What You Need to Know about Nigeria Visas
If you are planning to visit or immigrate to Nigeria, you will of course need a Nigerian visa. It is a definite must-have in your passport before you can stay in the country for any length of time. You may obtain this travel seal from the Nigerian embassy or consulate in your country.
Depending on your purpose, you may apply for any one of the following visa types:
Tourist visa- If you are thinking of visiting the country to enjoy its wonders and tour amazing cities and towns, this is the type of visa you must apply for. It usually allows you a three months stay in the country; however, you are not allowed to participate in any form of employment during this time period.
Business visa- This type of visa can be issued for single or double entry. If you would like to live in the country temporarily due to business activities but not employment, apply for this type. It allows you to enter the country to attend conferences or meetings, or to negotiate business deals. The initial 90-day time period can be extended upon application.
Work visa- Applying for a Nigerian work visa is an employer-led process, and the Nigerian company must confirm that it has a vacancy to offer, and provide the full details of the job. A precursor to the work visa is the STR or subject to regularization visa. The STR visa allows you to stay for 90 days, during which an application must be submitted in order to make you “regularized.” You can then have a work permit.
Subject To Regularization or STR visa- This type of visa allows you into the country for a short period of time, as you apply to be “regularized,” which, in turn, allows you to stay and work longer in the country.
Temporary work visa- This type of visa is issued to foreigners who enter Nigeria to do services for a prearranged period such as account auditing, equipment repair, research, or installation work. It is also an employer-led process and is valid initially for three months.
Diplomatic or official visa- Members of the diplomatic communities or government officials are issued this type of visa.
Student visa- Scholars, foreign exchange students, master or doctorate degree students, and other members of the academic institution can acquire this type of visa to enter the country.
Transit visa- This type of visa is granted to foreigners who want to stay in Nigeria intransit to their destination.
Regardless of the type of visa you are applying for, the requirements you will need to submit include a valid passport, evidence of sufficient funds to cover your stay, your current vaccination certificate or yellow card, completed visa application form, and an interview when necessary.
For tourist and transit visas, there are additional requirements such as copies of your return ticket and flight itinerary, certified hotel reservation statements, contract of employment, or recent pay slip or bank statements from your home country, as well as a letter of invitation or responsibility from Nigerian organizations or individuals.
For business and student visas, you must also furnish the following documents: copies of return ticket, invitation letter from business organization or company indicating the reason for the trip, an acceptance and invitation letter from the academic institution you will be studying at, and a copy of your identification card, with a letter from your current institution.
For the temporary work permit, you will need an approval from the Nigerian government for the visa, an invitation letter from the company in Nigeria which must state the reason why you are entering the country, and a sponsorship letter from your employer.
For the STR visa, additional documents needed include certified copies of expatriate quota approval from Nigeria, or approval for STR from Nigeria, letter of employment, letter of acceptance, certified and legalized copies of all certificates and credentials, copies of marriage certificate and birth certificate, if you have a child.
You may apply for Nigerian visa on the Internet. Some Nigerian embassies and consulates have made their services available online in some countries. You can check with your embassy first to save time, rather than personally going to the embassy to get application forms and then returning to submit the required documents. In case you don’t know, Nigeria is 10th on the list of Top 10 countries with greatest oil reserves.