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Practical information about Brazil

Practical information about Brazil
Practical information about Brazil

Practical information about Brazil

CLIMATE
Best time to travel

Brazil is an incredible destination all year round.

The enormous size of the country affects its climate and seasons. Brazil lies on the equator, so most of the country is tropical, though the climate in the south of the country is subtropical, and it never gets truly cold.

The tropical climate belts mean that most of Brazil is hot and humid. Tropical rainfall can occur anywhere in the country, but it doesn’t normally last for long. The rainy season and dry season also depend on which part of the country you’re in.

The country receives the highest numbers of visitors from December to March, as many people go on holiday and the hot temperatures draw in travellers seeking to escape the cold in Europe.

Rio de Janeiro:
The coastal city of Rio de Janeiro has a tropical climate and diverse weather in the dry and rainy seasons. The city’s climate is affected by its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, which helps lower the temperature.

Dry season: approx. May to October
The average daytime temperature is around 25 – 26 degrees. The dry season also offers overcast days, with occasional rain, but the sky is often blue and sunny.

Rainy season: approx. November to April
The average daytime temperature is 27 – 30 degrees, though the temperature can get as high as 40 degrees. Some rainfall, but often in the form of brief showers.

Weather statistics for Rio de Janeiro: JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 29 30 29 28 26 25 25 26 25 26 27 29
Average minimum temperature 23 24 23 22 20 19 18 19 19 20 21 22
Rainfall mm 114 105 103 137 86 80 56 51 87 88 96 169

Iguazú Falls:
The Iguazú Falls are located in the subtropical climate belt and rainfall occurs throughout the year.

Weather statistics for Foz do Iguaçu: JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 33 32 32 29 25 24 24 27 28 30 31 33
Average minimum temperature 21 21 20 17 14 12 12 13 14 18 19 20
Rainfall mm 166 158 149 145 169 140 122 97 165 207 164 185

Salvador:
Salvador, a coastal city in northern Brazil, also has a tropical climate. The weather is pleasant all year round with average daytime temperatures of around 26–30 degrees. Quite a lot of rain falls all year round, but it can certainly still be divided into a dry season and a rainy season.

The dry season is approx. August to March
During the dry season, rainfall drops to around 110–150 mm a month.

The rainy season is approx. April to July
When the rain comes, it falls in heavy showers, which are fortunately often quickly replaced by sunshine. About 200–325 mm of rain falls every month during this period.

Weather statistics for Salvador: JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 30 30 30 29 28 27 26 26 27 28 29 29
Average minimum temperature 24 24 24 23 23 22 21 21 22 23 23 23
Rainfall mm 111 121 145 322 325 251 204 136 112 122 119 132

The Amazon:
In the Amazon’s tropical climate, you can expect average daytime temperatures of 29–33 degrees all year round. Humidity and temperatures are higher than in the rest of northern Brazil. Although it rains all year round in the Amazon, you can still divide each year in the rainforest into a dry season and a rainy season.

The dry season is approx. June to November
Sunshine and heat characterise this period. In the dry season, around 50–200 mm rain falls per month.

The rainy season is approx. December to May
In the rainy season, you can expect longer rain showers than in the rest of the year. More than 200 mm rain falls per month.

Weather statistics for Manaus (the Amazon): JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 30 29 30 30 30 30 31 32 33 33 32 31
Average minimum temperature 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 25 25 25 25 24
Rainfall mm 264 290 335 331 279 115 85 47 74 113 174 220

Pantanal:
In south-western Brazil lies the world’s largest wetland, Pantanal. Pantanal is located in the tropical climate belt.

The dry season is approx. April to October
The plains slowly dry out and the animals have more space to move about in. Birds gather to fish at the few watering holes that remain. Average daytime temperatures are around 28-32 degrees.

The rainy season is approx. November to March
During this period, it rains every day, but often only for a few hours. Large parts of the area are flooded, and it may be easiest to get around by boat. The animals gather in the few remaining drained areas and it is far easier to find them.

Weather statistics for Campo Grande (Pantanal): JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Average maximum temperature 31 31 32 31 28 28 28 30 31 32 31 32
Average minimum temperature 22 22 22 20 17 17 16 17 19 21 21 22
Rainfall mm 243 187 145 101 111 45 46 40 81 110 130 229

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR TOUR
Passport & visa

As a British citizen, you must be in possession of a valid British passport. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after your return home.

As a British citizen, you do not require a visa to visit Brazil for stays that do not exceed 90 days.

