How Much Does it Cost to Ship Something to Nigeria?

  • MyUS charges as low as $10 to ship items from the US to Nigeria without including the Nigerian taxes and duties once your items arrive in the country. (Source)
  • According to MyUS, average transit times are 5 to 10 business days for economy shipping and 3 to 4 business days for express shipping.
  • One Reddit user who frequently ships to Nigeria says that they use a freight forwarder called Corporate Messengers that charges $5 per pound, with shipping taking about 2 weeks.
  • Other Reddit users who ship to Nigeria recommend using DHL and UPS, though they caution that it can be expensive- best to price it out on their websites
  • The shipping costs from the US to Nigeria depend on the level of service you require and the size, weight of your parcel, and discounts (if applicable). (Source)
  • The two main options for shipping items from the US to Nigeria include air freight and sea freight, with air freight being fast but expensive and sea freight being slow but affordable. (Source)
  • The Nigerian customs authority will allow you to import your household goods or personal effects duty-free into the country so long as you owned and used them for more than six months and you plan to use them again in the country. (Source)

You have the opportunity to compare the rates between different shipping companies when looking to ship items to Nigeria.

If your goal is to get the items to the destination without worrying about the costs, use a shipping service that uses air freight.

Shipping companies that offer sea freight services will be ideal if you’re operating on a budget and wouldn’t mind waiting several weeks for your cargo to reach Nigeria.

Cost Factors

Nigeria is a West-African country with a unique set of laws governing taxes and duties charged on shipped items. Other factors affect the cost of shipping items from the US to Nigeria. Understanding these factors will help you decide the means to use to get your goods to the country. Here they are:

1. The force of Demand and Supply

Carriers usually consider the profits they’ll get from shipping items to destination countries. In this case, the demand and supply of goods and transport services hugely affect the shipping costs. In developing countries such as Nigeria, transport costs (or freight rates) make up 15 to 20 percent of exported and imported goods.

Thus, commodities purchased at a lower price in the developing world cost significantly higher once they reach the area of destination. (Source) People having their goods shipped overseas to Nigeria have no other option than to comply with this rule. It’s mostly because the demand for freight services is higher than the actual capacity to meet them.

2. Inefficiency at the Local Ports

High costs of sea shipping in Nigeria are a result of the inefficient local ports. Despite being one of Africa’s largest economies, Nigeria has a handful of functional ports. There’s also a slow pace of offloading and inspections at the docks, which means that it takes a while before people get their goods cleared. (Source)

Besides the carrier’s shipping fees, excessive, unwanted duty fees charged at the destination make it unattractive to ship goods to Nigeria. The ports’ inefficiencies also come from the incentivized and enabled corruption from unofficial and official middlemen who promise to clear clients’ goods faster at a “fee.”

The Nigerian government recently launched reforms to ease export and import flow at the ports. (Source) With these reforms in place, touts who extort clients are likely to stop operating. However, the implementation of the reforms isn’t as effective as the government paints it to be.

3. Size and Weight of Parcel

The size and weight of a parcel are standard considerations for shipping costs. A bigger or oddly shaped package will have fewer orders packed near it, hence reducing the money made by the shipping company. The carrier will ask you to pay more for such parcels to compensate for space in shipping containers. (Source) However, something small, like if you’re shipping a coffee mug, or shipping a wedding dress, would logically cost a lot less.

Some freight companies overlook the dim divisor used to calculate parcels’ dimensions, hence charging their clients higher shipping fees. It’s important to know the dimensions of your goods before having them shipped. Luckily, freight services such as UPS and FedEx allow you to maximize your parcels’ density through their package optimization services. (Source)

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