Cheap Flights to Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro overview

Rio de Janeiro is synonymous with its glitzy Carnival, Sugarloaf Mountain, the Christ statue on Corcovado, and the "itsy-bitsy teeny-weeny" bikinis littering the beach at Ipanema. Brazil's lively cultural capital nestles between the sea and the mountains, and is home to Tijuca Forest, the world's biggest urban forest, which was completely replanted during the late 19th century. The city is the capital of the state of Rio de Janeiro, encompassing most of Brazil's major tourist attractions.

Tourists booking flights to Rio are advised to bring their open minds and attitudes. Temptation runs rapid in Rio -- if the samba doesn't seduce you, the people will. The city moves to the music of the choro, samba and bossa nova, all of which form the principal source of Brazilian national culture. Rio's infamous annual carnival is a wild, colourful and hedonistic affair that draws together both rich and poor, who flood the streets for the world's largest samba parade on the Sambodromo.

Rio de Janeiro climate

If you like the heat you will love Rio de Janeiro where the temperature rarely drops below 20 degrees (Celsius). Rio has a classical tropical climate. December to March is summer, and it is very humid with temperatures topping 38 degrees. December has the most rain and July and August the least. Winter is short, lasting only from June to September. Daytime temperatures in winter are in the 20s and the nights are cooler.

When to fly to Rio de Janeiro

Peak Season:

Carnival, usually in February, is “the” time to come to Rio. To take in some sights and museums, you will need to arrive a few days before the party starts and linger a few days after. Flights to Rio and hotel prices are higher during Carnival. Book your hotel and Rio de Janeiro flight at least a year in advance.

Another grand party is New Year’s Eve, called Reveillon. Millions pack the beach for the all-night celebration, music, and fireworks.

Off Season:

The city is less crowded and prices are a bit lower in winter, from May to October, with the exception of Reveillon.

Getting around Rio de Janeiro

The Rio de Janeiro subway doesn’t reach all parts of the city, but it is air conditioned and quicker and cheaper than the buses, which can take you anywhere. You will need to learn enough Portuguese to ask for directions though, since few drivers speak English. Avoid taking buses at night; they can be a hotspot for robberies. The private Fresco buses have regular stops and can be flagged down anywhere on the way to the beach, downtown or the airport. If you’re travelling anywhere in the city at night, take a taxi to play it safe. There are plenty of taxis around, and you shouldn’t have trouble flagging one down. For a more reliable and air-conditioned cab, your best bet is one of the radio taxis and cab companies that serves hotels. It’s always a good idea to negotiate your fare before you get in the car if the meter isn’t running. If you rent a car, stay alert and keep the car doors locked. You’ll have to deal with heavy traffic, poorly labeled streets and scarce parking.

Rio de Janeiro insider information

  • Take a cable-car ride up Sugarloaf Mountain. The journey to the top is done in two stages. The first cable car climbs more than 213 metres up Urca Hill. Then, on another cable car, tourists travel 396 metres to the summit from which there are wonderful views of Copacabana beach and over the city.
  • The world-famous statue of Christ the Redeemer is 38 metres high and stands at the peak of the mountain in the Tijuca Forest National Park.
  • The botanical gardens are home to about 2,600 species of plant life. The gardens were created by the Prince Regent of Portugal in 1808 as a temporary home for imported plants while they were being acclimatized. There are animals too such as toucans, tanagers, marmoset monkeys and exotic butterflies.
  • World-famous beaches include Copacabana, where Rio's New Year's celebrations take place, and Ipanema, famous in the song The Girl from Ipanema.
  • For retail therapy, check out the upmarket Rua Garcia D'Avila or for budget-conscious travellers, the hippie fair at Praça General Osorio is a good place to pick up souvenirs such as wooden sculptures, leather goods and artworks.
  • The Museu Nacional de Belas Artes was inspired by the Louvre. It dates from 1908 and is Rio de Janeiro’s main fine arts museum. It displays artifacts from the 19th century to today from several famous Brazilian artists including Victor Meirelles, Pedro Americo and Candido Portinari as well as foreign and contemporary artists.

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Prices found by our users for local departures to Rio de Janeiro

Cheapest flights to Brazil

How much do things cost in Rio de Janeiro?

Local draught beer (0.5 litre)
C$ 2.73
3 course meal for 2
C$ 46.86
C$ 2.32
Coke/Pepsi (0.33 litre)
C$ 1.88
Clothing & Shoes
Pair of Nike shoes
C$ 122.37
Pair of jeans
C$ 81.35
Large bottle of water
C$ 0.92
A dozen eggs
C$ 2.11
Bottle of wine
C$ 11.71
Pack of Marlboro cigarettes
C$ 3.12
How much does transport cost in Rio de Janeiro?
1 km taxi journey
C$ 1
Petrol (1 litre)
C$ 2
Taxi - fixed fee
C$ 2
1 hour taxi waiting fee
C$ 11

International departures to Rio de Janeiro