• NC Software is proud to announce the release of APDL - Airline Pilot Logbook version 10.0. Click here to view APDL on the Apple App store and install now.

Lagos, Nigeria

AV8TR70

Active member
Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Posts
41
Total Time
2500+
I have an offer to fly a Hawker 800XP in Lagos, company condo on Victoria island, car, phone, etc. Any thoughts? Advice?
 

K.V.

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 14, 2003
Posts
240
Total Time
a lot
Man, I know times are tough right now but damn....Lagos? That place is a sh!t hole at best. Is it for Arik Air?
 

AV8TR70

Active member
Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Posts
41
Total Time
2500+
I agree times are bad, but this Hawker flys 80% of the month around the Middle East and Europe. Plus the pay is 2X what I was making state side flying the same model, and I have to put food on the table. Lagos might not be the right choice but when HR sent my contract over for review the lady told me they had over 500 resumes the first two days. So its real bad for Hawker guys, along with everyone else.
 

K.V.

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 14, 2003
Posts
240
Total Time
a lot
I understand. Good luck and be safe!
 

30West

NARF!
Joined
Feb 16, 2006
Posts
533
Total Time
@8000
Just don't try and cross the bridge over to Victoria Island at night, and you'll be fairly safe. Bandits sometimes set up blockades on them at night.
It also stinks like hell from the burning and festering garbage, polluted water, excrement and I'm sure the occasional rotting corpse by the roadside. But you go nose deaf after about 3 or 4 days so you get used to that eventually.
 
Last edited:

SIR MILO

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 27, 2004
Posts
66
Total Time
934298
Some of are guys who fly the 400's from Horizon have basically stated, "the paychecks come through for pilots because they need the pilots, no comment on everything else." So if the money is good enough to compromise everything else, go for it. Doubt they have pilots showing up in Lagos from all those resumes, saying there ready to work now.
 

AV8TR70

Active member
Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Posts
41
Total Time
2500+
Ok my contract came in today. I was wrong about lagos, that's where the company main office is. I'll be based in Abuja at the Nhamdi Azikiwe International airport. Sounds alot better...
 

NAAPilot

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 16, 2006
Posts
123
Total Time
8000
Having flown pretty much all over the world, I have to say that Lagos is probably the worst place I have ever been. We used to stay at the Eko hotel on Victoria Island and for those of you who have done it, the drive from the airport to the hotel is something you won't soon forget. Very dangerous and dirty place. On the other hand, I flew a trip out of Abuja once and have to say it was night and day difference from Lagos. Abuja was a very nice, clean and civilized city. I was only there about 30 hours, but was pretty impressed. Good luck either way!
 

crosscut

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 20, 2002
Posts
238
Total Time
.
I agree times are bad, but this Hawker flys 80% of the month around the Middle East and Europe. Plus the pay is 2X what I was making state side flying the same model, and I have to put food on the table. Lagos might not be the right choice but when HR sent my contract over for review the lady told me they had over 500 resumes the first two days. So its real bad for Hawker guys, along with everyone else.


Just know that those expat contracts are only as good as they are enforceable... It is not uncommon for Arik to be a month+ behind on paychecks etc. with no recourse on your part whatsoever. Likewise, if they decide they no longer need you, your two-year contract could easily become a two-month contract. And again, no recourse. You should talk to someone already there first. No malaria/yellow fever in the world in worth the extra money you "might" be making. If you already have a job in the states, however stable or low-paying, I would not recommend leaving. A word to the wise
 
Last edited:

overseas boy

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 5, 2006
Posts
118
Total Time
Troll
Lagos is the only destination we get an armed escort to and from the airport to the hotel and we go to some "dodgy" destinations.
Happiness is V1 at Lagos.....!!!!
 

B727FA

Bring your own FOD bucket
Joined
Mar 28, 2006
Posts
635
Total Time
Enough
I'm always amazed at how much vitriol is spilled for LOS. Yes, it's ugly, stinky, dicey at night, but there aren't open sewers flowing in the streets everywhere; corpses on the roadside? Come on. Get your yellow fever shot, be mindful of the mosquito feeding times, carry your DEET and you'll likely avoid malaria. Stay on VI or at your hotel and it's fine.

To the orig poster: does your contract offer a driver? That's a must no matter what.

All that said, Abuja is night-and-day from LOS. Other posters have commented on that, too. It's a bright, clean, engineered city. Unlike Brasilia (which is about the same age), people actually want to live in Abuja! That's a good gig.

I've heard overall good things about the ex-pat pilots for Arik. I know they have a set rotation of (I believe) 3 months on-1 off. Most of their middle-mgt are ex-pat and on similar skeds. I know my mgr is English and he's 5/2.

