Confused about mobile internet in Nigeria? Don’t worry! Planning a trip shouldn’t involve figuring out phone plans. This guide makes choosing a Nigerian mobile network simple.We’ll break down the main options, compare data plans, and show you what to consider when picking the perfect fit for your Nigerian adventure. It’ll also delve deeper into the benefits of using an eSIM for your Nigerian adventure.

Mobile Internet in Nigeria

I. Mobile Internet coverage and speed in Nigeria

Figuring out phone internet in Nigeria can be tricky. This guide keeps it simple! Let’s see how good the signal is in different areas and how fast the internet can be.

1. Nigeria Mobile Internet Coverage

This guide, based on a recent Nigerian Mobile Quality Report (June 2023), breaks down everything you need to know. It will compare coverage and speed of major providers like MTN, Airtel, Globacom, and 9mobile, so you can choose the best network for a frustration-free online experience in Nigeria! 

Here are some key points:

ProviderCoverage StrengthSpeed Advantage5G AvailabilityFocusBest for
MTNStrongest, especially in citiesOften leads in terms of speedLimited rollout in major citiesReliabilityConsistent internet access
AirtelExtensive networkPotential 4G speed advantageNo launch yetUrban areasFaster 4G speeds (potential)
GlobacomCompetitive in cities, spotty in rural areasSpeed can be more variableNo launch yetAffordabilityBudget-conscious travelers
9mobilePrimarily urbanSpeed can be most variableNo launch yetUrban data plansShort-term urban stays

The findings show that MTN is the most reliable option with strong, widespread coverage, especially in cities.

2. Nigeria Mobile Internet Speed

Nigeria Median Country Speeds

Mobile internet speed in Nigeria is improving but still lags behind the global average. While specific city data is limited, it’s possible that urban centers might have slightly better speeds compared to rural areas. The latest info from the Nigeria Speed Report (January 2024) will give you key points related to it.

  • National Speed
    • Rankings vary depending on the source and date, but Nigeria’s mobile internet speed falls between 89th and 93rd globally (as of January-February 2023).
    • This means it’s slower than the global average.
    • However, there have been reports of significant improvements, with some sources mentioning speeds reaching 26.74 Mbps download (compared to the global average of 50 Mbps).
  • City Ranking
    • Major cities like Lagos might have slower speeds compared to other African capitals.

So, Nigeria’s mobile internet is getting faster, but lags behind the world average. Speeds range from 22 to 27 Mbps, good for browsing and social media, but may struggle with high-definition streaming or large downloads. And MTN is the largest mobile network operator in Nigeria, so you’ll likely have good network coverage with them.

Get more insights on Nigeria SIM Cards: Updated Prices and Where to Buy

II. Mobile Internet in Nigeria: Connection options for tourists

Navigating bustling markets or sharing unforgettable adventures – mobile internet is a must for Nigerian tourists. This guide explores your options: public WiFi, roaming, local SIM cards, and even eSIMs.

OptionProsConsPrice Range (USD)
Free WiFiAvailable att most cafes, hotels, and even some public areas.Unreliable speed and securityFree
Pocket WiFiConvenient, portable, shareable dataLimited data plans, can be expensive$10-50 per day
eSIMEasy to activate, convenient for dual SIM phonesLimited availability, requires compatible phone$10-30 for data pack
SIM CardMost affordable option, flexible data plansRequires phone unlock, registration process$5-20 for starter pack + data top-ups
RoamingFamiliar option, works immediatelyExtremely expensive data chargesVaries greatly by carrier, often hundreds of USD

For travelers in Nigeria, a local SIM card is king. It’s the most budget-friendly way to connect, offering lots of data for your money. Plus, you can choose a plan that fits your needs and easily add more data if it runs out. Easy and affordable – perfect for exploring Nigeria! Some reliable eSIM Providers/ SIM Card in Nigeria are Airalo, Holafly. All offer great rates and coverage.

  • Easy to use: An eSIM allows you to use a data plan in Nigeria without needing to swap out your physical SIM card. This can be especially useful if you travel frequently or don’t want to carry around multiple SIM cards.
  • Keep your number: With eSIM, you can use your regular phone number for calls and texts while using the eSIM for internet access.

Plan that may interest you

Nigeria eSIM 7 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 7 Days Plan
From $9.50
Nigeria eSIM 15 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 15 Days Plan
From $17.50
Nigeria eSIM 30 Days Plan
Nigeria eSIM 30 Days Plan
From $24.50

III. Mobile Internet in Nigeria rating

Mobile internet rates in Nigeria

Local SIM cards and eSIMs in Nigeria offer internet access at reasonable prices. Here’s a breakdown of typical costs for mobile data plans.

  • Pay-as-you-go: Expect to pay around $0.05 to $0.10 USD per MB. This can be a good option for very light data users, but it can get expensive quickly.
  • Monthly Plans: Prices vary depending on data allowance, but typically range from $5 to $50 USD per month. 10GB plans might cost around $15-$20 USD.
  • Unlimited Data: “Unlimited” plans in Nigeria often have a Fair Usage Policy (FUP) with a data cap after which speeds are throttled. These plans can range from $30 to $50 USD per month, with the FUP cap potentially around 125GB.
  • 5G Plans: 5G is still relatively new in Nigeria, so pricing information might be limited. However, expect 5G plans to be more expensive than regular data plans, potentially starting from $40 USD per month.
  • Short Term Plans: These plans are designed for short stays in Nigeria and might offer data valid for a week or a month. Prices can vary, but expect them to be on the higher end compared to regular monthly plans, potentially starting from $10-$20 USD for a week’s worth of data.

Armed with this knowledge of mobile internet rates in Nigeria, you can now confidently choose the plan that best suits your data needs and budget. Happy exploring!

GiGaGo Partner & Enjoy your Benefit

Switch to digital with

IV. Best mobile operators in Nigeria

This guide will break down the top contenders, highlighting their strengths to help you select the perfect mobile network for your Nigerian adventure.

OperatorPrice Range (USD/Month)Typical Data Plans (GB)CoverageAdditional Features
MTN Nigeria$5 – $501 – 125+ (unlimited with FUP)WildesteSIM available, widest network coverage
Airtel Nigeria$5 – $401 – 100+ (unlimited with FUP)Strong 4GLimited eSIM availability, 4G+ network
Glo Nigeria$5 – $301 – 40+ (unlimited with FUP)GoodMore affordable options, international calling deals

Recommendation: Choose MTN! Widest network coverage keeps you connected everywhere. Generous data plans (even “unlimited” with a high cap) and eSIM compatibility (unlike some competitors) make it a worry-free choice.

Heading to Nigeria but worried about mobile cost? Check our guide about Data Roaming in Nigeria: #1 Helpful Guide for Travelers to get more useful tips!


What is the difference between a SIM Card and an eSIM?

A traditional SIM card is a physical chip inserted into your phone. An eSIM is a digital version embedded in your phone, eliminating the need for a physical card.

Does Nigeria offer eSIMs?

Yes, but not all operators do. MTN currently offers confirmed eSIM availability.

How can I activate a Nigerian SIM card?

The activation process varies by operator. You’ll typically need your passport and a registration process.

What’s an FUP (Fair Usage Policy)?

“Unlimited” plans often have FUPs. It means your internet speed slows down (throttles) after exceeding a certain data limit.

VI. Conclusions

Skip the expensive roaming charges! Nigeria eSIM keeps you connected for less. Explore, find your way around, and share your trip with friends and family – all with affordable and reliable internet access right on your phone.  This convenient option lets you stay connected without breaking the bank!