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FESTIVALS, HOLIDAYS AND OTHER ANNUAL EVENTS IN Sao Paulo

There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in São Paulo each year.
The main ones are listed below.

January 1: New Year's Day (national holiday)

May 1: Labour Day (national holiday)

May 22: Corpus Christi (national holiday)

This springtime commemoration of the Holy Eucharist was introduced by the Portuguese. This is an all-day affair in São Paulo, with processions of children dressed in white and streets covered in sawdust, leaves, dried flowers, coffee grounds and chalk.

September 7: Independence Day (national holiday)

Brazil's independence on this day in 1822 is celebrated in São Paulo with concerts and other stage shows, street parties, dances and fireworks.

November 2: All Souls' Day (Dia de Finados, national holiday)

On this day, families pay tribute to the departed, decorate their tombs at the cemetery and enjoy various specialities cooked for the occasion. Musicians and artists give the streets a festive atmosphere.

December 2: National Samba Day (celebrated nationwide)

This day celebrating Brazil's most popular dance form also marks the official start of the summer holidays. As in other cities across the country, it is celebrated in São Paulo with numerous samba performances, concerts and revellers dancing in the streets.

December 25: Christmas (national holiday)

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CLIMATE AND WEATHER IN Sao Paulo

São Paulo has a humid subtropical climate, strongly influenced by the South American monsoon. Summers are relatively hot, but the city seldom experiences extreme heat waves. Winters are very mild and rarely see freezing temperatures. The city receives significant rainfall every year, especially during the summer months (December to February).

Month Min. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Max. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Average Rains (MM) Best Time to Travel
January 19/66 27/81 290/11.4 Not the best period to go
February 19/66 28/82 272/10.7 Not the best period to go
March 18/64 27/81 190/7.5 Not the best period to go
April 16/61 25/77 88/3.5 Not the best period to go
May 14/57 23/73 72/2.8 Good period to go Good period to go
June 12/54 23/73 70/2.8 Good period to go Good period to go
July 12/54 23/73 57/2.2 Good period to go Good period to go
August 13/55 23/73 47/1.9 Good period to go Good period to go
September 14/57 24/75 78/3.1 Not the best period to go
October 15/59 25/77 140/5.5 Not the best period to go
November 16/61 26/79 120/4.7 Not the best period to go
December 19/66 26/79 190/7.5 Not the best period to go
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São Paulo Guarulhos International Airport

The airport is located about 22 kilometres (14 miles) north-east of the city centre.

  • Four terminals:
    • Terminal 1
    • Terminal 2
    • Terminal 3 (Air France)
    • Terminal 4
  • Getting from the airport to São Paulo and back:
    • By car
      • Accessible via Rodovia Ayrton Senna and Via Presidente Dutra national roads. Travel time can take from 30 to 60 minutes.
      • Several short- and long-term parking facilities are available, located opposite each terminal (BRL 10 to BRL 15 for up to 1 hour, BRL 40 to BRL 55 for 1 day).
      • Several car rental companies have counters in the arrivals halls of Terminals 1 and 2.
    • By rail
      • The closest metro station to reach São Paulo's city centre is Tietê (on line 1). It connects the airport to this bus station in 30 minutes for about BRL 4.
    • By bus
      • Buses connect the airport to the city centre about every 15 minutes. The travel time is 50 minutes and the fare is BRL 35.
    • By shuttle bus
      • Airport Bus Service operates executive buses (with relaxing seats, televisions, power connections and other amenities) to various destinations within the city centre. The fare is BRL 42.00 and the trip takes about 40 minutes.
    • By taxi
      • Taxis are available at the ranks outside the arrivals halls at each terminal. The trip to the city centre takes about 30 to 60 minutes, and costs around BRL 100.
  • Services: shops, bars and restaurants, free Internet access (Wi-Fi) available in the airport.
  • Telephone: +55 (0)11 2445 2945
  • Website: http://www.gru.com.br

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GETTING AROUND Sao Paulo

Although São Paulo is a sprawling metropolis, its public transport system is efficient and can be used to reach most points in the city. However, traffic can be quite congested, especially at rush hours.

