1. When seeking an apartment, do it during the rains Looking for a new place can be a difficult and discouraging endeavor especially in a city like Lagos. However, when you have your money ready and you have chosen whether to settle on the Island or mainland, then the next thing to work with is the rainy season. The rains reveals alot of secrets regarding where you can live. It tells you of the roads it floods, how motorable they can be. It also tells you of the power supply, if its an area where when it rains, power supply is interrupted for weeks. More to the rain advantage, is the revelation of your rooms. You can tell if the roofs are leaking, else someday you might wake only to find yourself afloat in the streets. Now if you find a place that is nice and is not threatened by the rains, do not waste time in taking it, because it would shock you as to how many others are after the same apartment.
2. Look both ways when crossing a one-way street. Like in New York, this is not just generally a safe thing to do, because in Lagos you can’t be sure of which direction the motorcyclists popularly called Okada will come at you. Never assume that the lanes are all clear, these bikers can even fall out of the sky.
3. When in traffic be sure to wind up Lagos is a city that can only be defined as mercurial, anything can happen at anytime. There are so many reports of people having their bangles and neck-chains stolen in traffic. If you are one of those who love to put their hands out while driving, then you might want to think again, because that gold-plated Rolex of yours might be the target.
4. Be very sensitive and watchful of any environment you find yourself.
5. Carry cash. Lagos is still evolving and not all bars, shops and restaurants use cards. The ATM might also not be a best bet due to some cases of network, or no funds among other excuses. Though there is a fervent push to run a cashless society, still one just has to anticipate certain unforeseen circumstances to avoid embarrassment.
6. Learn to eat and walk Like in every other mega city, eat and walk is a key rule. This is because the very busy nature of the city might not avail you the chance to have a proper meal setting. Even at your lunch break, you might have to finish the meat on your way back to the office. Eating on a bus is very common, with traffic sometimes, you might not make it to a warm dinner. But to save yourself the ulcer you must have to eat on the go.
7. Match the speed “There is no ‘Sme-Sme’ or ‘Dulling’ in Lagos”, is a popular parlance in Lagos city. The city is ever busy and to a great extent always in a hurry, so if you can’t walk as fast as the rest other pedestrians, then go on and stand by the sides. In Lagos everyone wants to get home on time, wants to be at work on time, wants to leave the market on time and every second extra from their specified time, seems like ages.
8. Study the rush hours You can’t just leave your house at anytime you wish, especially if your event is for a fixed time and you must go by public transport. The early bird often gets the bigger worms, you must leave before the normal time. Leaving the house before 6am is a plus, leaving work at 4pm will go a long way. If your event is for 10am, then leave your home by 8; taking into consideration the weather conditions.
9. Know your alternate routes If you must study the maps then do, if you must get the direction app, that might help too. Somehow you just need to know how the roads link, it is not hard to find yourself on the wrong side of a one way drive. You can’t totally rely on directions from people so you need to go out more and explore this Island called Lagos. Would help you beat traffic and if you ever have to escape for any reason, your knowledge of the routes will be instrumental.
10. Learn the difference between being rude and just being Lagosian You must clearly make distinctions between a person who is rude and another who is just being Lagosian. There is a tendency for Lagosians to speak atop their voices, and probably have their eyes wide open in the course, but might not necessarily mean that they are trying to be haughty. Learn most of the city’s terms and slang that could give you easy access to the peoples heart. Like they say, you win a man’s heart when you speak his language.