- Purchase the complete Expat Arrivals Brazil Guide (PDF)
Expats living in Brazil will find that while they can immerse themselves in their adopted home, keeping in touch is easy thanks to its well-developed telecommunication and internet resources.
Internet in Brazil
High-speed internet is readily available and fairly reliable in most Brazilian cities. There are several broadband access options available for home use, including DSL and cable. Service can be fairly expensive depending on the download speed a person wants. Bundling internet service with television and/or a phone will lower the monthly cost. In rural areas of Brazil, however, the infrastructure is less developed and it may be difficult to find service.
WiFi availability is increasing in major cities and tourist destinations. A range of locations from coffee shops to public parks offer free WiFi hotspots. Expats should be careful when using expensive electronics such as computers, iPads and smartphones in outdoor locations given the threat of theft.
Mobile phones in Brazil
As with the rest of Brazil’s infrastructure, the mobile phone industry is struggling to keep up with explosive growth. Service providers and the government continue to invest in improved service, but throughout the country, cellular coverage ranges from excellent to non-existent.
Mobile phone use in Brazil is high. All types of mobile phones, from the most basic to the highest-quality smartphone, are available. However, these are very expensive, so expats may want to bring an unlocked phone with them from their home country.
Expats in Brazil can choose from a variety of calling plans, including pay-as-you-go models, with any of the major providers. Plans tend to include calling, texting, and/or data.
Fixed landlines telephones in Brazil
A lot of business still takes place over the phone in Brazil. Therefore, businesses and residences typically have fixed phone lines. That said, expats can get away without having one at home if they have a mobile phone. The providers for fixed lines vary by state.
To have a landline connected, expats will need proof of address, identification, and a CPF (a Brazilian tax identification number). It can be cost-effective to opt for bundled packages.
Postal services in Brazil
Brazil has a well-developed postal service. Post offices are plentiful, and mailing letters and packages is relatively simple. The service can be slow but is generally reliable.
Receiving packages can present some challenges for expats. The country has very high import taxes. Packages sent to Brazil from abroad may be subject to fees of multiple times the value of the contents. Any package stopped by customs will also take longer to arrive than expected.
Media and news in Brazil
International and local news sources are widely accessible in Brazil. Online sources can be reached from almost anywhere. In cities, newsstands will sell a range of Brazilian newspapers and magazines. Larger stands and bookstores will have foreign titles available as well – for a substantial markup on the original cover price.
►For more on adjusting to the Brazilian way of life, see Culture Shock in Brazil
Are you an expat living in Brazil?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Brazil. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
Jennifer Sikes is an American writer currently living in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, with her husband and dog. She has travelled extensively in her personal and professional life across Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, and South America. Website: www.anotefrombrazil.wordpress.com
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