By rail

São Paulo's excellent Metrô system is by far the fastest way to get around the city. There are five main colour-coded lines: Line 1 (Blue), Line 2 (Green), Line 3 (Red), Line 4 (Yellow) and Line 5 (Lilac). Metrô trains run daily from 4:40 a.m. to midnight (with service extended until 1 a.m. on Saturday nights). A ticket for a single trip costs BRL 3.50.

Useful tip: The Bilhete Único, a smart card system for public transport within São Paulo, allows you to purchase an integrated ticket, valid for up train, Metro and any of the city's municipal buses.

By bus

Hundreds of bus routes criss-cross the city, operated by both private and state-owned transportation companies. Dedicated bus lanes have been set up in the median area of the city's main thoroughfares, but service can be very slow at times, especially at rush hours. A single ticket costs BRL 3.20.

Important: Bus drivers only stop to pick up passengers if they wave as the bus approaches.

By commuter rail

São Paulo has eight commuter rail lines with stations in the city's main districts. A single ticket costs BRL 3.80.

By taxi

Taxis are plentiful in São Paulo and especially useful when night falls, not only for their sheer practicality, but for safety reasons as well. A ride in the city centre costs about BRL 20.

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Visitor information

Upon your arrival in São Paulo, you can get in touch with local tourism professionals for further information and to help organize your stay.

São Paulo Convention and Visitors Bureau

Offers practical information and useful recommendations (accommodation, restaurants, public transport, festivals, cultural events, etc.) as well as brochures and maps.

Further information available online for visitors to Brazil

The Brazilian national tourist board provides a wealth of information on São Paulo.

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Currency and Exchange Rates

The currency used in Brazil is the Real (BRL).

1 € = 3,90 R$

1 R$ = 0,26 €

The above exchange rate is given for information because is variable.

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Medical information

Vaccinations

Brazilian authorities require proof of vaccination against yellow fever for travellers arriving from the following countries: French Guiana, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela. The original of the vaccination certificate must be presented. Booster doses of diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and polio vaccines are mandatory. For more information, contact Air France's international vaccination centre:

Water

Drinking tap water is not safe. It is recommended to drink bottled water.

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Administrative formalities

As a general rule, foreign nationals must apply for visas before travelling to Brazil. However, Brazil has entered into visa exemption agreements with a number of countries.

If you hold dual Brazilian and French citizenship, you will be subject to Brazilian law from the moment you enter Brazil and until your departure. For this reason, if you are a dual national, you will need to present your Brazilian passport to enter and leave Brazil.

To find out if you will need a visa for travel to Brazil, visit the consular section of the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website: http://www.portalconsular.mre.gov.br/apoio-no-exterior/observatorio-de-inadmitidos

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Useful contacts

To enjoy peace of mind during your stay in São Paulo, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country.

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Essential phrases

Here are a few basic Brazilian Portuguese phrases that will make your stay in São Paulo a little easier:

Good morning: Bom dia

Good afternoon (until 6 p.m.): Boa tarde

Good evening / Good night: Boa noite

Good-bye: Adeus

Yes: Sim

No: Não

No, thank you: Não, obrigado(a)

Thank you very much: Muito obrigado(a)

I don't understand: Eu não entendo

Could you please repeat?: Você pode repetir

Please: Por favor / Desculpe

What time is it?: Que horas são? 

Excuse me: Com licença 

Airport: Aeroporto

Station: Estação

Taxi: Táxi 

Hotel: Hotel

Hospital: Hospital

Bank: Banco

Telephone: Telefone 

I am (…): Eu sou (…)

I'm looking for (…): Eu procuro

How much is (…)?: Quanto custa ? 

Do you have (…)?: Você tem (…) 

Where can I find (…)?: Onde é que há (…) 

Where can I buy (…)?: Onde posso comprar (…)

I would like (…)?: Queria (…)

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Good to know

intl. access code + 55
+ phone number without the 0 (calls to São Paulo)
-3 : 00
of time difference with
Hamburg
Start of daylight saving time: third Sunday in October

End of daylight saving time: third Sunday in February

Banks

Usually open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Government offices

Usually open Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.
127/220 V / 50 Hz

Tipping
In São Paulo as in the rest of Brazil, a 10% service charge is included in the bill at bars and restaurants. However, it is not considered out of place to leave the waiting staff a little extra tip if you are particularly pleased with the service. If no gratuity is added to the bill, tipping between 10 and 15% is customary.