Tools and resources to help your company expand globally

flag Brazil Brazil: Practical information

In this page: Accommodation | Eating Out | Getting Around | Time and Time Difference | Climate | Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems | Paying | Speaking | Emergency Numbers | Communications

 

Accommodation

Youth hostels
Basic comfort, but this varies from one hostel to another. Typically comprised of dormitories, sometimes includes smaller bedrooms.
HostelWorld
Pousadas
Tourist hotels in Brazil, all ranges and all prices.
AirBnB
Hotels
European standards, only in large cities.
Hoteis.com
Hotel Rules
The prices (taxes included) are usually given per night and per person, breakfast included. It is advisable to check with the hotel keeper. In the low season, you can negotiate 10 to 20% off the basic price in pousadas.
 

Price Indications

Economy Room 10-30 BRL
Medium Price Room 40-100 BRL
Good Quality Room 200 BRL and more

Source: Lonely Planet

Return to top

Eating Out

Categories of Restaurant
 
  • Lunchonete
Small, basic establishment, found on every street corner, selling fruit juices, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, some snacks.
  • Restaurante
Various ranges at different prices, Brazilian and international cuisine.
  • Rodizio
"Eat as much as you like" formula, very popular in Brazil. It may be grilled meat (churrascaria), pizzas, sushi.
Rules For Eating Out
Restaurants are open all day, from noon to midnight.
 

Price Indications

Economy Meal 5-10 BRL
Medium Price Meal 10-30 BRL
Good Quality Meal 50 BRL and more
 
Food Specialties
Staples of the Brazilian diet include: arroz (white rice), feijão (black beans), farofa (cassava flour), carne (beef), peixe (fish) and galinha (chicken). Feijoada, Brazil’s national dish, is a stew of pork and black beans.

Brazil’s large size has allowed for a great culinary diversity. The food of the northern region is heavily influenced by the culture of the indigenous peoples who lived there before the arrival of the Portuguese and includes many root vetegables and fruits (such as the açaí berry). On the northeast coast, the cuisine has a more African flavour, including chilies, spices and dendê oil (palm oil). Moqueca, a sort of sea-food based sauce or stew, is a specialty of Bahia. Acarajé, composed of peeled red beans, fried in palm oil and stuffed with vatapa (dried shrimp, with chili and tomato), is sold by the Baianos on street corners. In Minas Gerais, they prepare ‘comida mineira’, which is pork and vegetable based. Two specialties include kuiabo (a sort of bean) and tutu (fried bean paste). In the south, ‘comida gaucha’ is prepared, with a heavy use of meat.
Drinks
Brazilians are very fond of beer. Cachaça, a sugar cane spirit, is a strong liqueur of which there are many varieties. As the cheapest and most common alcohol in Brazil, Cachaça is the basis of many delicious cocktails-including the famous caïpirinha. Wine is not as common and is generally only served in international restaurants.
Dietary Restrictions
There are no dietary restrictions in the country.
Table Manners
Continental. Tips are optional but strongly advised according to the quality of the service and the friendliness of the waiter; about 5 to 10% of the bill.

Return to top

Getting Around

Means of Transport Recommended in Town

Recommendation
The Metro is an efficient means of transport in large cities. Taxi drivers speak very little English, Spanish or French, but it is enough to state the place where you want to go. Women travelling alone or those traveling late at night should ask for the taxi's official number. In the daytime, outside the shanty towns, buses present no danger- you should just have your destination confirmed by the 'cobrador', the ticket inspector or another passenger. A bus journey costs 2 BRL, as opposed to 12 on average for a 10 to 15 minute taxi ride.
Maps of Urban Networks
Plan of the São Paulo metro
Plan of the Rio network
Plan of the Brasilia network
Urban Transport Agencies
São Paulo metro
Brasiliametro
Metros
Find an Itinerary
Finding an itinerary in São Paulo
Taxi Companies
Taxi agency in Rio
 

Transportation From Airport to City Centre:


Airport

Distance

Taxi

Bus

Train

Car Rental
São Paulo - Guarulhos Intl (GRU) 28 km / 18 miles BRL 85 / 35-60 min BRL 30 / 45-60 min - Available
Rio de Janeiro - Galeão Intl (GIG) 18 km / 11 miles USD 15 / 20 min USD 2.50 - Available
 

Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

Recommendation
The safest and fastest method of transportation is the airplane. Prices are within European standards. There is an airport tax for travelers leaving Brazil by plane, which has to be paid in local currency at the day's rate. Unless this is paid, a boarding card is not issued. If you have time and a more limited budget, there is an excellent bus network all over the country. Train networks are almost nonexistent.
Rail Companies
SuperVia
 

Airlines

Name Type Domestic Flights International Flights
TAM Major company Yes Yes
GOL Low cost company Yes No

You Can Consult The EU Air Safety List. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

 
 
 

