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ShermansTravel experts rely on years of collective travel experience to bring you the best money-saving tips for your vacation. We take a discerning look at all the attraction passes, public transportation options, and other local bargains to make sure you get the most bang for your buck while traveling.

Brazil Money-Saving Tips

Get Your Papers in Order

A passport won’t cut it at customs – U.S. citizens need a visa to enter Brazil. Apply ahead of time at your closest consulate and be prepared to shell out about $100. Hold onto your stamped entry card, which you’ll need at departure time.

Learn Some Portuguese

You’ll find English speakers at major tourist attractions in Brazil’s big cities, but picking up a few Portuguese phrases will help you when you visit more remote locations. Saying “bom dia” comes especially easily to travelers who know some Spanish.

Bring Your Check Card

Cashing a traveler’s check is difficult and costly in Brazil. You’ll get the best exchange rate withdrawing cash from an ATM. Be sure to break large bills whenever possible, since small shops and restaurants usually can’t make much change.

Update Your Immunizations

Many travelers entering Brazil need to show a certificate proving they’ve been vaccinated for yellow fever. Especially if you’ve spent time in a South American country prior to visiting Brazil, plan ahead to avoid an impromptu injection at border control.

Adjust Your Internal Clock

Generally speaking, daily life in Brazil begins and ends late. Don’t plan on eating dinner in a restaurant before 8pm, and if you’re venturing into Rio’s night scene, don’t bother arriving at a bar or club before 1am.

Street Food

Traditional treats, from meat-stuffed pastries to coconut candy and chicory sausage, are available on the cheap from Brazil’s countless street food vendors. Indulge on the go; just use caution in the bigger cities, where some stands are less hygienic than others.

Brazilian Cuisine

The cuisines of Brazil vary by region, but rice and black beans served with chicken, fish, or steak is common everywhere. Carnivores will adore the savory skewered meats of rodízio-style dining; Brazil’s exotic fruits form the base of delicious juices and caipirinhas.


Brazilian merriment and sensuousness is never more apparent than at Carnaval, the pre-Lent celebration when Rio’s streets are taken over by cachaça-fueled samba dancers, costumed revelers, and parades of drummers. The wild party, which drives up prices in Rio, continues until Ash Wednesday.


You could call soccer the nation’s unofficial religion: Brazil is home to some of the world’s most creative players and most passionate fans, and they’ve won more World Cups than any other international team. Matches are colorful spectacles and tickets aren’t expensive.

Dengue Fever

Bring plenty of repellent: mosquitoes transmit this viral infection that, according to those who’ve experienced it, makes sufferers feel like they’ve been kicked by a horse. Take extra precautions during hot or rainy spells in Rio de Janeiro.

Music and Dance

From Bossa Nova to samba to capoeira, a type of artistic fight dance still popular in Bahia, Brazil’s known for its unique dance and music traditions. Wherever you travel, don’t miss a chance to observe the locals doing what they do best.


Every Brazilian city is surrounded by shantytowns called favelas. Though more tourists are becoming interested in witnessing life in the slums, venturing into these poverty-stricken and often dangerous areas isn’t recommended.


In recent years, Brazil’s made international headlines for beach raids, tour bus hijackings, and other forms of criminal activity aimed at foreigners. Scary, yes, but locking valuables inside your hotel and dressing simply can help you stay under the radar.

Free Transfers to Buzios

Many upscale hotels and pousadas offer free transfer service from airports and hotels in Rio de Janeiro to Búzios. Ask when you make your reservation.

Aquataxis in Buzios

Traveling by night? The same fishermen who lead seaside day tours moonlight as “water taxis,” dropping tourists off at distant beaches for a reasonable fee. Hire them at the town’s main dock.

Travel by Taxis in Sao Paulo

Taxi cabs are plentiful and cheap in Sao Paulo. Although you can hail one on the street, it’s easiest to locate one at designated pontos de taxi stops (these can usually be found near shopping malls, parks and large intersections).

Compare Rates to Brazil

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