Please note: It is your own responsibility to check whether you need a visa for transit airports en route.

 

Brazil – when travelling with children under the ages of 16/18:

If a child under the age of 16 is travelling on a domestic flight in Brazil with only one or neither of his/her parents, the child must bring his/her birth certificate and a declaration of consent signed by both parents or the child’s guardian. The declaration of consent must be signed in the presence of a notary and legalised. The child must also be accompanied by a companion over 18 years of age.

If the child is travelling with both parents, we recommend that you bring the child’s birth certificate showing the parents’ names just to be on the safe side.

The above rules apply to tours with domestic flights for children also apply to your arrival in and departure from Brazil, albeit here for all children under the age of 18.

You are responsible for meeting the requirements for travelling with children in Brazil, and we recommend that you contact the Brazilian Embassy for more information before departure.

If you are travelling via the US, the following applies to British citizens:

To travel via the United States, you must apply for an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization). Without ESTA, you will not be allowed to travel through the United States. Apply for the travel authorisation in good time at least 72 hours before your departure to the US. All travellers must apply, regardless of their age. You can apply and find the price via the following link: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta/. You should have your passport, itinerary, credit card and e-mail address to hand when making your application. The travel authorization is electronically connected to your passport and is valid for 2 years or until your passport expires (whichever is earliest). We recommend that you bring a physical copy of your ESTA with you if, for example, the system is down on your arrival, however this is not a requirement.

If you get a new passport, you must apply for a new ESTA.

Note that you must contact the United States Embassy to apply for a visa if you have visited any of the following countries:

  • Cuba as of 12 January 2021
  • North Korea, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia, or Yemen as of 1 March 2011

Stricter requirements will also apply if you hold dual citizenship with any of these countries.

For further information on filling out your ESTA application, please see the overview of frequently asked questions and their answers here: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/faq?lang=en.

You can also get in touch by telephone at: +1-202-325-8000

 

If you are travelling via Canada, the following applies to British citizens:

You must possess an eTA entry permit (Electronic Travel Authorisation) in order to enter via Canada. If you do not possess this permit, you will be rejected on check-in at your departure airport. You must apply for this entry permit well ahead of time, and all travellers, regardless of age, must possess this permit. You can apply and find pricing for the eTA via this link: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/eta-start.aspYou should have your passport, itinerary, credit card and e-mail address to hand when making your application.

The travel authorization is electronically connected to your passport and is valid for 5 years or until your passport expires (whichever is earlier). We recommend that you bring a physical copy of your eTA entry permit.

If you get a new passport, you must apply for a new eTA.

The visa regulations can be checked here

Travel documents

Prior to departure, you will receive a tour itinerary with your flight information and the telephone numbers of our local partners at the destination, allowing you to get in touch with them in case you have any questions during your tour. You will then receive your tour vouchers, which will confirm that you have booked and paid for your overnight stays, excursions, and transfers. Remember to bring these with you on your tour.

We recommend that you download the WhatsApp app to your smartphone and add the phone numbers of our business partners. Send messages to them free of charge here. If you wish to call, this is only possible via the ordinary telephone network.

Vaccinations

We recommend that you contact a medical specialist, your GP or an authorised vaccination clinic for information about vaccinations. You can also read more about the rules regarding travel vaccinations here

Please be aware of the rules about yellow fever – especially if you are entering via another country where yellow fever is present. Some countries require proof of yellow fever vaccination upon entry. Your vaccination certificate should therefore always be carried with you in your hand luggage when you travel. 

 

Covid-19

There is currently no Covid-19 vaccination requirement for entry into Brazil. However, these rules may change at short notice. It is your responsibility to check these rules before departure.

Please note that certain Covid-19 rules may apply at the stopover airports on your way to/from Ecuador. It is also your responsibility to check this before departure.

Some locations may have mask requirements, e.g., medical clinics and hospitals.
Remain up to date on the rules through your guide or ask the hotel’s staff.

Terms and conditions of travel

Please read our general travel terms and conditions carefully, as these are part of the agreement terms for tours purchased at TourCompass. Tours purchased from us are covered under the “Package Travel Act”.

Click here to read our travel terms and conditions.

All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.
Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate click here.

Travel insurance

We always advise you to obtain comprehensive travel insurance when heading off on your dream holiday. It is also highly recommended to acquire cancellation insurance for extra protection. 

Click here to proceed to our page on insurance, where you can read more about our recommendations.

BEFORE YOU TRAVEL
Currency, price level & tipping

The Brazilian currency is called Real (BRL). The current BRL exchange rate can be found here.

