6 Things To Know Before You Move to Brazil

As one of the fastest developing countries in the world, Brazil is on its way to becoming a global power to be reckoned with. In Brazil you can find a little bit of everything: whether you’re looking for innovative business models, a vibrant local culture, or opportunities for travel or leisure. Accepting a job in Brazil can lead to some of the greatest experiences of your life, as long as you know what to expect before heading to this wonderful country. Read on to discover our 6 quick tips for before making the big move!

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1. It’s not that cheap


While most South American countries have garnered the reputation of being cheap places to live and work, Brazil isn’t exactly one of them. While renting in Sao Paolo could be considered cheap (around $600 USD for a one-bedroom in the city center), things like furnishing an apartment can be very pricey – usually around three times the cost of furnishing an apartment in the U.S. It’s generally cheaper to ship your furniture from overseas than to buy new in Brazil.


2. It’s who you know


Work culture in Brazil functions a little differently than in the U.S. or U.K. In Brazil you don’t usually get a job unless you put in a lot of footwork. This means network, network, network. Attend events related to the industry you’re interested in, put yourself out there, and try to meet and form as many connections as you can. It’s who you know that will most likely land you that coveted position.

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3. It’s all in the words


A lot of us like to assume that you only need English to get by anywhere in the world, but this doesn’t ring true for Brazil. Consider this: more people in South America speak Portuguese than Spanish or English! This is partially because Brazil is such a huge country, but also due to the fact that most locals don’t have a working knowledge of other languages besides Portuguese. The lesson here is: you’ll need to learn the language before you go.


4. It’s all talk, no action


One of the biggest differences between Brazilian culture and, say, U.K. culture is how much people love to talk in Brazil. You should know that just because a local friend is talking about big weekend plans, it doesn’t mean it’s necessarily going to happen. A lot of times it’s just a case of all talk and no action, so watch out which plans you take seriously.

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5. It’s the sponsorship that counts


Getting a job once you’re already in Brazil can be incredibly tough. To get a work visa you have to prove that you can do a job that a local cannot, and many times the process involves paying a lawyer to help you with your case. It’s always a good idea to get a company to sponsor you before you move to Brazil, this way your visa is taken care of and you have one less thing to worry about!


6. It’s safety first


Ever since Brazil was selected to host both the World Cup and the Olympics the government has done a lot of work making the country a safer place. However, this doesn’t mean that you should just throw caution to the wind when out and about. Be aware of your surroundings. One wrong turn could take you into a dangerous part of town and if you’re a foreigner who looks like they’re lost you could be in danger of getting mugged. Just keep tabs on where you are going and don’t carry huge amounts of cash or expensive items on your person and you should be fine!

Knowing what to expect is the first step to preparing for your big move to Brazil. Your second, and probably most important, step should be to prepare yourself linguistically for your big adventure. Sign up for some excellent Portuguese classes and learn how to communicate with the locals. Free online Portuguese placement tests are also available to help you keep your skills on point. Then head down south for a life full of adventure, new friends, and great cultural experiences!