The new Nigeria Visa Policy boasts "a visa for every conceivable purpose". See the different classes and basis in this post.

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The Federal Government of Nigeria implemented a new visa policy in the last quarter of 2020. The policy, also known as the NVP2020 intends to improve business opportunities and boost tourism in Nigeria.

It will, for one thing, re-integrate Africans in the diaspora into the West African civilisation via the short visit visas scheme. And with attention to Nigerians in the diaspora with dual citizenship, the special visas for diaspora allows you to visit Nigeria with another passport aside from the Green Passport.

RELATED: Lagos Airport Arrival: 10 Burning Questions Answered

The new Nigeria Visa Policy boasts “a visa for every conceivable purpose” by all means necessary. It, in the hope it supports the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan, reviewed existing visa application channels to include the distribution of electronic visas (e-Visas), among others.

Here, we highlight the benefits, modifications and everything in between.

Nigeria visa categories per NVP2020

Nigeria visas are sorted according to the following categories:

  1. Short Visit Visa ((28 classes)
  2. Temporary Residence Visa (36 classes)
  3. Permanent Residence Visa (15 classes)
  1. Short Visit Visa (SVV): This visa category allows travellers to visit Nigeria for not more than three months. The Short Visit Visa is reserved for tourism, business, sports, festivities, academic (exchange programmes), temporary work permit and humanitarian services.
  2. Temporary Residence Visa (TRV): Foreigners can stay in Nigeria for not more than two years, were they to have a Temporary Residence Visa. This visa category is subject to renewal. It’s suitable for employment, education, business establishment amongst others.
  3. Permanent Residence Visa (PRV): A certain group of persons can obtain permanent residency in Nigeria. From spouses of Nigerian citizens, investors, who import a stipulated annual minimum threshold, highly-skilled professionals to a certain category of retirees.

Means of processing a Nigerian Visa

The three visa application channels available to travellers interested in visiting the West African nation are:

  1. Visa on Arrival (VOA)
  2. Electronic Visa (e-Visa)
  3. Visa at the Nigerian Embassy or Visa Application Centers
Visa on Arrival (VOA)
  1. Visa on Arrival (VOA): Some foreign nationals are allowed to obtain a visa upon arriving at their respective point of entry in Nigeria. Such visa application process is aptly referred to as Visa on Arrival (VOA). There are four classes of VOA (F4C, F5A, F7K, and F9A).

Who’s eligible for Visa on Arrival in Nigeria?

  1. Holders of passports from any of the African Union countries.
  2. Foreign nationalities (from eligible countries) who fall under the following categories:
    • F4C: Frequently-travelled executives and businessmen
    • F5A: Tourism
    • F7K: Emergency relief work
    • F9A: Nigerians by birth returning with another national passport
RELATED: How to Apply for Schengen Visa in Nigeria

How to apply for visa on arrival in Nigeria

  • Proceed to the designated desk (marked ‘Visa on Arrival’ at your respective port of entry into Nigeria
  • Make a payment online and print out your receipt
  • Biometric enrollment follows. The visa is, then, issued, authorised by the Comptroller General of Immigration

Visa on arrival requirements for Nigeria

  • Valid international passport with a minimum validity of 6 months
  • Valid round-trip flight ticket
Electronic Visa (e-Visa)

2. Electronic Visa (e-Visa): The new e-Visa service enables intending travellers to process their respective Nigerian visa online. This channel of application is available for short visit visas of not more than three months.

Travellers receive a Travel Authorization Letter before arriving in the country. There are 17 classes of the short visit visas that can be applied and obtained electronically. These include transit, tourism, journalism, sports, business, humanitarian service, a staff of NGO, and entertainment purposes.

How to apply for Nigeria e-Visa?

  • Select the applicable visa type/class in the Short Visit Visa category on the Nigerian Immigration website
  • Complete your application, upload the required document and make payment
  • Download printable receipt (a copy will be mailed to you)
  • Your application will be processed within two working days
  • Pack your bags – Nigeria, here we come! So easy, isn’t it?
RELATED: How to Apply for a South African Visa in Nigeria

Nigeria e-Visa requirements

  • Passport with, at least, six months validity. Advisably, it should come with two blank visa pages for endorsement
  • Return flight ticket. Book Affordable Flight Now
  • Proof of sufficient means of sustenance (funds)
  • Proof of hotel reservation (Nigerian host address)
Application at Embassies and Application Centres

2. Visa at the embassy (Nigerian High Commissions or Consulates) and application centres: You can process and obtain all the different classes of Nigerian visas at various embassies and visa application centres.

On the other hand, all classes of Temporary and Permanent Residence visas are processed and obtained at the embassies and visa application centres, ONLY.

Nigeria visa application centres operating in some countries facilitate visa application on behalf of the passport holder. Nigeria visa application now includes the acquisition of biometrics of the Nigerian visa holder at the embassy and port of entry.

How to process visas at Nigerian embassies

  • Submit your application and make payment on the Nigerian Immigration website
  • Visit the Nigerian Embassy (High Commission or Consulate) to submit required documents
  • Attend visa interview where required
  • Wait for response from the embassy
RELATED: Top 15 Visa Interview Questions And Their Answers

Visa-free countries to Nigeria

Citizens of the following ECOWAS countries can visit Nigeria without a visa. This is in line with the ECOWAS Free Movement Protocol.

Benin Republic Burkina Faso Cape Verde Cote D’Ivoire
The Gambia Ghana Guinea Guinea Bissau
Liberia Mali Niger Senegal
Sierra Leone Togo    
Visa-Free to Nigeria according to the ECOWAS Free Movement Protocol

Citizens of Cameroon and Chad can also visit Nigeria for a short stay without a visa.

RELATED: Visa Free countries for Nigerians 

From 6 to 79 – The Nigeria visa classes explained

There were just six classes of Nigeria visas before the NVP2020. These, until now, hardly covered the many different purposes for travel and tourism.

From breaking down what used to be a single Residency Visa to 36 different classes. to availing citizens of all countries with visa on arrival for tourism, the new visa regime expands opportunities for bilateral relationships.

In like manner, each one of the 79 new classes of Nigeria visas now has visa codes. This is to ease processing.

Temporary Work Permit application submission has been automated, via the e-Visa system. And all visa payments are now processed online.

All these changes are expected to impact the country’s economy. It should attract foreign direct investment and boost tourism, without threatening security. Hopefully, it’s properly implemented.


Can I work with any class of the Nigerian visa?

No! The right to reside is not an automatic right to work. The Permanent Residence (N5A, N5B, N6A to N6D) visas have restricted employment permission.

While the Permanent Residence visa, like the classes N4A and N3E, issued to highly-skilled foreign nationals and investors, grants a 5-year work permit with multiple entries. Know the visa classes well if you’ll love to live and work in Nigeria.

What’s the difference between Visa on Arrival and Visa-free

Think of Visa on Arrival as a process of obtaining a visa upon arrival in your destination. It’s not visa-free, just that you don’t have to apply for a travel visa beforehand.

Visa-free is, as the name sounds, FREE. Gather your travel documents, book a flight and make a reservation. Up-up-and-away you go…

How many entries are permitted holders of Nigeria work and residence permit?

Holders of Nigeria residence and work permit are entitled to multiple entries.

Is successful submission of Nigeria e-Visa application, an approval?

Successful submission of Nigeria e-visa application is not an approval. Your application will be processed. You will receive possible approval and an electronic Travel Authorization Letter (eTAL) via mail within 48 hours.

Do I need to include acceptance of immigration responsibility with my visa application?

Yes! Each visa application letter shall include acceptance of immigration responsibility.


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