Rio Olympics Travel Advice
With less than 100 days to go until Brazil host the 23rd Olympic Games in its capital city, Rio, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued some tips and advice for Olympic travellers.
The FCO aims to keep UK citizens safe and well whilst travelling across the Globe. And travel to the world’s largest sporting event is no different.
Foreign and Commonwealth Office Minister James Duddridge said, “We are expecting thousands of Britons to make the journey to Rio for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, and we want all of them to have a great time. There are careful preparations being made by our staff in Brazil to make sure our athletes and visitors are well supported, and all of those travelling should make sure they also prepare properly.”
If you're planning to visit the summer Olympics in Rio, check out our advice on not only on staying safe and well when travelling to Brazil, but also some great advice before travel.
Much of the following advice is relevant to travellers to the South American country whether they’re travelling specifically for the Games or just to see one of the most diverse counties in the world.
- Passport Validation
Check your passport’s expiry date. To gain entry into Brazil you must have 6 months remaining on your passport from the date of entry into the country.
- Travel Insurance
Do NOT travel without suitable travel insurance. Brazil is not in Europe, therefore you will need a policy that covers worldwide travel. What’s more, if you are planning, or likely to get ‘bitten’ by the sporting bug, ensure that your insurance covers you for any physical activities you undertake. For example, water sports on the beach need specific cover – these activities are not covered in basic travel insurance.
- Book Accommodation Before You Travel
The FCO warns that demand for hotel accommodation will far outstrip supply, therefore ensure you have booked your accommodation before you travel. Rio is an exciting and vibrant city, but it is also dangerous and you do not want to be roaming the streets at night with nowhere to stay.
- Internal Flights
If you’re taking the opportunity to travel around the country whilst you are there, ensure you book your internal flights in advance. Again, the country is expected to be extremely busy during this time across all modes of transport.
- Book Tickets In Advance, And From Authorised Sellers
As with any major sporting event, rogue traders and fake ticket distributors will be selling tickets to vulnerable tourists. Therefore, the FCO advises that you buy your sporting tickets from only authorised and bona fide sellers. Check credentials carefully, especially when buying online. Be sure that you are buying tickets first hand, not on the second hand market – these tickets can often be duplicates and you’ll be refused entry.
Do not be tempted to travel to Brazil and buy your tickets when you get there, especially from Ticket Touts at sporting venues – touting is a criminal offence in Brazil, despite this, many fraudulent traders will be operating in the area.
Ensure that you are fully up to date with your vaccines before travelling.
- Learn the Lingo
A few courtesy words of Portuguese – the major language in Brazil – wouldn’t go a miss while you’re in Brazil, the odd “thank you” (“obrigado”), “hello” (olá) and “goodbye” (tchau) particularly as English and Spanish aren’t as widely spoken as many tourists think.
This year’s Olympic Games are to be held during 5th – 21st August.
If you're flying from Gatwick, don't forget to book your Gatwick meet and greet parking.