Getting around Brazil is not a problem if you know the best transport options. See the best Brazil attractions in style or through bus, subway, or taxi.
In 2016, 6.6 million people visited Brazil. As the most popular destination in Latin America, it’s easy to see why so many travelers want to cross Brazil off their bucket lists. Brazil is jam-packed with amazing attractions. But if you haven’t visited Brazil before, it can be difficult to know how you’ll travel around this incredible country. Luckily, we’ve got everything you need to know about your transport options, so you can get the most out of all the Brazil attractions on your way. Ready? Let’s get started.
Local Transport in Brazil
Brazil’s local transport is easy to navigate and inexpensive. When you’re visiting local Brazil attractions, here are a few options you can use in most cities:
Taxis are reasonably priced in Brazil. They’re also your best option when you need to get around the city at night. In cities, taxis will have meters starting at approximately R$5.20. You’ll pay approximately R$2 per kilometer, although this will rise on weekends and nights. In small towns, you’ll often need to negotiate with taxi drivers before your ride, since taxis usually don’t have meters. For this reason, it’s best to do your research or talk to locals to find out how much you should be paying before you agree to the ride. Keep a map close by or use Google Maps to make sure you don’t get taken for the wrong kind of ride.
Both Sao Paulo and Rio have incredible metro systems. The metro in Rio was expanded for the Olympic Games in 2016. The metro is a cheap, safe, and efficient way to explore large cities. In Sao Paulo, one-way fares are approximately R$3.50 and in Rio, they’re approximately R$3.70.
One of the best ways to get to know a Brazilian city? Jump on a local bus. With just a few dollars and a map in your hand, you can easily get an overview of the town. Most Brazilians use the bus to get to and from work, so local bus services are easy to navigate. The buses have a comprehensive network of routes and come frequently. Expect to pay between R$2.50 and R$3.70 one-way. Usually, you’ll get on the front of the city buses and leave from the back. Sometimes, the reverse will be true. Money collectors usually sit at turnstiles inside the entrance of the bus. Don’t take your valuables with you on buses as crime can be an issue in Brazil. Minibuses have recently seen an increase in attacks, so you may want to think twice about taking minibusses catering to tourists.
When you’ve just completed a long-haul flight, the last thing you want to do is compete for a taxi or figure out the public transport system. That’s why an airport transfer is a good option. You’ll be met at the airport and can step right into a comfortable, air-conditioned car. This car will take you straight to your hotel room where you can relax and freshen up before exploring the local Brazil attractions.
Brazil is a massive country, and the sheer size means that if you only have a short amount of time to visit, you’ll need to be smart about getting around. Here are some options for long-distance travel when visiting Brazil attractions:
If you want to see a lot of things in a short time period, you’ll probably need to take some internal flights. Unfortunately, these flights are often expensive. If you’ll be visiting a few cities, you may find that an air pass is one of the cheapest and most efficient options. Brazil’s largest airlines, Gol and Tam allow you to book air passes as multi-trip tickets. Each has their own conditions and fare rules, so be sure to read these well in advance. Both air passes are also only available to non-residents of Brazil and need to be bought from outside the country. If you’d like to purchase an air pass, you’ll need an international flight ticket in and out of the country.
Since domestic flights are so expensive, bus travel is easy and popular in Brazil, and buses service most parts of the country. This can be a good option if you’d like to see a range of Brazil attractions but you’re also working with a budget. While the coach services in Brazil aren’t as reliable or smooth running as in Argentina or Chile, but you’ll reach your destination eventually. Breakdowns aren’t uncommon on long-haul buses since the huge distances often put a strain on the vehicles. That’s why it pays to choose a larger company so a replacement will be sent if necessary. You may also find that the distance takes a toll on you personally. Some trips can take more than 40 hours, and while the buses will stop for drinks and food, these can be at weird hours. Bring plenty of water and snacks.
While the transport options in Brazil will get you to any key Brazil attractions you’d like to see, hiring a car will give you more freedom to explore. This can save you money and time, but you’ll need to be prepared for the local traffic. As long as you’re in Brazil for less than 6 months, your own driver’s license should be valid. However, this will depend on your home country, and some car rental companies may also require an international driver’s license. Some Brazilian roads have tolls, so be prepared. As you get closer to more northern or inland communities, the roads will deteriorate, with large potholes, stray farm animals, and cyclists. Take your time, and be sure to have plenty of breaks.
Brazil Attractions: Wrap Up
As you can see, you have plenty of transport options for your trip to Brazil. The transport you choose will depend on your itinerary and how much time you have to explore the most popular Brazil attractions. Want to learn more about how you can get around Brazil? Get in touch today to learn how we can help.