Drawing on fieldwork with irregular migrants in Hamburg, this chapter addresses some epistemological challenges concerning the use of waiting as an analytical lens in ethnographic research on irregular migration. The chapter explores some possible ways to engage with these challenges, especially how the temporal logic of waiting, when used as an analytic optic, intersects with the territorial imaginary of methodological nationalism. Waiting, as a temporal imaginary, tends to be structured in terms of an orientation towards the awaited future (object), and to entail a conceptualisation of the present as a condition of lack in relation to this future. I argue that this structure makes the analytical lens susceptible to methodological nationalism. I suggest that to further the critical potential of waiting as an analytical lens, waiting should be conceptualised in terms of temporal heterogeneity and relationality.