It is essential that travel insurance be taken out prior to departure. This should cover any medical situation such as hospitalisation, as well as cancellation, curtailment of arrangements and baggage.
Check with your insurance agent regarding coverage you may presently have via other insurance policies, which may cover illness during your trip.
- Emergency evacuation expenses,
- Medical expenses,
- Repatriation expenses.
- Cancellation or curtailment of trip,
- Damage/theft/loss of personal luggage, money and goods.
In general, Brazil has a good medical care system, however it may not meet “Western” standards outside the major cities.
Vaccinations: To enter Brazil it is not required to have any vaccinations, however a Yellow Fever vaccine is required for entry into Brazil if you are arriving from a Yellow Fever infected country or have visited a Yellow Fever area in the previous 6 months. In these cases an international Yellow Fever immunization certificate is required and vaccination must be done at least 10 days before entry. The recommended vaccinations for travel into Brazil are Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B.
Malaria prevention: Malaria is present in Brazil, especially in the Amazon, and as a result prophylactics are recommended as well as insect repellent and general precautions against mosquito bites.
Zika virus: All pregnant women should consult with their travel doctor before travelling as the disease causes microcephaly in babies. In addition to using insect repellent and long-sleeved clothes, you should avoid stagnant water in places such as buckets or old tyres.
Outbreaks of Dengue Fever occur in Brazil. The disease is transmitted by the Aedes mosquito, which favours densely populated areas and bite primarily during the day. Insect repellent/protection is strongly recommended. Ticks and chiggers are common during the dry season, and although they do not carry diseases such as Lyme disease we recommend that you take precautions avoid them such as spraying your pants with insect repellent and tucking your pants in your socks.
Please consult your doctor or travel clinic for recommendations.
Travelling throughout Brazil is generally considered safe. However, it is important to be aware that in the larger urban areas crime can be an issue and the regular precautions (not wandering streets alone after dark, staying away from high risk areas, etc.) should be taken. Petty theft is not unknown in tourist areas, and we recommend that your cash, passports and other important documents are kept on your body at all times and not in daybags or handbags. Even the most upmarket of lodges and hotels do have theft creeping in and it is imperative that you make sure your valuables are locked away in the safe provided at the lodge, if in any doubt please speak to the camp management or your tour leader. As an added precaution we also advise that you keep your bags in your room locked with a travel lock.
The Brazilian monetary unit is the Real (R$), an excellent website to check on the latest rates is http://www.xe.com. It is wise not to use notes of high value, as they are rarely used and therefore accepted with suspicion. The US dollar is the most widely accepted foreign currency in Brazil. When leaving the country, it is advisable to change the local currency into dollars before you pass the passport and airport security controls. Visa and Mastercard are the most widely accepted credit cards in Brazil, but American Express and Diners Club are accepted for payment at exclusive hotels, major restaurants & shopping centres. Money can be exchanged at the forex bureaus, banks & the hotels. Cash machines are available but ONLY at the major points. Traveller’s cheques are usually NOT accepted at hotels and we recommend that you do not rely on them for travel in Brazil.
A passport (with the expiration date at least six months after the intended date of arrival in Brazil) and tourist visa is required for U.S. citizens travelling to Brazil. Travellers from the following countries do not require a tourist visa for entry into Brazil: Belgium, Denmark, France, Italy, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, South Africa and the United Kingdom. Citizens of countries that are members of the Mercosul do not require visas. For other countries that are not exempt from visa requirements, Brazilian visas must be obtained in advance from the Brazilian Embassy or consulate nearest to the traveller’s place of residence. It is not possible to obtain a visa upon arrival in Brazil and immigration authorities will refuse entry to Brazil to anyone not possessing a valid visa. All Brazilian visas, regardless of the length of validity, must initially be used within 90 days of the issuance date or will no longer be valid. It is imperative that Nationals of any country check with their consulate/embassy for up to date information as this information can change.
The voltage here varies between 110 and 220 volts AC, there is no physical difference in the outlets for the two voltages. The wall sockets are recessed as in the image below.
The official language of Brazil is Portuguese, which is derived from the language in Portugal, but with a different accent and some different expressions. Many Brazilians speak English and Spanish, and in some States, you can also find people speaking German (Santa Catarina and Rio Grande do Sul), Italian (São Paulo and Paraná), indigenous languages (Amazonas and Mato Grosso do Sul) and other languages.
There are four time zones in Brazil. In general, most tourist sites are 3 hours behind Greenwich Mean Time (GMT-3) and cities on this timeline include Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo.
The small print:
The above information is intended as a guide only. In no way does the Brazil Safari Company claim to be the final word on medical matters, travel documents or other tour related subjects mentioned above. Any applicable visas, costs and/or relevant documentation are the responsibility of the traveller. Visa entry requirements must be determined, and obtained where relevant, prior to travel. The Brazil Safari Company, its staff, agents and operators cannot be held liable should entry be denied.