Brazil is one of the countries with more tourist potential in the world no one has doubts, but in recent years the country has ceased to be the destination for many, including Americans, to be expensive. But the scenario has change a bit during the last two years. The country, where annual income averaged a little less than US$12,000 in 2013, had nevertheless become eye-wateringly expensive for locals and visitors alike. The New York Times ran a story about $30 cheese pizzas in Brazil’s restaurants, and Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil’s two largest cities, featured regularly on lists of the most expensive places for tourists to visit and foreigners to settle.
For those fortunate enough to earn US dollars or Euros, Brazil has been transformed from rip-off to reasonable in the last two years. Political crises and an economic slowdown in China (Brazil’s largest trading partner) have contributed to a 40 percent drop in the value of the Brazilian currency, the real, since September 2013. Just a few months ahead for Brazil hosts the Summer Olympic Games, the drop translates to a host of good deals for visitors and migrants heading to Brazil.
Entertainment and fun could be considered cheap, like stay in hotels and eating in restaurants, however, electronics and imported goods, remain much more expensive in Brazil than in the U.S, in part, thanks to sky-high import duties and taxes. Local attractions have gotten a lot cheaper for those spending dollars. The price for the cable car to connect you for the famous Sugar Loaf Mountain can be purchased (*Oct 2015) for R$62 (Brazilian Reais), that if converted in dollars (*Dec 2015), will be around US$16. Couple years ago the same ticket for the respective cable car in converted dollars around US$28.
During the year 2015, and very possible, continues in 2016, the number of people checking out Brazil as a possible destination have increased drastically as Brazil is one of the top destinations in the world in consequence of its natural beauty and rich culture. Just as one more example, residential rental prices in Rio actually decreased for the first time since 2008. If the real continues its historic decline, then even some luxury goods could move into the bargain basement. But for now dollar-earners will have to make do with cheap caipirinhas and feijoadas.