We recommend that you bring some US dollars with you in cash, which you can exchange at an official bureau de change upon your arrival. There are ATMs practically everywhere. Most common credit cards can be used in most hotels, restaurants and shops. There may sometimes be a surcharge when using a credit card.
The further you travel into the countryside, the harder it may be to pay by credit card. We recommend that you always bring some cash in USD.

 

Click here to get a general idea of price levels in the country.

It is a custom and appreciated to tip when you are in Latin American countries, but it is voluntary, and the amount you are willing to give is entirely at your discretion.

The guide below is indicative only.

  • Restaurants and bars: Typically included in the bill, and if not, tips should not exceed 10% of the bill.
  • Guide: 5 USD PP per excursion
  • Driver: 3 USD PP per excursion
  • Maids: 1-2 USD PRPN
  • Porters: 1-2 USD per suitcase
  • Taxi drivers: It is not common practice to tip taxi drivers.

 

Tips in the Amazon & Pantanal:
If your holiday includes a stay in the Amazon or Pantanal, we recommend that each guest gives around USD 10 per day. You can divide it up and you give the guide half, handing the rest over at the reception when you check out. The receptionist will then share it out between all the staff at the lodge (maids, chefs and drivers). For example, if you are there for 4 days/3 nights, you give the guide 20 USD and the reception USD 20.

Our tipping guide above is in USD, but tips should be calculated in the local currency at the destination.

Food & allergies

At the vast majority of our destinations, we are able to take allergies, as well as allergens or preferences into account when it comes to food, but it is important that you inform us of this when you book the tour.

Telephones, Wi-Fi & electricity

Telephones, Wi-Fi:

It’s expensive to use data and roaming abroad if it’s not already included in your mobile subscription. Contact your mobile phone service provider to find out what services are included in your subscription and what prices apply to you at different destinations.

If data and roaming are not included in your mobile subscription when travelling abroad, we recommend that you make use of the free Wi-Fi at your hotel or in restaurants. That way, you can call and write home free of charge via various services such as Facetime, Messenger and WhatsApp.

If you would like to be online all the time, the cheapest option will be to purchase a local SIM card with data on arrival in Brazil.

 

Electricity

Electricity is not standardised in Brazil, so you may come across different types of sockets and different voltages. We therefore recommend that you bring a multi-travel adapter with you.

What to pack

Make sure you pack all your important and indispensable things in your hand luggage. This applies to items such as passports, visas, vaccination cards, travel documents, insurance documents, credit cards, money, computers, mobile phones and cameras, as well as information about your health and vital medicines.

Recommended packing list for visits to Pantanal or the Amazon:

  • A rucksack and possibly a waterproof bag (dry bag)
  • Reusable water bottle
  • Sunscreen and lip balm with high SPF
  • Toiletries including a first aid kit with plasters, blister plasters, painkillers, pills against diarrhoea, antihistamines, mosquito repellent spray, etc.
  • Quick-drying long and short-sleeved tops
  • Quick-drying shorts and loose-fitting long trousers
  • Light rain jacket or poncho
  • Comfortable footwear, including both water resistant closed shoes and sandals
  • Hat with sun shade and sunglasses
  • Swimwear and towel
  • headlamp/flashlight and extra batteries
  • Travel adapter
  • Binoculars for spotting the diverse animal life
  • Earplugs (optional)

Please note that when you travel to the lodge in the Amazon, your baggage allowance is max. 10 kg per person. Your remaining luggage can be stored at Manaus.

Bringing plant products into the UK

Visitors are not permitted to bring plants, seeds, fruit and other plant products into the UK from their travels outside the UK, unless they are accompanied by a plant health (phytosanitary) certificate. These rules also apply to smaller quantities of plants and plant products.

Read more about the rules here.

Travellers with reduced mobillity

Please note, our tours are generally not suitable for persons with reduced mobility. Please contact us for information about the possibilities according any specific needs.

THE FLIGHT
Airline tickets

Most airlines have electronic tickets (e-tickets).
It is important that you check your name for spelling errors, as the name on the reservation must be exactly as it appears on your passport. If your name needs to be corrected, please contact us as soon as possible. Please note that this may incur a fee from the airline.

Seat reservation

The airline will assign you a seat on the plane at check-in. If you have specific wishes regarding where you sit on the plane, you can make a seat reservation yourself on the airline’s website or in their app. Please note that most airlines require payment for a seat reservation.

