Best and Safest Ways to Use a Credit Card in Nigeria
The two biggest credit card networks are Visa and Mastercard. However, due to extensive financial fraud, cash is still king in Nigeria. You might have trouble using your American Express because the nation only recently began to accept it after spending years on the provider’s blocklist.
Nigeria hasn’t kept up with technology as quickly as other African nations, so learning how to get the most of your plastic is important.
Although many large hotels and businesses may accept credit cards, it’s more probable that you’ll run against sellers who only accept cash.
Which Credit Cards are Recognized in Nigeria?
Visa or Mastercard are probably accepted wherever in Nigeria that accepts cards as a form of payment. Only upscale restaurants and hotels accept American Express cards. No one accepts Discover credit cards.
The following charges may apply when using a credit card in Nigeria:
Foreign exchange charges. Depending on your card, you can be charged a fee of up to 3 percent on each international purchase. For every $5,000 spent in Nigeria, there is a $150 fee.
Costs for currency exchange. You will receive a Dynamic Currency Conversion if a merchant gives you a choice to pay in US dollars or if an ATM allows you to withdraw US dollars (DCC). DCC frequently has a low conversion rate.
Can I pay both charges?
Yes. Paying locally and using a credit card without foreign transaction fees will help you avoid this.
The following cards could help you save money if you frequently visit Nigeria:
The United Explorer is a good option for infrequent and frequent United passengers who don’t want to pay a high yearly cost but want to use key United benefits. You can accumulate miles on your purchases for a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year before paying $95, which can be redeemed for United flights, seat upgrades, United Club membership, and other things.
The sign-up bonus for the card is also noteworthy because you can receive a value of up to 10,000. You can earn the bonus if you spend $6,000 on your card within the first six months after creating your account. This is a fantastic bargain.
On flights run by United, you receive priority boarding, a free first checked bag, and a 25% discount on in-flight purchases. These are qualities that every co-branded branded airline card has. The United Explorer Card, on the other hand, takes a step further and includes two annual, one-time United Club passes in addition to a credit that may be used every four years to apply for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. Both are wonderful bonuses that distinguish this airline card.
Some customers claim that the United MileagePlus® Club card doesn’t offer much more than the UnitedSM Explorer Card besides United Club membership. However, other customers claim that United Club membership is incredibly beneficial, particularly now that so many of United’s lounges have been refurbished.
Although JPMorgan Chase Credit Card is not BBB-accredited, as of December 2021, it had a C+ rating and a composite score of 1.18 stars out of 5 based on 229 customer reviews. Poor customer service and hidden fees, in general, are the main topics of customer complaints about Chase credit cards. Ensure you understand the rewards agreement and credit card terms to prevent problems with your account.
Chase has a Trustpilot rating of 1.6 as of December 2021. Most unfavorable ratings mention unhelpful customer support and delayed replies to fraud concerns. Positive evaluations highlight the bank’s excellent mobile app and swift problem-solving. Your experience with Chase customer care could be different overall.
You might get the best value out of your money by carefully contrasting the premium and mid-tier United credit card possibilities.
A mid-tier Delta card with a $0 introductory annual fee that increases to $99 the next year is the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card. It offers 2x miles for purchases made on Delta, 2x for sales made in US supermarkets, and 1x for all other transactions. A substantial welcome bonus of 70,000 bonus miles is also included with the card after spending $2,000 in the first three months. Based on Finder’s current valuations, this can be worth an average of $560, depending on what you redeem your miles for.
The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card occupies an uncomfortable spot among the other Delta cards: For the price of the card, it is strikingly identical to the Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card, which is the “entry” Delta card and offers 2x miles on qualified transactions and has no annual fee (see Terms apply, see rates & fees).
On the opposite end of the scale, Delta’s mid-tier card, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, renders the card all but useless. The annual companion pass you receive from the Delta Platinum Card is worth much more than $250 (see Terms apply, see rates & fees); so long as you use a couple of its benefits, the $250 cost of the card is more than pays for itself.
It is advised to dismiss the Delta SkyMiles Blue card entirely and consider the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card to be the true entry-level Delta card. The Delta Gold card has a $99 annual cost after the first year, but it also offers a few travel benefits not offered by the Delta SkyMiles Blue card. Notably, each flight includes a free first checked bag. Your first checked bag on a Delta trip will cost $30 as of April 2021. So, if you use this benefit four times a year, you will make enough savings to pay the annual charge for the credit card.
In the end, the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card is a reliable starting point for accruing and using SkyMiles. But if you travel frequently enough to justify the Delta Gold’s price, you might as well spend the extra money on the Delta Platinum. Despite the higher annual charge, it provides better rewards and more benefits, and it is simple to recoup the cost of the card.
Although this is a mid-tier co-branded branded credit card from Delta, it is one of the best ways to start earning SkyMiles. Although there is a $250 annual fee, the card’s travel benefits, such as the extremely valued yearly companion certificate, are worth much more each year. Additionally comparable to the opulent Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card in terms of miles earned from transactions.
Get this card if you fly at least three roundtrips with Delta annually.
Suppose you fly less than three times a year. In that case, you might want to think about getting either the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card or Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card, or the Delta Reserve if you’re a die-hard Delta flyer who wants the best benefits available.
United Airlines and their partner Lufthansa provide flights between the US and Nigeria. You might accrue and redeem miles on these trips with a United credit card, helping you save money while making purchases abroad.
Also, think about getting a Delta credit card. Compared to rival carriers, Delta offers nonstop flights to Lagos with a shorter flight time. Possibly, an American Express card will not be accepted in Nigeria, so consider using it to save money on your flights.
Credit cards with chip and PIN
Most people in Nigeria use chip-and-PIN credit cards. Before leaving on your trip, request a four-digit PIN from your bank to help you avoid uncomfortable circumstances and card declines.
Is using my credit card in Nigeria safe?
Nigeria spent a long time on Amex’s blocklist because of its reputation for credit card theft. Follow these techniques to improve your credit card safety:
- Choose ATMs wisely. In general, bank-affiliated ATMs are safer than those found on public streets.
- Pick up two cards. A backup card could be useful if your card is stolen or your payments are rejected.
- Keep an eye on your card. Watch your card every time you use it to make a payment to prevent card misuse.
How to be ready for a trip to Nigeria
- Purchase a credit card with no foreign transaction costs. This can result in up to 3% savings on each international transaction.
- There is the widespread use of Visa and Mastercard. In Nigeria, Discover and American Express are less frequently accepted.
- Before you leave, let your bank know. In Nigeria, financial fraud is widespread. Your bank might lock your card after your first transaction if you don’t let them know.
- Get the phone number of your bank. The quickest way to address any card-related problems is through this.
- Obtain an extra card. You can run out of money if your card is blocked. One solution is to carry a backup card.
- Bring some money. Please make sure you have plenty of cash because it rules in Nigeria.
Should I acquire cash in Nigeria using my credit card?
Only hotels and restaurants at well-known tourist attractions accept credit cards in Nigeria. For all other purchases, cash is required.
A favorable conversion rate for local currency can be found through ATMs, but if you use a credit card, you will be charged a cash advance fee and interest from the minute you withdraw the money. Using a debit card will help you prevent this.
Are cabs in Nigeria accept credit cards?
No, however, you might give phoning Uber a shot and using the app to pay with a credit card.
Although this may change in the future, credit cards are not generally accepted in Nigeria. Carry enough cash to get by till then. Consider using a debit card while withdrawing cash to avoid cash advance fees and an APR. A travel credit card without international transaction fees is the best option for anything else you purchase.