10 Things to Know Before Relocating to Lagos
Relocating to Lagos is a thought that has likely crossed the minds of many Nigerians at some point. Especially, people seeking new opportunities or new graduates. The populous city of Lagos is home to people from all walks of life. From the mainland to the Island, the city that never sleeps keeps getting more visitors daily.
What is so special about the city of Lagos that makes it the number one destination for anyone hoping to relocate in the country? And, what makes this city more desirable than other cities in the country?
Before the creation of Abuja, Lagos was the seat of the federal government. The city had seen rapid developments since Nigeria gained independence and it keeps developing till date. Lagos has seen tremendous economic growth over the years, making it the number economy in Africa. The fact that Lagos has the biggest economy in West Africa alone is enough reason why everyone wants to live in Lagos. The Lagos dream is another great factor- where people believe you can come into the city as a peasant and become a millionaire in years to come, an example is the story of ola of Lagos.
The Lagos appeal is not new. A travel back in time will make you understand that “the center of excellence” had always been “special” so to speak. It was the former seat of power, the commercial and industrial capital of the nation. The need to move the federal capital territory to a well-planned and central location saw Lagos losing it “FCT status” but nevertheless, the city still maintains its reputation as the commercial center and beehive of all industrial activities of the nation.
So, if you’re about to make Lagos your new home, or you’re still giving it a thought , this guide will help you decide if Lagos is right for you and help you with your relocation plans to Lagos.
10 things to know before relocating to Lagos
The city is diverse
Although located in the south western part of Nigeria, the Lagos of Lagos is ethnically diverse. You’ll find Yoruba, Igbos, Hausa, Tiv, Nupe, Ijaw and any tribe you can think of in the city of Lagos. For someone just looking to relocate to Lagos, always bear in mind that you’re moving to a multicultural city, you might need to let go of some prejudice you have against other tribes before moving into the city.Your next door neighbour might be Igbo and your grocery seller might be Hausa or another tribe.
Lagos is Affordable(ish)
There’s a saying in Lagos that “shoe get size , okrika get quality” this simply translates to the fact that you can get whatever quality of life you want at your income range. While affordability can be subjective, there are relatively inexpensive and good neighbourhood in Lagos.
Public transportation is available
With the daily movement of luxury cars all around the mainland and Island of Lagos, it’s quite understandable that most visitors to the city might think the cost of transportation can be expensive. But contrary to that, transportation is quite affordable in the city of Lagos.
While some residents in the city use their private cars to commute within the city, most Lagosians make use of the commercial buses to get around the city. The most common means of transport is the commercial buses popularly called “danfo”, there’s also the Bus rapid transport called the “BRT”, keke napep and motorcycles provide cheaper alternatives (although with restrictions), taxis are mainly used by people who want a private chauffeur to their destination. There are also ride hailing services like Uber and taxify.
The job market is full of opportunities
Although the country has struggled in recent years, job growth in Lagos has seen stready growth. Among the nation’s largest cities, Lagos has seen the highest percentage of job growth year over year and the most jobs. For people seeking new opportunities Lagos is your best bet. You’ll always find something to do here.
The night life
The night life in Lagos is second to none in the whole of Nigeria. It is called the city that never sleeps for a reason. There best clubs in Nigeria can be found on the Lagos mainland and Island. Lagos is also home to thousands of bars and “joints” scattered around the city. There are also restaurants that are open for almost 24 hours in the day. There’s also the weekly premiere of different nollywood movies all across different cinemas in the city. There’s just a simple rule- don’t get carried away. You might spend all your money thinking “the night is still young”
Lagosians love any excuse to party and the weekend is when it all happens. From Friday till Sunday, an average Lagosian probably has one or two parties lined up to attend. It could be a wedding, concert, anniversary, birthday party, or a let’s-get-together-and-drink-for-no-reason party. It’s all part of what makes the city a fun place to live.
The city of Lagos is overpopulated, which is just the sad reality about the beautiful city. With a total population of over 14 million residents, it’s no surprise that the city seems filled to the brim. So it may take a while to get used to seeing a crowd at the bus stop, at the ATM machine, at churches/mosques or even at your local restaurant.
Traffic is a part of Life
What is Lagos without traffic? There’s traffic in the morning, afternoon, evening and even at midnight (seriously). Most Lagosians are already used to spending long hours in traffic, so 2 – 3 hour traffic from one destination to another is just as normal as breathing in fresh air. For someone new to the city or hoping to relocate to Lagos, this might really take a lot to get used to.
Despite the bubbling night life, Lagosians (like other Nigerians) are religious people. The city of Lagos has roughly equal numbers of Muslims and Christians. Most of the mega churches in the country are located here.
So, don’t be surprised when you encounter megaphones blaring salvation messages, the nearby mosque waking you up at 5am to pray, street evangelists pressing flyers into your hands and asking if you’ve been saved, and don’t forget the bus evangelists.
Aside the religious part of it, you have the local cd seller playing music to attract customers, the sim registration agent with Loud MTN/GLO& Airtel jingles, the rat killer with his mini sound system, the promotion team of different brands on cabstars , don’t forget the local bar also has to play loud music to attract customers.
Always shine your eye
Lagos is regarded as the city that never sleeps and there’s a reason for that. Everyone seem to always be in a rush (for God knows what). So you really have to be careful when dealing with people in Lagos and wise up (shine your eye). The gentle Samaritan offering to help might just be a scammer, the well packaged agent might just be an omo onile in disguise. Always do a background check on any company before attending any interview, confirm the identity of the spare parts dealer at Ladipo market before making a trade , be careful of that new phone or charger at computer village and most importantly avoid one chance at all cost.