Arik isn't like the other Nigerian airlines of the past (and present). Other carriers in Nigeria I'd not trust as far as I can throw them. Out of 26 certified carriers 14 months ago, 7 are left. Bellview just collapsed a few weeks ago. You won't see me on those flights; but any Arik plane (Arik, Denim, or HiFly) I'd trust.

Good luck in your decision.
 

maxfly1

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2006
Posts
17
Total Time
11K+
I agree with B727FA, Lagos is not the best, Abuja is better, Calabar is actually a resort, but you can find your fun in clubbing or golfing right here by the Airport in Ikeja. Beer and food is cheap at golf clubs. A driver is a must or you won't get too far. There were cases of guys, not gals, being afraid to get out of the bus when they first arrive at Lagos. Guys left within days or weeks.
As for Arik, we don't even get a cop with us in the bus every time we go to and from the airport. Day or night. Arik has growing pains like every other new airline, but so far it's the most successful. On Q400 guys were on payroll for a year without flying and sitting at home. With new airplanes coming there will be more jobs.
 

2Green

Active member
Joined
Jan 11, 2003
Posts
38
Total Time
6000
hi

Abuja is a piece of cake compared to Lagos. It's much cleaner and a little more orderly. However, armed robbers do set up shop from time to time on the airport road. I know some S. African pilots that were robbed going to work very early in the morning in Abuja. If you get held up, just give em the money and you'll be on your way. It's not like S Africa where they rob and then kill you for the heck of it.

500 resumes is laughable. Out of that I bet they couldn't find 10 that would actually do the job. It takes a very open mind to be there.

Your contract is not enforceable by either party. It's a general outline of what you can both expect. Dont' take it too seriously but definitely outline pay, secured furnished housing with SatTV/internet, car w/driver, maid, time off with ticket home. If I think of more I'll send it to you.

I have been there for two years.

Situational awareness and working TCAS are a must. Pilots will lie on position reports and controllers are not competent.

Never seen or smelled dead bodies. Don't cross the VI bridge at night in Lagos.

It's funny the crews I see come through Lagos. They act as if they are in a war zone. Many will get on a bus with the curtains pulled and go to the hotel. I drive myself. Most people don't but that's just me.

Going to Africa is one of the best experiences of my life; but I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. You'll understand if you go.
 

AV8TR70

Active member
Joined
Jan 20, 2006
Posts
41
Total Time
2500+
Update: I've been flying over here for six months now and have to say its nothing like many of the post on here. Abuja is a piece of cake. The city is growing, which brings along pains. I've been to three different super market and the food is fine. Its not Publix or Winn Dixie but not bad either. I do have a driver but me and the other pilots drive ourselves many times with no problems. Its our choice. Living is fine also. The apartment is fine, power out only as long as it takes for the generator to kick in. Internet is slowwwwww but live able. The people on the most part are nice but remember everyone seems to have an edge to make money off of you. I've come across two movie theaters and a couple of shopping malls, even dry cleaning, which takes fours days. The pay is good and on time and as long as things keeping going well I see no problem in the future working here.
 

kevin_p

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 24, 2002
Posts
82
Total Time
4150
I started a contract job out of Lagos in March, and I agree that is hasn't been anywhere near as bad as I had feared. I haven't felt unsafe at all, nor have I gotten sick (yet). Yes, the traffic is horrible and a driver is a must (for me anyway), but we have a good crew house close the Sheraton and it has worked out pretty well. I wouldn't want to drive all the way from the airport to Victoria Island every day. We are careful not to expose ourselves to unnecessary risks, but overall I don't think it's that bad. Maybe it's just my location in Ikeja, but there aren't normally any sewer or trash smells. I've only been bothered by that once when I was at the airport and happened to be downwind of a burning trashpile. Actually, the people here are a bit "aromatic", so that would be my biggest complaint.

It's true that the contract is just a suggestion for both parties. It's good to have one, but there's really nothing you can do if they choose not to abide by it. It works both ways, though. If you choose to leave before the contract is up, there's not much they can do about it other than not pay you. It has taken some effort to adjust to the local business culture and ways of doing things, but the pay checks have come on time, and my employer seems to make a decent effort to ensure we're happy.

The "Welcome to Lagos" video on YouTube is pretty interesting and I'm sure is an accurate portrayal of the lives of a handful of people in Lagos. Keep in mind, however, that Lagos is huge and has vastly different neighborhoods and suburbs. It would be a mistake to think that all of Lagos is like the scenes they show on there. It would be like making a documentary of NYC and following around some homeless person scavenging for food at the dump. Yes it exists, but it's not the way everyone lives.

Basically, if you have an open mind and are adventurous, Nigeria isn't bad. Poverty is rampant, but the people I have met and worked with have all been great. I would prefer to work here and risk some petty theft rather than work in an area where I am considered an infidel and a terrorism target.

AV8TR70: PM me if you plan on overnighting in Lagos and we can meet for a drink or have you over to the house for dinner.
 
Top