Everything you need to know about shipping to Nigeria
Despite being one of the largest African countries, Nigeria is still considered an emerging, developing nation. However, you wouldn't know this is the case judging from their impressive medal haul at the 2014 Commonwealth Games. A total of 36 medals, including 11 gold, ensured Nigeria put itself firmly on the map when it comes to sport. Let's just ignore the country's 2014 World Cup performance!
Of course now the Commonwealth Games is all said and done, athletes must return to their native Nigeria with their luggage in tow, though inevitably a few athletes will have left belongings at their accommodation.
As a result, here's a brief guide for athletes - and the multitude of Nigerians residing in the UK looking to send gifts, packages and parcels home - explaining details on shipping goods from the UK to Nigeria.
Address and packaging
According to the Universal Postal Union, outward items to Nigeria must always include the name of the country of destination printed on the last line of address, in capital letters and written in an internationally recognised language.
When it comes to packaging items, senders should wrap their items individually and place them in a strong, durable outer box to ensure the package is able to withstand the effects of shipping to Nigeria. Furthermore, brown tape or other durable variants should seal the package to ensure it is secure at all times.
As with most international parcels, goods worth up to £270 must have customs label CN22, signed by the sender and attached to the top left hand corner or the package. If goods are worth over £270, customs label CN23 is required, as well as an adhesive plastic wallet SP 126.
Import restrictions and prohibited items
Restrictions and prohibitions vary from country to country. In this case, Nigeria takes a very hard line on items falling under both categories and even implements a hotline for people to tip off suspected smuggling violations.
Prohibited items include: ballpoint pens; wheelbarrows; furniture and parts thereof; meat and edible offal; birds' eggs; fresh cut flowers; edible fruit and nuts; cereals; edible vegetables; cocoa butter; spaghetti; beer; mineral products; waters; preparations of meat and many more items. A full list can be found on the Nigeria Customs Service website.
A list of restricted items has not been published in full by Nigeria so it is worth contacting the Nigeria Customs Administration in advance to check whether your item will make it through customs. One thing that is certainly restricted is textiles, not to mention the various textile articles such as felt, yarn, twine, ropes and cables.
When sending items to Nigeria, it is important to check addresses, customs, restrictions and prohibited items before dropping an item off at the courier (or getting it collected). Check with the Nigeria Customs Administration if senders remain unsure about their parcel.
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