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How To Choose a Country For Your First International Trip

Nigerian tourists like to have their green passport full of visa stamps from other countries regardless of the many tourist attractions we have in Nigeria.

It is the dream of going somewhere different and experiencing something new that drives us outside the shores of our fatherland. If you have dreams of travelling outside Nigeria, what criteria should you consider when choosing a country for your first international trip?

Here are a few suggestions. You can choose places with:

  1. No Language Barrier

In Nigeria, English is our lingua franca. So it only makes sense for you to choose a country where the English-speaking population is higher than any other language. You would have a fun time visiting Ireland or Japan, but if you haven’t learned their language or if you don’t have a host/guide that can interpret for you, the trip might not be so amusing. This is why Nigerian tourists enjoy travelling in Africa because they know most African countries are English-speaking countries.

  1. Affordable Feeding Spots and Modes of Transportation

When choosing a location, feeding and transportation are part of what increases the total cost of travel. Sure, you know the cost of your flight ticket and hotel rooms. But what of the cost of food at a local restaurant or cab fare during your inter-city waka? In some cities, using a train is cheaper than using a cab while in others, using a bus is just as cheap as a train if you know where your stops are. Some countries are now banning vehicles from their cities. So if long walks or cycling is not your thing, it might be best to avoid visiting those areas. In most foreign countries, eating at a food court in a City Mall may be cheaper than ordering a meal at your hotel. Also, eating at a local pub may be cheaper than eating in a fancy restaurant where tap water is free and the price of a bottle of sparkling water is high.

  1. Lots Of Attractions and Activities To Engage In

It’s usually in your best interest to choose a location with multiple tour attractions. That way you can have a full itinerary of activities to engage in. The last thing you want is to visit a town that only has two major attractions going for it – both of which you can experience in one day – when you have already booked for a one week vacation. By day four, boredom will become your companion. You should be able to take a glass boat ride, swim with the fishes, hike up a volcanic plain etc. Or even see the ice peaks of a mountain, have fun in a water park or enjoy a meal in the desert or on a cruise with belly dancers. The options of fun things to do besides a city tour in a tourist town with lots of attractions are many.

  1. Less Strenuous Visa And Other Requirements

Due to the high flux of Nigerians migrating out of our country, securing visas has become a challenge. For a first-timer, we would recommend a visa-free country. If you have extra cash, then doing an evisa or travelling to locations with visa on arrival is the next best option. That way, you reduce the extra cost spent on visa application processes. Then there is the reason for your travel. Many people get denied visa because their documentation does not support the purpose of their trip. Make sure you have that sorted out before you apply for a visa to avoid wasting cash on visa fees.

Also, some countries require a plethora of tests which might be a pretty penny. It could even be mandatory to have hotel accommodation booked (which might be a problem if the hotel you choose has no cancellation policy) and return flight before the embassy grants you the visa. You can look for countries with the least requirements that won’t increase your travel cost immensely. Visit the country’s website or embassy to clarify before applying for their visa. Whatever you decide, just make sure your passport has at least six months validity on it before you think of travelling out of Nigeria.

There is no way we can exhaust this issue in one article but at least, this is a start. You can check here for more things to consider when travelling out of Nigeria.

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Ann Esievoadje

Ann Esievoadje is a freelance writer who is passionate about encouraging a reading culture and personal development. She has authored two books, The Quilt (fiction) and Being Mummy and Me (non-fiction). She manages Pulchra Publishing which offers a content creation/editing, transcription, different forms of writing (including Ghostwriting) service and her blog, Life Love and Anything Goes at annesievoadje.blogspot.com.ng. You can reach her at annesievoadje@gmail.com

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