Thank you for your polite answers. I am impressed by your professionality in responding to my allegations. As Nigerians, we often come across as really aggressive and defensive but obviously the Gentleman in you did not take me up on that.
I am a Medical Doctor and a graduate of Tropical Diseases and I should warn you that some of these posts by CDC are outdated and left on their websites for far too long. I was always at loggerheads with my professors at UCL because they were teaching a lot of rubbish sometimes out of pure ignorance, sometimes, it was because of the need to defend a funding from MSF, WHO etc Suffice to say that I was not their Favourite student at the university.
It might interest you to know that we are our fiercest critics as Nigerians but get sensitive when Non- Nigerians tell us even the smallest of truths.
To be honest, I do agree with you on some of the issues you raised ( and you are such a good sport not to have wondered why I was having a go at you. I apologize if I was in any way offensive to you)
Truth be told, with the information Natalia has provided us with which has turned us into a debate team, I would tell her to forget it and just stay at home with her family!!!!! I would not let my daughter travel to such an unknown entity with a guy who is too busy to get her the answers she needs! Then she further mentions he Has already booked his flight? What kind of guy takes a girl thousands of miles round the worldand leaves her to worry and find out on her own how to be safe? I smell a very big Rat and think we should just fess up and tell her this is not the way to come to Nigeria.
That country is so volatile, everyday is a day when anything short of a coup can happen! What is the purpose of the recent Fuel scarcity? A change in Government like I mentioned is zero guarantee! All the Old corrupt individuals who should be locked up for life have since defected to the winning party.
A Republican would not become a Democrat because Barack Obama is now a two time president because for generations his family have believed in the Ideals that made them Republicans in the first place.
I don't want to go on, I get really passionate about how a Country with so much potential can be so deliberately self-destructive!!!!!
Natalia, as a woman like you, I would say an Absolute No! You don't have enough information to go to Nigeria! If you said Lagos, I could breathe a little easier but down south, I don't know and if anyone is being honest with you like many have said in their posts, you just don't come to Nigeria like you are bag packing to Australia. Please be safe.
luluzine @ #11... That's one of the most honest/accurate responses I've ever read on this forum.
It looks like there has been a lot of discussion on here about my possible trip to Nigeria. I apologize for not responding sooner. I decided to take a break from researching, and reading comments about Nigeria as I felt it was best to take a step back, and see how I really felt rather than panic, and get scared from the comments that I read online.
I read through the comments and will address them.
Sander - You are correct. I did read that the vaccination is good for 10 years but I also read that the vaccination is to be given at least 10 days before travel. "International regulations require proof of yellow fever vaccination for travel to and from certain countries. People who get vaccinated should be given an International Certificate of Vaccination. Also note that the vaccine is to be given at least 10 days before travel to an endemic area."
However, I'm guessing this is the minimum time frame, and I could get it 2-3 months before I depart, as you suggested.
I want to address the issue with my friend. He is a good and honest person. I trust him, and have no issues with my safety being with him or his family, even though I have never met them. My concern is more of visiting Nigeria with everything that has been said about it, and my medical concern with regards to malaria, and yellow fever. I have met some of his friends who visited him from Nigeria. They were lovely people, and were kind. An elderly lady friend also from Ontario (Caucasian, a young 86 at the time) visited Nigeria twice with my friend. She visited his family, and my friend showed her around. She also helped out at one of the local schools. She visited for about 10 days. She is now 91 years old. She had a good time, and enjoyed her visit at the time. I have only met her a few times, and she is lovely and very quick witted! I would like to speak to her more about her experience, and hope to soon.
I can understand and appreciate how berner256 feels with regards to my visiting Nigeria. I did state that I wasn't able to speak to my friend at the time as he was busy, and there was a bit of frustration on my part. However, I also want to say that I have been going through some personal things in my life and at times, I do get easily frustrated and upset if I don't hear back from friends right away. I am single and it gets lonely at times. I'm also in a profession that I'm not happy with so my feelings and emotions can get the best of me. I also want to mention that my friend didn't know that I wanted to go with him to Nigeria. We were texting one day, and I mentioned something about Nigeria being really sunny and warm, and I excitedly mentioned that I was going to go with him one day to which he replied "when?!" I asked when he was going and he told me his dates. I then asked if he had booked his trip, to which he replied that he did. I stated that I was thinking of going with him, and he replied, "that would be awesome" and "you will love it and have a wonderful time." In that moment, I was excited, and stated that I wanted to go. However, as you may all have experienced before, when you get excited about something that you want to do or buy but later have time to think and realize that it's not as simple as it may seem, you start to look at the bigger picture. And this is what happened with me. I didn't anticipate going to Nigeria. I thought about it, and in my mind it felt like a wonderful trip but when I sat back and realized that this was Nigeria, and not Europe, I began to understand that it was a bit more serious due to what has been going on in Nigeria. Plus, I would need to get malaria tablets, yellow fever vaccination and be concerned about some of the other issues that Nigeria is faced with.
