Travel to Sao Paulo

Flying to Sao Paulo

British Airways and TAM Linhas Aeras offer direct flights to São Paulo from the UK. Indirect services include American Airlines, Iberia, Lufthansa, and TAP. Cheap flights to São Paulo can be found in the low season between April-May and October-November.

Flight times

From London – 11 hours 30 minutes; New York – 9 hours 45 minutes; Los Angeles – 13 hours; Toronto – 10 hours; Sydney – 22 hours.

Travel by road

Summary:

Driving into the city is a daunting prospect. Routes such as the freeway into São Paulo from Santos have high accident rates while car jacking can be an issue around the outskirts of São Paulo. Traffic lights may be ignored particularly at night if a driver fears for their safety. The minimum driving age is 18 and foreigners require a valid national driving license. Vehicles drive on the right-hand side of the road and speed limits are 120kph (74mph) on highways into São Paulo and vary between 40kph (24mph) to 90kph (55mph) within the city.

Emergency breakdown service:

Car Club Do Brasil (tel: (21) 2262 4800; www.carclubdobrasil.com.br).

Routes:

Major highways converging on the city include the SP-150 (Anchieta) and SP-160 (Imigrantes) from Santos on the coast. The BR-116 (Dutra) features tolls and is accessible from Rio but a more scenic coastal option is BR-101, then SP-55 from Rio, via Santos. Another alternative for drivers from Rio is the Senna highway (SP-070) - a faster toll road. The SP-330 (Via Anhangüera) connects the city from northern regions of the state and from Minas Gerais state.

Driving times:

From Rio - 5 hours; Salvador - 20 hours; Brasilia - 12 hours; Foz do Iguaçu - 12 hours.

Coaches:

With numerous bus companies serving destinations from all over Brazil, the three major coach stations resemble small cities. Terminal do Tietê (Avenida Cruzeiro do Sul, Santana) includes services to Rio and international departures. Terminal do Jabaquara (Rua Jequitibás, Jabaquara) has regular buses to Santos. Terminal da Barra Funda (Rua Mário de Andrade, Barra Funda) includes destinations in western Brazilian such as Foz do Iguaçu. For stations and operators, consult terminal operator Socicam (tel: (11) 2223 7199;www.socicam.com.br).

Travel by rail

Services:

The city isn’t currently served by rail services beyond São Paulo state although plans exist by Agência Nacional de Transporte Terrestres (www.antt.gov.br) to create a high-speed rail link to Rio in time for the 2014 World Cup.

There is a substantial suburban rail network within the city serving destinations within São Paulo state. The city’s main rail stations include Barra Funda, Júlio Prestes, and da Luz.

Operators:

The main suburban rail operator is Companhia Paulista de Transporte Metropolitano (CPTM) (tel: (0800) 055 0121 in Brazil only; www.cptm.sp.gov.br).

Edited by Tina Banerjee
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