Cost of Living in Lagos, Nigeria

How Much Does It Cost to Live In Lagos?

Lagos is a city in Nigeria, and with its adjoining areas, is the most populous in Nigeria, and the most populous on the African continent.

It is also the 5th most populous city in the world. That means more people than in Tokyo, Moscow, London and Mumbai.

Lagos is the center of the Nigerian movie industry, music scene and African nightlife. The growth in its entertainment industry has had a significant impact on the increasing number of social activities in the city.

Living in Lagos can be sometimes expensive but that still completely depends on your own preferences.

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Cost of Living in Nigeria


Depending on where you live, the food in restaurants or on the street shouldn’t be too expensive. If you eat in an inexpensive restaurant – all three meals of the day, you shouldn’t be spending more than 15$ per day. You can also get a meal (like pressed chicken, suya, pepper soup) from a street vendor or a local restaurant for 3-5$.



Current food prices are roughly around 4-5$ for a larger tray of eggs (30 eggs), 3$ for around 5 pounds of potatoes and the same goes for a bucket of oranges. A large pineapple would be around 2-3$. Meat is a bit more, and most expats in Nigeria shop at Shoprite, a South African based grocery chain popular in this country.



Transportation in Lagos can be a bit messy if you own a car because of the heavy traffic congestion and the fuel shortages, but if you take the pubic transport (and Lagos has the best public transport in the country) your one-way ticket will cost you around 0.50$. There are also ferries to combat the heavy traffic congestion if you are living and working on the island.



Utilities aren’t expensive in Lagos. If you live in a larger apartment (of about 85m2) all basic utilities like electricity, cooling, water, gas and garbage services will cost you around 30$. You may experience occasional water or electric shortages though usually apartments for rent almost certainly include generators.

Sports and leisure


Enjoying sports and fitness is always reserved for those who have some money to spare on these activities, and that’s why they’re always a bit more expensive. A membership at a gym or a fitness club in Nigeria is approximately around 34$. Going to the cinema isn’t too expensive, but with the low salaries in Lagos – it isn’t cheap either – around 6$.

Clothing and shoes


Shopping for clothes is ridiculously cheap in Lagos, especially if you’re an expat coming from the western countries. Quality jeans like Levi’s will cost you even less than 20$, quality running shoes of brands like Nike cost around 50$, while simpler pieces of clothing for summer like short dresses and shirts cost around 25$! It’s not often that shirts cost more than jeans!

Rent per month


Renting a house can affect your wallet significantly, especially if you’re doing so in the Lagos island. The island is a very popular place that the government has put a lot of effort in. It is also home to most of Nigerian celebrities and important people. If you’re looking for an apartment in the center of Lagos, that will cost you a whopping 1000$.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Lagos

*Note: All prices are indicated in USD.
Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant)$2.01
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter)$0.96
Water (0.33 Liter)$0.22
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter)$2.15
Loaf Bread (500g)$0.95
Eggs (12)$1.62
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket$0.55
Monthly Pass$22.04
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling)$29.23
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local$0.05
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL)$40.69
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult$33.95
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour)$10.65
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release$5.51
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable)$18.41
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...)$25.68
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range)$53.29
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center$1001.08
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center$613.88
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center$2856.46

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Lagos?

Rent is, without a doubt, the biggest expense for anyone in Lagos.

While people in most other countries and cities in the world spend approximately the same amount of money on rent and food, this is not the case in Lagos. Rent takes up more than 50% of the people’s salaries, while the other large 20% gets spent on food.

Other major expenses are transportation costs, utilities and restaurants.

If you’re traveling to Lagos, around 500$ should cover your basic monthly expenses (food, social life, a bit of shopping and other expenses) even with the recession that is in effect right now.

Average Costs Breakdown


Lagos: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

Salaries are extremely low in Lagos, especially taking into account how expensive the rent is.

Minimum wage in this country is only around 80$, which makes it virtually impossible to pay all expenses.

Average monthly net salary in Lagos is also very low – only 240$, so people probably have a very hard time making ends meet.

With around 1000$ a month you can live like a king here – buying new clothes, eating out, traveling on vacations abroad twice or more a year, and still save money.

While many working Nigerians live on as little as 200-300$ a month, some live on far less.

Average Salary$239.48
Minimum Wage$83.09
Mortgage Interest Rate19.56%

What About Travel Safety in Lagos?

Lagos Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: Lagos Safety Review

Safety Index:

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2 Reviews on Lagos

  1. M
    Mars Shakim says:

    What careers gives you a salary of $1000.? Biweekly, monthly? What is the education level needed for those careers? Are medical insurance included?

  2. So if I have a salary of $5,000 us per month could I live very well in Lagos?

Rated 3 / 5 based on 2 user reviews.

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