A resident or someone
who frequents the capital city often, will notice the constant and continuous
innovations, renovation and constructions of structures, roads, bridges, and
other edifices in the city. It is very possible to get lost due to the constant
modification of roads and structures.
According to a lot of
people, living in Abuja is quite expensive. How true is this perception?
It all depends on where
you dwell in the city. There are areas where accommodations are cut-throat, e.g.,
Asokoro and Maitama, and places where it is quite cheap, e.g., Jikwoyi and
The true cost of living
in Abuja is not only determined by the price tag on houses and lands for sale
or rent, but also on other major factors in subsequent paragraphs below.


Someone who doesn’t
have a car and living in Abuja, compared to someone who does, might find
commuting from one part of the metropolis to the other quite exorbitant. There
was a time when fares were very cheap, regardless of where you are living in
the city. You can take a cab from one end of the capital to the other and you
won’t spend up to N3,000, but, now, things are not the way they used to be.
People do not charter cabs as much as they would have loved to, due to the
charges involved. Many of these cab-drivers have also stopped looking for
single passengers. They commute about five passengers at a time from one
location to the other.
People working in
private companies or civil servants who live in the suburbs and work in the
urban areas spend a lot of money getting to work, and returning home daily. Most
times, they spend nothing less than between N5, 000 and N15, 000 for fares
monthly. This dampen the spirits of those who earn before N30, 000 and those
that earn more still complain.
Many of this people get
to their houses as late as eleven in the night daily and they still have to set
out for work the next day before six a.m. It is a very vicious circle. There
are some who would rather stay back in areas that they are working with friends
and colleagues, and return home to the rural areas during the weekends. This
help them to cut down cost effectively.


We all need food to
grow. Residents in the urban areas such as Jabi and Garki have access to posh
eateries e.g., Mama Cass and Tantalizer, restaurants e.g., Jevinik, Nkoyo,
Charcoal Grill, e.t.c.,and other food outlets e.g., Village Kitchen and
Pizzarama,where you spend nothing less than N5, 000 for a meal. Unlike those in
the suburbs, where there are less posh restaurants, and manageable eateries
with names that are unknown and unattractive, e.g., Madam Stainless, Edo
restaurant, and several nameless food joints.
People with very deep
pockets rarely cook in their homes. They frequent these classy places for their
daily meals, but, for those who prefer to prepare their own meals, they go to
the local market to purchase what they need. Market places differs in the
capital city. Sales of foodstuff in the urban areas are pretty high, whilst in
the suburbs, they are relatively cheaper.
Many Abuja resident
living in the highbrow areas travel down to market places as far as Orange
Market in Maraba, or the Nyanya or Karu markets to buy cheaper foodstuffs. Why?
A basket of tomato sold in the urban areas is between N10, 000 and N18, 000,
but, in the suburbs, it is between N6,000 and N9, 000. A kilo of frozen chicken
in the classy areas goes for nothing less than N2,500, per kilogram, but, in
the rural areas, it is N1, 500 per kilo, and at times, you can get a lower
price, between N1, 200 and N1, 400. You can get a tubers of yam set in six and
seven for as high as N3, 000 in places like Asokoro, but as low as N1,600 in
areas like Nyanya.
Those with their own
vehicles find it more profitable coming to the rural market places, whilst
those who charter cabs or use the public transport find it stressful, but, the
purchase of low-cost foodstuff most times, overwhelms the pressure of getting
to these markets.


A visit to the clothing
stores, e.g., PEP store, Mimsafrik, Toprano, Chinero Nnamani, Clinique, Diva
House, Eternaigems, Grey Velvet, e.t.c., and several shopping malls, e.g.,
Garki Shopping Complex and the Asokoro Shopping Mall, in the metropolis, will
give you the range of prices of cloths and wears, which is as low as N5, 500
for a one attire and as high as N25, 000 for one outfit. These apparels are
quite expensive for those living a regimented lifestyle, unlike people who can
afford to threw away their cash at the blink of an eye.
Down at the suburbs,
cloths are sold at a cheaper rate, ranging from grade A to china made attires. You
can get an outfit for as low as N500 and as high as N3, 000. Markets like the
Nyanya and Karu markets open every day, but, Wednesdays are the major market
days. A visit to these markets will introduce you to varieties of commodities,
aside cloths, such as, provisions, foodstuffs, children toys, electronics, and
other things. Some people raised the suspicion that things purchased at these
markets are resold in the urban areas at a higher rate.
As a resident or
visitor in Abuja, patronizing these markets help you to save cost and spend


There are several
places you can catch your fun in the city and in the outskirts of Abuja, as
long as you can afford it. Those who have free flow of cash find it easy to
frequent the clubs e.g., The Bank, Aquarium, Clemmies, Fizion and Club Xlensio,
bars and restaurants e.g., Sofa Lounge and The Caribbean, cinemas e.g., Silverbird
and Ceddi Plaza and other entertainment spots, e.g., Ketchup, Secret Garden and
Zander’s Place.
Peoplewho are used to
making budgets with their cash, plan and fit into their schedules ‘fun-time’
periods. Many set monies aside for a designated time in order
to be able to give themselves a treat and for those with families, they take
their spouses and children on outings, to places such as, The Millennium Park,
Silverbird Cinema, Yahuza Suya Spot, Grand Square, Shoprite, Jabi Lake and so
many other places to have fun.


Provision of good
roads, hospitals, schools, electricity, clean water, security, bridges, and
other necessary services and facilities across the capital city is an ongoing
There are parts of the
city that enjoy a large percentage of these conveniences, but, improvements are
being made on all fronts.
Residents in areas that
do not have constant power supply use alternatives such as generators,
inverters and solar power. It all depends on how green your bank accounts are.
There are two dams in
Abuja, the Usman Dam and the Jabi Dam, supported by several boreholes, they
supply water to the metropolis. It is sad that most part of the capital city
isn’t connected to the water board. Many people dig boreholes in their houses
to get clean water. Those who cannot afford it dig wells and the rest who do
not have funds to do this buy water from those who push trucks filled with
about twelve gallons, going from street to street.
Those who live close to
untarred roads suffer the muddy mess during the raining season and the
incessant dust-storms during the dry season. If you own a car, you can easily
block the dust by closing the windows of your vehicles, but, for those who
commute by cabs, buses and tricycles, they do not have such pleasure.
Living in Abuja comes
with its joy and adjustments. You do not need to be wealthy and famous to live
in the capital city. There is a place for everyone in the metropolis.

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