Visa Battlegrounds: 5 Most Difficult Countries to Visit from Nigeria
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Business - Travel - July 24, 2023

Visa Battlegrounds: 5 Most Difficult Countries to Visit from Nigeria

Traveling the world can be a fulfilling and enriching experience, offering a chance to explore diverse cultures, savor breathtaking landscapes, and create lasting memories. However, for Nigerian citizens, the journey to cross international borders can sometimes resemble battlefields of administrative hurdles and complex visa procedures.

As the world becomes more interconnected, international travel becomes an essential aspect of personal growth and cultural exchange. Nigerian travelers, like those from any other nation, aspire to explore beyond their borders, fostering understanding and strengthening global bonds. Yet, as we embark on these journeys, it is crucial to acknowledge the complexities of visa processes and plan our adventures diligently.

This article will highlight some African countries that are pleasing to Nigerians but are most difficult in terms of getting visas and meeting their stringent entry requirements. Let’s dive in.

Canada

Canada’s stunning landscapes and warm hospitality beckon travelers from around the globe, including Nigerians. However, the Canadian visa process demands careful attention and patience with aspiring visitors having to demonstrate their financial capability, purpose of visit, and strong ties to Nigeria.

For instance, a research done by Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) shed light on the alarming visa rejection rates faced by Nigerian students and other African nationals seeking to study in Canada. According to the report, only 12% of applicants managed to get their study permit applications approved, while the approval rate for Nigerian students specifically plummeted to a dismal 11.8%. The study points to bias and discrimination as the primary reasons behind these high rejection rates such as referring to Nigerians as “corrupt” and “untrustworthy.” This is not only applicable to Nigerian students but to every other Nigerian looking to travel.

United Kingdom

From the iconic landmarks of London to the serene countryside, the United Kingdom boasts a wealth of attractions. Yet, for Nigerian citizens, the path to experiencing this country’s wonders involves navigating through complex visa requirements such as providing comprehensive documentation to prove the genuineness of their visit and their intent to return to Nigeria.

One of the primary aspects that UK visa authorities scrutinize is the applicant’s intention for visiting the country, as well as financial capability, and ties to Nigeria. They need a clear purpose for their visit, like an acceptance letter from a recognized UK educational institution for students. Demonstrating sufficient funds to cover expenses and strong ties to Nigeria is vital to convince authorities of their intention to return. 

The recent visa restrictions imposed by the UK government, which ban foreign students from bringing their families into the country, including Nigerian students, have raised concerns and prompted students to explore other welcoming options. This further positions the country as one of the most difficult countries for immigrants.

Saudi Arabia

In the past, obtaining a visa to Saudi Arabia, especially for unaccompanied women, was a challenging task. However, the introduction of an eVisa for tourists has eased the process. Now, travelers can visit the country if they meet the electronic visa requirements. Nevertheless, there are rules to adhere to which makes it difficult such as non-Muslim tourists being restricted from entering Mecca or Medina.

The country’s strict visa policy is also influenced by the annual influx of Muslim pilgrims visiting for Hajj, necessitating limitations on the number of tourists to avoid overcrowding. As the eVisa opens doors for many, visitors must still respect the country’s cultural norms and guidelines which are mostly difficult.

Schengen Area (Europe)

The Schengen Area in Europe is among the most challenging regions for Nigerian citizens to obtain visas. As part of the Schengen Agreement, 26 European countries share a common visa policy, making it necessary for travelers to apply for a Schengen visa to enter any of these nations. Nigerian citizens often face difficulties in securing Schengen visas due to stringent requirements. 

They are required to provide extensive documentation, such as travel itineraries, proof of accommodation, financial statements, and travel insurance, to prove the purpose of their visit and ties to Nigeria. High visa rejection rates have been reported for Nigerian applicants seeking to explore the beauty and culture of countries like France, Germany, Italy, and Spain within the Schengen Area.

United States

The United States is notorious for being one of the most challenging countries for Nigerian citizens to obtain visas. The visa application process is rigorous, requiring applicants to demonstrate strong ties to Nigeria and a legitimate purpose for their visit. Nigerian travelers often face high rates of visa denials, making it difficult to gain entry for tourism, education, or business purposes. 

Despite having genuine intentions, the strict security measures and perceived risks of potential overstays contribute to the complexities of the visa application. The dream of experiencing the vibrant cities, diverse landscapes, and renowned universities of the USA remains elusive for many Nigerian citizens due to the arduous and often disheartening visa battle.

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