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BBNers - International Experiences Thread - Sharing Global Information & ExperiencesViews: 630
Nov 22, 2006 8:03 am Brazil Tips
Chetan Ramamurthy Brazil- Business Traveler tips (Mainly for Sao Paulo)

At the Airport on Arrival

Airport - The main international airport of Sao Paulo, known as Guarulhos or Cumbica, is the largest of Sao Paulo’s two airports and is about 30km north of Sao Paulo. All international flight operate from this airport. After you pass out of immigration change about 200USD at the airport itself. The exchange rates though are quite bad everywhere

Upon arriving, the best way to get to a hotel or into the city is via taxi. When travelers choose taxis, they should try to use the blue-and-white Guarucoop radio taxis from the airport. These taxis provide a flat rate from the Airport (approximately BRL100). You could go the taxi counter and pay by Credit card as well. They are reliable and safe, unlike some other “common” taxis. The commun taxis are metered, with drives beginning at BRL4 and costing BRL 1.20 per Kilometer. Regardless of what cab one takes, the ride to the city should take about 30 to 40 minutes from the International Airport.
Internal flights to and from Sao Paulo to Curitiba/Rio should be from the domestic airports which are inside the city
Traffic in SP is quite bad during rush hours and one must schedule atleast an hour or more to get to the International airport
Inside Sao Paulo: Getting Around

Sao Paulo is a huge city of skyscrapers and is like a much cleaner Mumbai. Taxis are the best way for getting around and is good to have the address written down on a piece and paper and given to the driver on boarding. You could also pass this info on to the hotel receptionist and ask for the same
The standard taxis available at the airport, can also be found anywhere around town. However, the more reliable taxi, the Radio Taxis, are better and safer choices for tourists. (i.e. Radio Taxi Sao Paulo (+55 011 251 1733) or Radio Taxi Vermelho e Branco (+55 011 251 1733) ).

They are relatively inexpensive and would cost about $R 15 for journeys from Hotel to customer location
(3.20R + 1.2R per km)

Please learn some Potuguese words before you go.This is a must otherswise you would really have a bad time
Also Sao Paulo is not a very safe city and hence donot venture alone in the night.If you have to donot carry more than 100R with you.

At the Hotel

Many Hotels do not accept $ or American traveler’s cheques. Hence be ready with the Brazilian R$ currency and most banks in and around downtown will get you the same. Numerous banks exist and hence this is not a problem. However you will not get great rates at most banks. Credit cards are accepted and save a lot of hassle in hotels
Coffee makers/Iron box etc; are usually not available in ¾ start hotels. However on request apart from basic toiletries polish, toothpaste, razors are provided .Both European and American adapters work

About the meetings

I had 2 meetings cancelled at the last minute hence donot fix up the meeting in advance and expect that is still on. Keep tabs till the last day. The meetings also extend for an hour or more and they are a mixture of Formal and Informal talk. So you will have to be patient and engage the customer but still get the point across

Very often the prospect will struggle to find the right words in English and would help if you know a bit of Portuguese/Spanish. Best to have somebody with you who knows Portuguese though

Private Reply to Chetan Ramamurthy (new win)

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