The study was undertaken to investigate how willing would farmers be to pay for agricultural extension service in Nigeria. A multistage random sampling technique was used to select 268 respondents. Results showed that most farmers (95.1 per cent) were willing to pay for improved extension service as long as the service remained relevant to their needs. Farmers were willing to pay N1000 annually as their own share of the service cost. The most important factors that influenced farmers' willingness to pay were states of origin, items originally paid for, major occupation, minor occupation, number of years in school and sale of farm produce. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.