Latinamerica Collection
Tourist Information About Brazil

Passport and Visas
The following information is subject to change and should be verified by contacting the nearest diplomatic or consular office of Brazil. Violations of entry and exit requirements may result in serious penalties.



i. United States Tourists
A valid U.S. passport is required for all citizens regardless of age in order to enter Brazil and to return to the United States. American citizens must assure that their passports are valid for a period of six months after their expected date of departure from Brazil and are in good condition; this is a requirement of Brazil. Certificates of Naturalization, birth certificates, driver's licenses and photocopies are NOT accepted as alternative travel documents by authorities in the U.S. or Brazil.

 

Brazilian dual citizens may not enter Brazil with a tourist visa and are required to present a Brazilian passport upon entry. However, in this case of dual citizenship, all U.S. citizens must use a U.S. passport when returning to the U.S.

 

Tourists visas to Brazil ARE required and must be in possession at the time of entry into Brazil. Visas may NOT be acquired after entry into Brazil, such as in the airport upon arrival. Tourist visas must be acquired beforehand through a Brazilian embassy or consulate by application and must be used within 90 days of issuance or will no longer be valid. An official yellow fever vaccination certificate is required if any at-risk countries were visited within 90 days of your entrance into Brazil. There is a fee involved with this application process. Visit the Brazilian Embassy website or contact them directly in person or by telephone to begin the application process.

 

All U.S. tourists traveling within Brazil should have in their possession at all times either the original passport or a photocopy of the information page as well as a photocopy of the visa stamp showing date of entry into Brazil.

 

Any person under the age of eighteen not traveling with BOTH parents or legal guardian(s) is required to submit a notarized letter of consent signed by the non-accompanying parent(s) or legal guardian(s) authorizing the issuance of a tourist visa. A copy of the minor's birth certificate as well as any applicable official guardianship documentation is also required.



ii. Canadian Tourists
A valid Canadian passport is required for all citizens regardless of age in order to enter Brazil and to return to Canada. Canadian citizens must assure that their passports are valid for a period of six months after their expected date of departure from Brazil and are in good condition; this is a requirement of Brazil. Certificates of Naturalization, birth certificates, Certificates of Canadian Citizenship, driver's licenses and photocopies are NOT accepted as alternative travel documents by authorities in Canada or Brazil.

 

Brazilian dual citizens may not enter Brazil with a tourist visa and are required to present a Brazilian passport upon entry. However, in this case of dual citizenship, all Canadian citizens must use a Canadian passport when returning to the Canada.

 

Tourists visas to Brazil ARE required and must be in possession at the time of entry into Brazil. Visas may NOT be acquired after entry into Brazil, such as in the airport upon arrival. Tourist visas must be acquired beforehand through a Brazilian embassy or consulate by application and must be used within 90 days of issuance or will no longer be valid. An official yellow fever vaccination certificate is required if any at-risk countries were visited within 90 days of your entrance into Brazil. There is a fee involved with this application process. Visit the Brazilian Embassy website or contact them directly in person or by telephone to begin the application process.

 

All Canadian tourists traveling within Brazil should have in their possession at all times either the original passport or a photocopy of the information page as well as a photocopy of the visa stamp showing date of entry into Brazil.

 

Any person under the age of eighteen not traveling with BOTH parents or legal guardian(s) is required to submit a notarized letter of consent signed by the non-accompanying parent(s) or legal guardian(s) authorizing the issuance of a tourist visa. A copy of the minor's birth certificate as well as any applicable official guardianship documentation is also required.



iii. European Tourists
A valid European passport is required for all citizens regardless of age in order to enter Brazil and to return to Europe. European citizens must assure that their passports are valid for a period of six months after their expected date of departure from Brazil and are in good condition; this is a requirement of Brazil. Certificates of Naturalization, birth certificates, driver's licenses and photocopies are NOT accepted as alternative travel documents by authorities in Brazil.

 

Brazilian dual citizens may not enter Brazil with a tourist visa and are required to present a Brazilian passport upon entry. However, in this case of dual citizenship, all European citizens must use a European passport when returning to Europe.

 

Tourists visas to Brazil are not required for most western European countries. Visit the Brazilian Embassy website or contact them directly in person or by telephone to inquire whether a visa is required for your country.

 

An official yellow fever vaccination certificate is required if any at-risk countries were visited within 90 days of your entrance into Brazil.

 

All European tourists traveling within Brazil should have in their possession at all times either the original passport or a photocopy of the information page as well as a photocopy of the visa stamp showing date of entry into Brazil.

 

Any person under the age of eighteen not traveling with BOTH parents or legal guardian(s) is required to submit a notarized letter of consent signed by the non-accompanying parent(s) or legal guardian(s) authorizing the issuance of a tourist visa. A copy of the minor's birth certificate as well as any applicable official guardianship documentation is also required.



Airport Taxes and Customs
Generally speaking there is a Brazilian airport tax, but it may be included in the price of your international airline ticket. Be sure to check with your airline regarding the current tax and whether it is indeed included.



