levi’s will cost you even less than 20$, quality running shoes of brands like Nike cost around 50$, while simpler pieces of clothing for summer like short dresses and shirts cost around 25$! It’s not often that shirts cost more than jeans!

Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable) $ 19.36
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...) $ 25.20
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range) $ 51.33
Rent per month


Rent is really unusually expensive in a country like Nigeria. If you’re looking for an apartment in the center of any of the major Nigerian cities, that will cost you a whopping 700$. If you want to cut that a bit, you’ll have to opt for an apartment in the suburbs or the outskirts of these towns, and that will cost you around 500$.

Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center $ 754.64
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center $ 475.97
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center $ 2092.36

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Nigeria?

Rent is, without a doubt, the biggest expense for anyone in Nigeria.

While people most other countries in the world spend approximately the same amount of money on rent and food, this is not the case in Nigeria. Rent takes up almost 50% of the people’s salaries, while the other large 20% gets spent on food.

Other major expenses are transportation costs, utilities and restaurants.

If you’re traveling to Nigeria, around 500$ should cover your basic monthly expenses (food, social life, a bit of shopping and other expenses) even with the recession that is in effect right now.

Utilities (Monthly)
Sports & Leisure
Clothing & Shoes
Rent Per Month

Nigeria: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

Salaries are extremely low in Nigeria, especially taking into account how expensive the rent is.

Minimum wage in this country is only around 100$, which makes it virtually impossible to pay all expenses.

Average monthly net salary in Nigeria is also very low – only 200$, so people probably have a very hard time making ends meet.

With around 1000$ a month you can live like a king here – buying new clothes, eating out, traveling on vacations abroad twice or more a year, and still save money.

While many working Nigerians live on as little as 200-300$ a month, some live on far less.

Average Salary$ 206.90
Minimum Wage$ 115.9
Mortgage Interest Rate19.14%

Cost of Living by City in Nigeria

*Click the name of the city for more information.

City Cost of Living Index
Lagos 33.33

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