Cheap Brazilian Vacations - How to Keep Your Costs Down In An Expensive Destination by:Gary Sargent
Business is good in Brazil. A booming technology sector, abundant natural resources and a huge population are all keeping the global crisis at bay. The result is one of the strongest annual growths in GDP in the world for Brazil at 5%. Great news for Brazilians, but what does it mean for tourists and visitors?
Unfortunately, a more expensive Brazilian vacation (but for sure its worth it!)
There's no sense in lamenting Brazil's good fortune and cancelling your trip; all you've got to do is find ways to reduce the cost of your vacation because there are s many fantastic places to visit. Here are 7 ideas to bring your spending down to manageable levels.
1) Purchase as much as possible in advance
All hail the Internet! There are so many tour operator sites out there to help you find good deals and research the different parts of your trip before leaving. If time is on your side and your Brazilian vacation is several months away, you can purchase currency while the exchange rate is favourable, ask your tour operator to hunt for obscure flight connections to bring your costs down and haggle with them for reduced accommodation rates. You can even pre-empt getting hustled at the airport by taxi drivers by pre-booking a transfer to your hotel; despite saving money, you'll feel very exclusive when there's a driver waiting with your name card at the arrivals gate!
2) Travel outside school holidays
If you are a parent, you'll already be aware of price hikes for just about everything around school holidays as every family tries to go abroad at the same time. If you can arrange it with the school where the kids study, try to visit Brazil when locations are a little emptier and prices come down or are more negotiable. You can justify the time out of school by telling the principal that travel broadens the mind...
3) Consider public transport instead of vehicle hire
Brazil has a well developed transport network in cities and towns, as well as strong links between different parts of the country. Instead of having your tour company arrange a private vehicle, try travelling by bus, a reputable company can advise on good bus routes and arrrange tickets for you. You'll be surprised by the quality and efficiency of the services, not to mention saving the money that would otherwise be wasted as your hire vehicle sits outside the hotel you are staying in for a couple of days.
4) Eat in local restaurants
Following recommendations from your hotel or local guides, you can encounter local options at mealtimes just around the corner from expensive tourist restaurants. You'll often end up trying local dishes not served in the mainstream places, and have a chance to test out your Portuguese! If you do choose this option be sure to take care with the food, ensuring that it is fresh and recently cooked. Also take care with salads, which are frequently washed in tap water that can leave you with stomach trouble.
5) Shop around online for a cheap insurance policy
Travel insurance is an essential part of any trip, and thanks to the Internet you can directly compare a wide range of policies to see which fits all your criteria and comes in at the lowest price. Be sure to check the small print, and spend some time hunting online to see if there are any negative consumer reviews of the policy that you want to purchase before committing.
6) Travel slower if you have flexibility
Time is money, and trying to cover a lot of ground on vacation is possible but is going to result in higher costs. Brazil is a huge country and the last thing you want to do is spend most of your holiday flying all over the place and just transiting between airports. Try extending your holiday to allow for more time spent in less places, or stick to a couple of areas that are close together geographically. You'll enjoy your break a lot more, and get to know the places you visit much better.
7) Go through an agent or tour operator
With the Internet offering so many resources to piece together your own Brazilian vacation, this may seem like counter-intuitive advice, but travel agents and tour operators are often in a position to get much cheaper deals than independent consumers due to business relationships or purchasing services in bulk. If the agency or tour operator is based in the country of destination, that also generally means that their operating overheads are lower, allowing them to offer very competitive Brazilian vacation packages and tours. The other obvious benefit of using an agent is saving the long hours spent trawling the Internet looking for ways to save a couple of bucks on a flight, not to mention the peace of mind that comes from having a local expert sort it all out for you.
The above tips should be able to stop you getting caught out on your next Brazilian vacation. A strong economy is good news for almost everyone, but it doesn't mean that you should accept a higher price for your trip.
About the author
Gary Sargent is the Managing Director of the tour companies Escaped to Peru and Escaped to Latin America and has lived in South America for over 10 years. Gary is passionate about Latino life, people, customs and places. To learn more or to book your next adventure please visit http://www.escapedtolatinamerica.com