It varies when airlines open for seat reservations, but as a general rule, you can book seats from the time of booking and up to 48 hours before departure.

We also point out that the airline has complete control over all seats on the plane and that they are therefore entitled to make changes to the reservation at any time.
If you do not make a seat reservation before departure, the airline will assign you a seat at check-in.

Check-in

Your passport and your booking reference, which appears on your itinerary, are required to check in.

We recommend that you download the airline’s app on your phone. In the app, there is an option for online check-in, which typically opens 24 to 48 hours before departure. The app also allows you to stay informed of any flight changes and other important information about your flight.

Please note that the flight times may have changed in relation to those listed on the travel itinerary you received when you booked your holiday. It is always the flight times in the airline’s app or on the airline’s website that apply.

At the airport

We recommend that you arrive at the airport to check in at least two hours before departure. It is a good idea to check the airport’s website for the latest updates.

Baggage

We use many different airlines for our destinations. You can check the exact rules for hand luggage and checked baggage on the airline’s website or in their app.

When you travel domestic flights within Brazil, please be aware that TourCompass may not always be able to prepay your checked baggage. Naturally, this does not mean that you cannot bring your bags. You will simply have to pay for it yourself at the check-in counter at the airport. This is very easy to do, and you pay for the baggage when you check in.

Delayed baggage

If your baggage is delayed, please contact the staff in the baggage reclaim area to report your missing baggage.

It is important that you have your baggage receipt when completing your PIR (Property Irregularity Report).

Please note that you must not leave the baggage area at the airport until you have completed the report.

In the event of delayed baggage, we ask you to contact our partner, who will ensure that your guide/driver waits for you.

Flight delays or cancellations

Should any changes occur in connection with your flight reservation before departure, we will of course contact you to let you know.

Should your flight be delayed after check-in, the airline is responsible for rebooking your flight. They will typically book the next possible flight and arrange any meals and accommodation if necessary.

Our partner checks for any changes in arrival times and will naturally still wait for you, even if your flight is delayed.

If, due to a delay or cancellation, the airline books you on another flight number after you have arrived at the airport, please contact us on TourCompass’ emergency number.

AT THE DESTINATION
Immigration & Customs

Immigration:

When you arrive at your final destination, you will go through immigration, where your passport and any entry documents and visas are checked. In many places, you will be required to provide fingerprints, and a photo of your face will also be taken for biometric recognition. You may also be asked questions about your travel plans in the country and possibly where you are staying.

 

Customs:
Once you’ve cleared immigration and picked up your luggage, you will head through customs. If you have nothing to declare, you can go through “nothing to declare”. If, on the other hand, you have something to declare, it is important that you go through “declare”. It’s your own responsibility to check the customs regulations that apply in the country you are travelling to.

Arrival

When you come out into the arrivals hall at the airport, you will be met by a guide/driver holding up a TourCompass sign with your name on it, who will make sure you get safely to your hotel.

In the unexpected event that you cannot find your guide/driver, please contact our partner using the emergency number provided in your travel documents.

Hotel check-in and check-out

Normal check-in is typically from 2 pm, and you cannot therefore count on getting your room earlier. If you’d like to check in early, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

When you check in, the receptionist will generally register your credit card and may reserve an amount. This is not an additional fee, but customary at hotels to ensure payment of any consumption from the minibar and the like. When you check out, the amount will be automatically released if you have not made use of this.

It is very normal for hotels to take a copy of your passport. In some places, this is a requirement of the local authorities.

Check-out is normally by 10 am. If you’re not travelling until the afternoon or evening, you can have your luggage stored until it’s time to leave. If you would like a late check-out instead, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

Type of tour and transport

In the event of unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, blocked roads or otherwise, it may be necessary to change the order of sightseeing tours and attractions in your itinerary.

Need for help during the tour?

We have a 24-hour emergency hotline so that you can always get in touch with us should anything unforeseen occur during your tour. You will also be sent the telephone numbers and emergency telephone numbers of our partners at the destination. In some cases, it may be easiest and fastest to contact our partners due to time differences, if, for example, you find yourself in a situation where your pick-up for an excursion or transfer is more than 15 minutes delayed.

AFTER THE TOUR
Feedback/Contact

We rely on happy travellers, and we would therefore very much like to hear from you after your return home. Send us an email at info@tourcompass.co.uk or call us on tel.: 01279 704 135

Latin America
Laura Arundell Trelborg

Laura loves to travel and is extremely passionate about helping others achieve their travel dreams.

Opening hours
Monday-Thursday 9-15
Friday 9-13