Brazil Visa woes...


Jun 24, 2008
hey hey!

I've been looking through this website and all the questions relating to Brazilian visas are for the Iguazu boarder cross for a couple of days. My question is for a backpacker wanting to travel freely in Brazil for about 2 weeks. I'm Australian, and need a visa for Brazil. I'm wanting to go to Rio from Iguazu and travel down the "green coast" to Sao Paulo and then back to into Argentina. So I won't be using any planes to travel to and through Brazil. So my question is, how do a get this visa if a can't prove my flights as I will only be using buses and cars? please share any experiences with this issue. I will greatly appreciate it.

I went to Brazil last year. You need to supply all sorts of things I don't think they really need to have, bank statements and a photocopy of you credit card to start with. You definitely need to supply the details of where you are staying and show proof, ie tickets, that show when you are going to leave the country. This may mean you have to bend the truth a little. I don't think they like backpackers without a plan.
Speaking as a Brit, I have been in and out of Brazil over various different borders (Venezuela, Bolivia, Argentina) and I have never been asked for anything except my passport. Oh: that's not quite true. One Brazillian immigration officer asked me if I had a British Pound for his foreign coin collection. When Brazil instituted the visa programme they were completely transparent about their intention to cause reciprocal cost and annoyance to visitors from countries who caused cost and annoyance to their citizens. I'm afraid that the ease with which US citizens pass over Brazillian borders (and from the new year, probably Argentine borders too) is likely to be directly related to the ease with which foreigners pass over borders into the USA.

Of course, reading your post more correctly, I see you are from Australia. Judging from the hard time Australian immigration gave me in Perth, last time I was there, you may have a long wait to get into Brazil. On a purely reciprocal basis, of course.
I suggest you go to any Brazilian Consulate office and inquire how to travel in Brazil. As for the United States immigration rules, we already support half of Mexico.
And a third of Guatemala and Nicaragua, half of El Salvador, and large portions of every other population north of the Panama Canal.
I'm American and plan on traveling in brazil for a couple of months around Jan and Feb. I got a 5yr brazilian visa from the los angeles consulate (since i live in NV) before I left for BsAs. Besides a $130 fee, they required all kinds of other documentation (leaving my passport with them for 10 days, flight rezzies, copy of drivers license, etc..). I have to enter brazil with 3 months of issuance and can't stay for more than 60 or 90 days at any one time, I forget which. Valid for 5 yrs from the 1st entry. I wound up using a service and having to fedex everything since I don't live anywhere near LA, so the whole thing wound up costing over $200.

You can get a visa issued from the consulate in BsAs, but I heard that they don't do the five yr visas, and sometimes only issue them for 2 weeks. You also have to deal with the local bureaucracy and waiting in nasty lines.

You may get off fine with just crossing over in iguazu...i've heard differing stories about it, so you may be taking your chances...

Best of luck!
I believe one of the requirements Brazil requires of Americans when they apply for a visa is a return ticket, ie. a ticket out of the country. You can try purchasing a fully refundable plane ticket to and from Sao Paulo, or Porto Alegre or wherever and then, once they grant you the visa, get it refunded [fully, of course].

Also Crucero del Norte and Pluna are two bus companies that go to Brazil. You could get round trip tickets between Buenos Aires and Sao Paulo or Foz de Iguacu and, once your visa is granted, get them refunded. Bus companies are usually more flexible than airlines with their refund policies, altho do check with them first. Both companies are at the Retiro bus station, waaaay at the end.
I just went to Brazil. I got my visa at the consulate here in BsAs. I went without any documentation. I might have been asked to show my credit card. I think it helped that I am a 49 year old man, and was relatively clean that day :) The clerk asked for my hotel information and asked me for copies of my confirmation. I told her the travel agent had not sent it to me yet. She told me to bring a confirmation when I returned to pick up my visa. I still did not have it when I returned and the new clerk who was there just gave me my passport with visa. No problem.
RWS said:
And a third of Guatemala and Nicaragua, half of El Salvador, and large portions of every other population north of the Panama Canal.
As we should, based on our continued intervention in their politics, our control of their natural resources, and our support of dictatorships and oligarchs who keep their people impoverished.