Lagos as a city is very popular among tourist with the urge to explore famous landmarks and historical sites in and around it. Lagos has over time been known for its weekend crowd and rush be it in the movies, malls or plain walking on the beaches especially when a public holiday falls on that weekend. Staying safe in Lagos during these periods can be much work which informed some of the tips that would be shared with you.
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Staying Safe in Lagos
When to Visit
Before visiting Lagos find out about the best time and season to visit since Lagos has a Tropical Savannah climate with dry season bringing in most heat followed by the wet season usually within April and July which is the heavy rains and the mild wet season between August and September. Find a trustworthy friend, relative or travel agency to plan your itinerary while visiting to ensure you explore and enjoy Lagos like a local instead of a tourist which would most likely attract the dubious crowd to you. Remember to pack comfortable wears in line with the present season Lagos would be on your arrival to ensure less spending on clothing and more on the needful. One point to remember when considering staying safe in Lagos as a tourist is haggling price.
Bring a good camera
Next thing to do is take along a good camera like the Canon series which gives you the luxury of taking pictures and videos at close range to suit your taste. Speaking of your taste, you have to take into consideration the qualities you want in your camera be it a point and shoot camera that would just be what you want if you are considering a lightweight camera at a low cost. The Mirrorless and SLR cameras are known for their ability to block reflections and other filters from pictures taken to show their raw format which makes them ideal for edits on your computer.
When in Public
When going around in the public, lose the touristy look of either a waist purse dangling on your person or a purse at your neck with money or other valuables stowed away inside. Rather adopting a much relaxed approach to blending in beautifully like a local would with a simple tee shirt, trousers/short, and sneakers or palm slippers to complement the look. Try not to be flashy as this encourages the area touts common in this region to accost and mob you of your belongings without caring the effects it has on you. Your regular seller in Lagos ensures they hike prices just to test how conversant you are with the area and goods you are buying, whatever price you conclude on would determine the amount subsequent goods from the same vendor would be sold to you at.
As much as you can, do not appear to be lost and fumbling with directions instead approach an officer of the law close to wherever you are to ask for directions. If this is not possible check your google map for your location after which you can possibly approach a friendly looking local to ask for directions which is usually divulged with much enthusiasm but ask two or three other people before making an informed decision. After making this decision, taking a taxi has been made easy with the emergence of apps like Uber, Taxify, and OgaTaxi which offers you a fully air-conditioned experience at a little cost to your destination.
Taking buses in Lagos can be quite tedious coupled with the fact of one chance vehicles plying different routes in Lagos. These buses appear as the usual yellow and black strip buses but normally full of hoodlums and tout ready to strip you of your belongings and if possible taking you bodily for their nefarious activities. For staying safe in Lagos as a tourist, ensure you check the people on a bus you want to board to read their countenance quickly judging and making your decision whether or not to board the bus. Whenever you have an uneasy feeling towards a bus let it go and be patient for the next one because you may never know what might happen.
Safety when sightseeing
As a tourist, you should know when a sightseeing venture is going south, this is the time to respect yourself and return to your lodging without much ado as any kind of delay can be harmful your mission of staying safe in Lagos as a tourist. Whenever the crowd in your location of sightseeing is too much keep your valuables like your phones and camera very close to avoid those onlookers whose sole aim of visiting is to steal and put you at risk of further injuries if you struggle.
Staying Safe in Lagos
When in dangerous areas
Staying safe in Lagos as a tourist is very easy just stay away from areas that are tagged high-risk areas which are full of hoodlums laying in wait for the unsuspecting and newbies. People residing in such areas have knowledge of these places and are more than happy to tell you about their experiences and the generally unsaid rules for staying safe there. As mentioned earlier have a tour consultant, relative or friend that can show you the ropes of wherever you choose to stay during your visit to Lagos.
Always be polite whenever you are up and about in Lagos wearing a charming smile to attract the locals to you warmly without any doubt. The local’s goodwill to you during your stay is an important determinant of whether or not you would enjoy your stay and exploration. These locals come in handy when trying to navigate unknown areas because when they themselves are not knowledgeable about your question they direct you to the next helpful person that would help with your inquiries which would opt your bar of staying safe in Lagos as a tourist.
Last but not the least is to be alert to your surroundings and dangers that might surface at any time since Lagos is known for its ability to change at the twinkle of an eye. Take in little details in your surroundings like the exit doors in any building you enter, take in the signs you have around, their meanings and implications for reference as things would unfold. When you are in doubt get to safety first before rationalizing any situation.
Overall remember Lagos is the city that never sleeps and where potentials come alive daily depending on the right kind of effort and spirit invested into it. With this said, enjoy your stay in Lagos and remember to share with us on our social media handles your Lagos experiences.
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