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I’m going to Rio for New Years, so now that I’m done with my international mileage run, it was time to apply for a tourist visa. Brazil requires a touruist visa for all US citizens (in reciprocity for the fee the US charges Brazilians to visit) so my journey to secure a tourist visas had several steps. If you are considering a trip to Brazil, you may want to read over my easy tips to securing a visa.
1) Go to the Brazilian Consulate website for your city (New York site) and read about the process
2) Visit your local post office and get
a) 2×2 Black and white passport photo, with white background ($14)
b) Money order for $140 made out to Consulate General of Brazil
3) Head to the consulate and bring with you:
a) Passport with at least one empty page and valid for 6+ months (mandatory)
b) Tourist visa request form (sign within the box) (mandatory)
c) A copy of your itinerary to and from Brazil (mandatory)
d) A copy of your hotel stay/accommodations (optional, but have it just in case)
e) Proof of residency: license or print-out of a utility showing your address- (optional, but have it just in case)
f) A magazine to read while you wait- though they also have no problems with cell phone use
Once you get to the consulate, take a number and wait your turn. While waiting, make sure your picture is glued to your Tourist Visa Request form and that the form is signed. When you approach the agent, have your passport ready and all forms inside with your ticket number on the outside. When I did this, the agent was relieved that I actually took the time to make sure my forms were filled out, itineraries provided, picture glued and form signed. It took approximately 15 seconds for her to give me a receipt to pick up my passport and visa stamp 8 days later. I’d recommend going at least 2 weeks prior to departure in order to give yourself enough leeway. Remember- you have to leave your passport with the consulate, so don’t plan any international travel in that time period.
You could also just pay a visa agency $100+ to do this for you, but I work next to the Brazilian consulate, so that didn’t really make sense.
Overall, it took me about 2 hours from start to finish and $155, but I’m confident my trip (first time) will more than make up for the time and cost. I’ll be sure to provide a detailed trip report when I’m back!