Health and Vaccinations
All tourists should be sure that their routine vaccinations are up to date whether traveling or not. This information can be found on the Centers for Disease Control website.

 

An official yellow fever vaccination certificate is required if any at-risk countries were visited within 90 days of your entrance into Brazil. Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Typhoid, and Rabies vaccinations are recommended, but not required, for all those traveling to Brazil. For more information visit the Centers for Disease Control website as well as the website of the Brazilian Embassy.

 

Malaria risk exists in the states of Acre, Rondônia, Amapá, Amazonas, Roraima, and Tocantins. Also there is a risk in arts of the states of Maranhaõ (western part), Mato Grosso (northern part), and Pará (except Belem City). There is also a risk of transmission in urban areas, including the outer portions of large cities such as Porto Velho, Boa Vista, Macapa, Manaus, Santarem, and Maraba. If you will be visiting areas with a risk of malaria infection, you should take an antimalarial drug such as atovaquone/proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine. Chloroquine is not an effective antimalarial drug in Brazil and should not be taken. Please visit the Centers for Disease Control website for more information.



Safety and Security
Brazil is a developing country, and travelers should exercise caution as criminal activity continues to be an active problem. Tourists should avoid carrying with them valuables that may jeopardize their safety.



Clothing and What to Bring
Likewise, clothing to bring can be determined in the same fashion. Always before to bring at least something both warm and cool and surprises may pop up anywhere along the way. Keep in mind also all of the different activities available when deciding on clothing (and shoes) to bring.



Currency, Banks, Credit Cards
The currency used in Brazil is called the real (BRL). In the past years the exchange rate has been roughly 2 reales for every US$.

 

A good option is to bring US$ into Brazil as they can be exchanged in the airport or banks. Upon departure, any surplus may be exchanged back. Canadian dollars may be difficult to exchange in Brazil and US$ are preferred.

 

In addition, international debit and credit cards may be used to withdraw money from local ATMs. Also, most major credit cards are accepted in Brazil, especially in tourist destinations. It is always a good idea to check with your credit card companies to find out what, if any, foreign exchange fees exist.

 

Bringing US$ traveler's checks to Brazil for exchange is also another viable option. Canadian dollar traveler's checks may be difficult to exchange and US$ traveler's checks should be used.



Taxes and Tips
Taxes are always included in the advertised prices. Restaurant tips of 10% are generally added to the bill automatically. It is also customary to tip hotel attendants US$1 for such things as helping with bags, etc.



Time Zone
The time zones used in Brazil vary from two hours before Coordinated Universal Time, or (UTC-02:00) to five hours before (UTC-05:00) though most of the country is three hours before (UTC-03:00). This means that during summer (daylight savings time) Panama is one hour ahead New York City and four hours ahead of Los Angeles.



Telephone Calls
When calling from Brazil to the United States or Canada visitors must dial the following: 0021 1 City Code Local Number.

 

When calling from Brazil to another international country visitors must dial the following: 0021 Country Code City Code Local Number.



Electricity and Voltage
Electricity in Brazil can either be 110V or 220V at 60Hz and generally uses the standard two prong flat blades or double round pin attachment plugs. Many outlets are able to accept both types of plugs though some may not have a third hole for the round ground pin. This means that standard North American devices may require a prong adapter and must also work at both given voltages. Otherwise, a voltage converter may be required.



Local Newspapers
Brazil is nearly the size of the United States and offers many dozens of newspapers in cities throughout the country. Many of these newspapers are also either available in English or are English newspapers to begin with.



Transportation and Getting Around in Brazil
i. Cars
Car rental is generally more expensive than some other options, but still exists nonetheless. Some of the major cities much more than 1,000 miles apart which makes for a very large road trip. Driving within the city is much different from driving in North America, and drivers are very aggressive and rules are not well-enforced. However, a car can be a good option when traveling a short distance out of town to visit a surrounding attraction.



ii. Taxis
Taxis in Brazil are a great option for affordable travel through the cities. Taxis are required to use a meter and must be licensed. Therefore, never enter a taxi that does not have an official number plate signifying that it is official. These taxis can be found at all taxi points in the city as well as major landmarks such as hotels and airports.



iii. Buses
Bus travel in Brazil is also a great option. The buses are very comfortable and the prices are inexpensive. The buses are non-smoking and traveler's have the option to book a more luxurious and comfortable seat for some more popular routes. The problem with buses is that because Brazil is so large, it can often take a very long time to reach your destination.



iv. Domestic Flights
Because of the huge size of Brazil, a good option for traveling through the country is by domestic flight, and recently thanks to competition the prices have come down significantly. One great option for tourists traveling to many different destinations during their trip is the air pass. This pass allows a certain number of flights in a set period of time and is only available to tourists which means it must be purchased from outside of the country.



Business Hours
Business hours may vary slightly from city to city. Generally speaking, however, stores open around 9:00AM and close anywhere from 6:00 to 8:00PM. Hours may be short on the weekends or just on Sundays. Some stores in big cities may even stay open 24 hours. Government hours are generally from 9:00AM to 6:00PM while bank hours are from 10:00AM to 4:00PM at most banks.