So what are the general tips for Carnival? Well, first of all you can save a lot of money by planning ahead. Getting a plane ticket to Rio in December is really expensive. If you already are in South America you can go overland with the buses, they don’t raise the prices, ie.: If you plan to travel around in South America and to spend Carnival in Rio it may be a good idea not to make Brazil your first destination. Making good deals for accommodation also gets more complicated the closer to Carnival you get.
Tips for Carnival – Safety
Safety then? Well, even though it’s a lot better than its reputation, Rio de Janeiro cannot be considered a particulary safe place. Your biggest worry would be getting robbed and Carnival is high season for pick pocket artists, street robbers and other scoundrels; They travel from all over South America to take advantage of the abundancy of rich tourists gathered in one place. To avoid getting robbed you should always try to be smart: Don’t dress fancy, keep that camera deep in your pocket, leave the smart phone at home, only carry what is necessary and avoid dark or empty streets. Go with your feeling; If it looks dodgy it probably is. If you are getting robbed, just let them have what they want, resisting can be really dangerous!
Tips for Carnival – Be Informed
In order to have a great Carnival it’s good to know a bit about it beforehand, actually reading all I have written under my Carnival Section would give you a head start and from that you can easily plan your Carnival in what way is best for you. It’s about what day to go to Sambódromo and to what section, to pick the right street parties and how to find the information about them. Carnival does not, like many people think, turn the whole of Rio into a big party, many parts of Rio are empty and most places are closed. It’s essential to know when and where the party will start. But it’s not possible to plan everything, rain can change things completely, always try to have backup options. If you don’t know what to do just go out and open your ears; whenever you hear drums, go there and you most likely will have a party to remember!
Some more Tips for Carnival
– Since almost all ATM machines run out of money on the Saturday or the Sunday, make sure you have enough to last you until Wednesday when they open again.
– Arranging everything through a hotel is safe, but also expensive. Comparing prices with a travel agent is advisable.
– Almost all Brazilians you meet will say that all prices you pay are way too expensive. Don’t worry, it’s a cultural characteristic. Asking them if they can help you to find that cheap apartment or those almost free Carnival costumes will make 95% of them change the subject.
Ok, that’s it, that was my general tips for Carnival, hopefully they will be of help!