I did talk to my friend about the trip and he told me that if I'm this concerned about going than to wait as he will be going again in December 2016. He didn't realize that I wanted to go, and now that he knows, he told me that he will be visiting Nigeria once a year to visit family/friends so there will be other opportunities for me to visit. He told me that we would be visiting his family first, and staying with them in Oko, and then going to his friends in Enugu although he would get me a hotel if I didn't feel comfortable. He does understand my worries and concerns, and wants me to feel comfortable if I decide to go. However, he assured me that where he and his family is from, it is safe as he is from the southeast. He is aware of the corruption as he grew up with this, and knows how to deal with it but did reassure me that he or one of his family members would always be with me if I decide to go for a walk, etc. I know about some of it as it existed in Italy, and experienced it in some of the towns especially with taxi drivers in Naples. He also told me that Nigerians are very welcoming, friendly and lovely people, and would make me feel welcome, and treat me well. This is not to say that I'm still not concerned, or nervous because I am. I did some research on malaria, and the types of tablets that one has to take, and it was a little overwhelming. I do get easily paranoid, which can cause me more stress. I believe I got this from my parents as I am the oldest, and they were very overprotective especially my father. My father is European, and very old school. My mom watches a lot of news, which doesn't help. I understand where they are coming from but I don't always want to panic and be scared about things as this can be crippling.
I want to mention that I went to Mexico a few years ago as a solo traveller when there was so much talk about killings and murdering of Canadians, and drug cartels. I did my research, asked questions, and chose a place that was safe. I went to Puerto Morelos & Playa Del Carmen. I felt safe, and had a good time overall. The only issue I had was dealing with timeshare agents (It was my first and last time. I will never sign up to go through that again), and the owner from one of the B&B that I stayed at. I didn't feel comfortable around her. She was disrespectful and rude towards me, and it affected that part of my trip. I was nervous about telling my mom but once I did, I showed her the research I did, and reassured her that I would be safe. I kept in touch with my family while I was there, and made it home safely. However, I know that going to Nigeria is a different experience, and there will be a lot of strong opinions from people, which is understandable.
You're right luluzine. I was feeling overwhelmed, and scared with all the comments that I was reading not just on here but even from Googling information. As I stated above, I decided to take a break for the week so that I could digest some of it, and just breathe.
It's comforting and reassuring when I read wonderful stories about Nigeria, and it's people. I'm more sensitive about things by nature so when I read "negative" information, it stays with me and that's all I worry or focus on. However, I don't want it to be that way. I have been trying to read more positive stories about peoples' experience with traveling to Nigeria. I did read two ladies' experience who were both traveling there to met up with boyfriends. These young women expressed their concern for traveling to Nigeria based on what they read online, and from the information they received on the forum. Some people told them that they would die, be killed, or catch a disease or illness and that their boyfriends were scamming them, and trying to get money out of them. It was unbelievable what I was reading. However, these ladies went to Nigeria, and later briefly shared their experience on the forum, and both said that they had a wonderful time in Nigeria, and that their boyfriends' family made them feel very welcome.
I also read a story of a US citizen who currently lives in Ottawa, and traveled to Nigeria. He was also concerned, and felt nervous. He then shared his story and said that he felt silly for having felt so nervous as Nigerians were so warm and welcoming. He mentioned that he didn't have any problems or issues. He was also fortunate not to get sick. He said that his experience was a positive one even though others may have encountered some issues.
Just to answer some more of your questions. I'm from Ontario, Canada and I'm 42 years old. My friend is the same age. I'm not in a romantic relationship with my friend although I do like him but I am only friends with him. He wants to maintain a friendship with me although I sometimes wish things could been different. He has made it clear that he wants to move back to Nigeria in 10 years and I respect that. He wants me to meet someone, and be happy.
I don't think that my friend's family is financially rich although I don't know. I never asked. To tell you the truth, I never thought about it, and don't feel comfortable asking.
I still don't know what to do. After reading comments from luluzine and berner256, I'm scared to go but I think most of your feelings were based on my friend not responding to me at the time?