Travelling By Yourself

Recommendation
Brazil has an extensive road network over 1.5 million kilometres, but only 10% is asphalted. Expressways are rare, with roads in bad condition and very few road signs outside towns. Be careful and avoid driving at night.
Driver's License
Foreign driver's licenses are accepted but it is preferable to have an international license.
Conditions For Renting a Vehicle
You have to be 21, or even 25 for certain companies, you must have a credit card in your name and a valid driver's license either from your own country or an international one.
Rental Agencies
Localiza
Avis Brazil
Tolls or Taxes
There are practically no tolls, just on the very large main roads in the States of Rio and São Paulo.
Road Maps
Road maps by State
Find an Itinerary
Addresses and itineraries
Traffic Conditions Online
Traffic conditions in São Paulo
Parking Facilities
Rarely guarded by an officially designated agent. Free parking places in town and meeting places are often "guarded" by children who have no other source of income. It is highly recommended that you leave them some small change (from 25 centavos to 1 real) when you leave the spot. For a few reals more, some of them may wash your car.
 

Rules of the Road

Minimum Driving Age
18
Side of the Road For Driving
Right
Speed Limits
80km/h on most roads, from 45 to 80km/h in town.
Safety Belts
Obligatory and liable to a fine.
Permitted Amount of Alcohol in the Blood
0.6 g/liter of blood.
National Roads Organizations
Brazilian roads

Return to top

Time and Time Difference

Current Local Time
It is %T:%M %A In Recife, Brasilia, Rio, Sao Paulo, Porto Alegre
It is %T:%M %A In Salvador, Fortaleza
It is %T:%M %A In Manaus
Summer Time
Summer time from October to February.
 

Map of the Time Zone

Time zone

Return to top

Climate

 
Type of Climate
Brazil is largely tropical, but there are five different climatic regions. The climate is very mild in Sao Paulo and Brasilia, on average 19°C, but it is considerably warmer in Rio de Janeiro. It is best to visit the south of Brazil between September and November. The tropical climate in the north allows visiting all year, but be careful of the rainy season from December to March and the very high temperatures which go with it. The ideal time to visit Amazonia is the dry season, from June to September.
For Further Information
National Meteorological Institute (Inmet)
 

Average Annual Temperatures and Rainfall

 

Climate

Return to top

Electrical Standards and Measurement Systems

System of Measurement Used
Metric system
Unit of Measurement of Temperature
Degrees Celsius (°C)
 

Use our service Measurement Converter.

 
Electricity
 
  • Voltage
110-220 according to the region, with a two pin plug.
  • Frequency
60 Hz
Type of Electric Socket
Type A&B, C
Type of Telephone Socket
US RJ-11, Brazilian
DVD Zoning
Zone 4

Return to top

Paying

Domestic Currency
Brazilian Real
ISO Code
BRL
To Obtain Domestic Currency
Foreign currency is rarely accepted. There are ATMs which take foreign cards in towns throughout the country. You should plan to have cash on you when you go to more isolated places, such as seaside villages, parks or rural areas.
Possible Means of Payment
Credit cards are often taken in large cities, but usually not elsewhere. Only 27% of the country’s payments are made by credit card. Traveler's checks are accepted in banks and some large hotels in Rio and São Paulo. Cash is the easiest means of payment when traveling. Debit/credit cards are useful for those with bank accounts in Brazil.
 

To Find a Cash Machine Where You Need, Use the ATM locator

 

Return to top

Speaking

Official Language
Portuguese
Other Languages Spoken
English is the most commonly spoken foreign language in Brazil. Spanish is generally understood by the Brazilians and French is spoken by around 570,000 people across the country.
Business Language
Portuguese, English and Spanish.
Getting Some Knowledge
Use travlang.
Free Translation Tools
Lexilogos : Online dictionary
IATE : EU dictionary

Return to top

 

Emergency Numbers

Police 190
Ambulance 192
Firemen 193

Return to top

Communications

Quality of Communications
Good quality; telephone boxes in all urban areas, and the mobile telephone network covers all the inhabited areas of the country.
Telephone Codes
To Make a Call From Brazil, Dial 00
To Make a Call to in Brazil, Dial +55
Number of Digits of National Telephone Numbers
Use the operator code (021 or 023), then the State code (unless you are phoning inside the State), then the 8 digit number.
Mobile Telephone Standards
The network accepts bi-band telephones. You can buy a local chip without a subscription.
National Mobile Phone Operators
Tim, Claro, Vivo, Oi.
 

Availability of Internet

Internet Suffix
.br
National Internet Access Providers
Universo On Line, TERRA
Access in Public Places
Internet access points, free or chargeable, in Internet cafés in all urban areas.
Access in Hotels
In most hotels except those in the lowest price range.

Return to top

Any Comment About This Content? Report It to Us.

 

Learn more about Travel in Brazil on Globaltrade.net, the Directory for International Trade Service Providers.

© Export Entreprises SA, All Rights Reserved.
Latest Update: June 2022