Air travel within Brazil

Oct 7th, 2004, 09:43 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 6
Air travel within Brazil

Hi.
I am flying into Sao Paulo at the end of the month and want to go from there to Rio, then on to Goiania and back to Sao Paulo. I have my tickets to Sao Paulo and back from the US already but was wondering about the best way to get the tickets to do the rest? I have heard that it's best to wait and just get them there. Any advice would be appreciated.
Thanks!
Mike
TheFijMan is offline  
Oct 7th, 2004, 08:26 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 621
IMHO, it *IS* easier to get tickets *IN* Brazil than to try and do it ahead of time from the U.S.

Lots of reasons why:
* there isn't a good way to directly
compare fares (even sites like
Travelocity typically just show TAM
and Varig fares --- what about VASP,
Gol, BRA, Trip ???)
* some web sites don't have an English
language option
* some Brazilian airline sites won't
take a U.S.-issued credit card (I hear
Gol will take a U.S.-issued AmEx, but
*NOT* Visa or MasterCard)
* some Brazilian carriers will require
you to have a paper ticket. *WHEN*
you can get these issued in the U.S.,
there are often surcharges, delivery
fees, delays, etc.
* there are *not* usually higher fares
for tickets bought even only a couple
days ahead of time (though flights can
sell out)

I would still recommend looking around
as much as you can ahead of time. Try
to book the fares ahead of time...if
you don't run into problems, great!

Also, if you're doing a lot of travel,
an air pass might save some money. While
VASP allegedly has the chepeast of the
passes, I couldn't find a local agent
who would sell me one, and their U.S.
office in Miami never friggin' answers
the phone.

BTW: Here are a few web sites to check out:
* www.vasp.com.br
* www.voegol.com.br
* www.voebra.com.br
* www.varig.com.br
* www.tam.com.br
* www.airtrip.com.br

Have fun!
Mark
www.tiogringo.com
TioGringo is offline  
Oct 11th, 2004, 07:15 PM
  #3  
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 6
Thanks for the info Mark. We will try and "wing" it.

Mike
TheFijMan is offline  
Oct 18th, 2004, 07:30 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
Someone told me that Gol now flies from Rio to Natal. Has anyone flown this airline? Do you think they are dependable? It appears that their fares are much cheaper.
italyss is offline  
Oct 18th, 2004, 09:24 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 587
CHEAPER = BAD, POOR, UNRELIABLE, FRUSTRATIONS, ETC.....
I'VE FLOWN VARIG AND NO COMPLAINTS...EXCELLENT SERVICE, CLEAN AIRPLANES AND RIGHT ON TIME.
HAVE HEARD GOOD COMMENTS ABOUT TAM TOO..
miguelgcuadra is offline  
Oct 18th, 2004, 09:37 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
Yes, you are right! I will stick with Varig. Also, Gol only accepts American Express for international travelers (only Brazilian VISA and MC), and I am not a big fan of AMEX.
italyss is offline  
Oct 18th, 2004, 12:39 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 23
I fly Gol or Tam a couple of times a year from Sao Paulo to Florianopolis and have never had a problem- I don't necessarily think that cheaper means worse. I have had nothing but good experiences with these two airlines.
scootie is offline  
Oct 18th, 2004, 08:38 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 621
I disagree completely with miguelcuadra.

Gol runs a very tight ship and they're a dynamic, young, turn-on-a-dime kind of company. They run their airline a lot like JetBlue does in the U.S., with brand-spanking new aircraft and an emphasis on fast turnaround and good service.

I have flown Gol and have NOTHING but good things to say about them. Their orange shirts might be a little garish, but fast, efficient flight checkins and flights that tend to push back from the gates AHEAD of schedule and arrive on time are the kinds of things that will make ME a happy traveler.

It helps that they have some of the most competitive fares in the Brazilian skies...often undercutting Varig and TAM (which have worse ontime performance records and older fleets).

It is true that Gol takes only American Express on their web site, but that's for security reasons. You can use your Visa/Mastercard if you buy in person or through a travel agent, just not on the Gol web site. (At least Gol will accept a foreign AmEx card --- many latin carriers will not even do that on their web sites because of the high number of fraud attempts).

Have a good trip!
Mark
www.tiogringo.com
TioGringo is offline  
Oct 19th, 2004, 06:35 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 107
Thanks for the info on Gol, because the prices are much better!
italyss is offline  
Oct 20th, 2004, 05:42 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 145
Yes, Gol's aircrafts are quite new. It is supposed to be Brazil's budget airline. We had very bad experience with VASP (long delays and old aircraft.) Gol has a ticket counter at Sao Paulo airport. You can buy tickets with them in person. However, some of the best fairs are from the internet. Unfortunately we were not able to get it worked last time when we tried to use our AMEX card to book. Maybe you will have better experience.
xgao is offline  
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