[ Edit: Edited on 23-May-2015, at 15:44 by Nataliaincanada ]
Natalia, now that you have provided us with a clearer picture of the circumstances, my inclination is to recommend that you go at the most convenient time for you, your friend and his family. It's a wonderful opportunity. Over the years, I have always enjoyed staying and spending time with friends and their families on trips overseas, including this one. These are friends that I made while traveling; and some of these friendships have endured since I made by first trip around the world in 1973-'74.
Rightly or wrongly, most people fear the unknown. I certainly have trepidations before going on a trip -- any trip, regardless of the continent. But those concerns ease or vanish once I'm there. Mind you, you have to have your wits about you; and trust your instincts. But you'll find that most people are helpful and friendly. If you reach out, they will, too. All it takes is a gesture, be it a smile, a greeting, etc.
Bravo for doing the research. Last year, family and friends urged that I not travel to West Africa because of Ebola and troubles in Burkina Faso. I told them that I had done the research, weighed the risks, and definitely decided to go. Let knowledge and your instincts be your guide, not others' fears.
Africa is an amazing place. After my first trip there, I sent a message to family and friends to let them know that I wished I had visited the continent at least 10 years earlier. I plan to return again and again.
Glad to know you are on the right path. It's the same going anywhere in the world, though single women can seem extra vulnerable all over the world.
I have had a wonderful couple I met on this Trip Advisor pages,, from New York( Originally from Peru and Sweden) stay with me for 3 weeks in Nigeria but I had to teach them how to be safe even with me. Fifteen years on, I have been to see them more than 10 x in NY.l cannot tell you of the surprises that await you, for want of blowing our trumpet! Kindness is found everywhere in the world especially the most unlikely places and loneliness in the expected likely places in the western part of the world. Now that you talk a lot more about your trip, I know you are a smart, fearless woman and I wish you the best.
What you can count on is a friend with a real phone no if the waters get choppy! I can send trusted friends to help anywhere in Nigeria, yes we can be super reliable irrespective of our world image! Do not stop asking questions as you plan the trip! The couple who came to Nigeria during the Olympics of South Africa incidentally gave me one of the most precious gifts ever - nothing physical and I am forever grateful we did not let Fear delay our meeting and that gift. If you read earlier posts, you will see that I only wanted them to have a good experience the safe way.
Ask whenever you feel unsure, your questions will never be too many. Nothing unreal exists, Herein lies..........
I am still here! I apologize for not writing sooner. A lot has been going on. A friend of mine died of cancer several weeks ago, and then my grandmother passed away last week. Plus, I was sick with a sinus/cold, and my vehicle was out of commission for about 5 days so my dad was driving me to and from school. It was an emotionally and mentally draining week. I felt like everything was happening all at once.
I haven't done much research on Nigeria since I last posted although I did look at flights. On May 21, the flight was $1073 (maybe a few dollars off) and with medical/accident/cancellation is was app. $1240. However, since that time, prices have risen dramatically! It has gone up about $700-$800! I can't believe how much it changed in 1-2 weeks. I am guessing because it is prime season to book tickets that this is the reason prices have spiked. I'm hoping that they will decrease again in the next month or so otherwise I don't think that I will be able to go at that price by the time I factor in other costs.
I'm feeling a little more relaxed about the possibility of going to Nigeria. I was panicking in the beginning because it was all so new to me, and it is so different than traveling to Europe. There were also a lot of concerns due to the travel advisory from the government, the vaccinations and malaria situation, and the information from the media. Plus, the not so positive reviews that I read on other travel forums advising against travel to Nigeria. It was all overwhelming! However, I am not feeling so scared or overwhelmed right now. I have been looking at some of my friend's pictures from his hometown with his family and it has been comforting. I also tutor a student who is from Nigeria, and she has been providing me with some comforting information, and telling me to not worry so much. She tells me that I will have a good time and enjoy Nigeria.
I appreciate all of your positive feedback, and comforting words. I was nervous at first but it helps to hear positive words about Nigeria. I would like to hear more. I almost wish that I had booked my ticket on May 21 when I saw the prices at $1073 but was waiting to get more information, and talk to my doctor. I also waited because we might go on strike in September so that was concerning to me. However, I didn't realize prices would go up that much. My tutoring student told me to do more research so I feel more comfortable about it before I book but I don't want to pay $2000 either! I will start doing more research, and learning more about the visa requirements, and malaria medication. I think there was one that is better than the other medications, and have less side effects. Which would would you recommend?
Thanks, and if I have any more questions, I will be sure to ask.