Airports, São Paulo
Airport Bus Service is the name of a company (yes, the name is in English, but don't let that fool you) that provides excellent transportation options between major transportation hubs in the city of S?o Paulo.
I have used this service to go between the two major S?o Paulo airports ( Guarulhos and Congonhas ) to connect between international and local flights. However, the company also serves several of the main intercity bus terminals in S?o Paulo as well.
Therefore, don't look at the S?o Paulo International Airport at Guarulhos as your only transportation hub when you arrive in this city. It is possible to get economical connections to the rest of the southern part of the country, no matter if by bus or plane, without having to wait for that rare domestic Brazilian flight that leaves the Guarulhos airport - as most flights to and from that airport are internatinal.
If you don't know Portuguese, find a trustworthy local who is going the same direction, as most of the bus people speak only very limited English.
From Guarulhos Airport to the city of Sao Paulo travelers can either take a taxi or a bus.
Prepaid taxi fares are available with Taxi Guarucoop (tel. 011/6440-7070), to all of São Paulo, as well as to the suburbs and surrounding communities. Sample fares: Congonhas Airport R$61 (US$30.50), São Paulo Centro and Tietê R$46 (US$23), Cerqueira Cesar and Jardins R$54 (US$27), Avenida Paulista R$54 (US$27), and Liberdade R$53 (US$26.50).
One can also take a regular metered taxi, flag fall starts at R$3.20 (US$1.60) and goes up R$0.80 (US40¢) per km. If traffic is good, these taxis end up being a little cheaper, but some days traffic is so congested that the prepaid ride turns out to be a much better deal.
In my opinion the best, safest and also cheapest method to get from the airport to the city-centre or to the domestic airport Congonhas is the Airport Service Bus.
They operate four different shuttle bus routes: to Congonhas Airport, to Praca da Republica, to Avenida Paulista (stopping at major hotels along the street), and to the Rodoviario Tietê (bus station). Cost is R$21 per person (US$7), and each route takes approximately 50 minutes. Buses depart daily about every 30 minutes from 6am to 11pm, and then hourly overnight.
Timetables can be found under:
When travelling from Guarulhos Airport to Gongonhas Airport, please remember that in general after leaving the aircraft you have to go trough customs and passport control (which always does take a loooong looong time there) and that you still has to get the luggage, etc. and probably will get stuck some time in a traffic jam (depends on the time)...
so count on around 2-3 hours to get to Gongonhas airport from Guarulhos!
São Paulo has two main airports. All international flights arrive at Guarulhos Airport (GRU), 18 1/2 miles (30km) northeast of the city-centre. Paulistas will also refer to this airport as Cumbica.
Guarulhos Airport is the largest in Brazil and sure one of the biggest in Southamerica.
Unlike airports in Europe and North America, the international airport of São Paulo has a duty-free shop upon arrival before clearing customs, where you can purchase up to US$500 of goods. Once you have cleared customs you can change money or traveler's checks or use an ATM to obtain cash in Reais (R$). The American Express office is open daily from 6:30am to 10:30pm and charges no commission on changing cash or traveler's checks (as long as they are American Express checks), located in Terminal 1 Arrivals. The Banco do Brasil charges a US$20 flat rate for traveler's checks transactions and US$5 flat rate for cash transactions. The ATMs are compatible with Visa/Plus, located in Terminal 1 Arrivals.
Unfortunately the airport does not have any official webpage (at least I could not find one), but there is a page from "Infraero" where you can find the informations you want:
(page does take some time to loud!)
São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport
PO Box 3061-Guarulhos
São Paulo 07141-970
Telephone: (0)11 6445 2945
Fax: (0)11 6445 3173 or 6412 3335
For $58R's One Way you can take an AIR-Shuttle between GRU-International into CGH (Downtown Airport) on Ocean Air (Which also serves many other cities say like Macae)
This is much faster and easier than the bus PLUS NO traffic problems to deal with.
Be careful, the dosmetic flights are from/to the Cancan (haha, I will fix the name later) airport, located SouthWest of the peripheral.
The international flights are from/to the Garung (haha, I will fix the name later) airport, located NorthEast of the peripheral.
A cab will take you at least an hour to commute from one to the other, careful about rush hour.
If you need a fairly reasonable way to arrive to the Placa Republica or the Paulista area, take the airport shuttle bus and then walk to your hotel. If you by chance meet up with another person who is also waiting for the bus, split the cost with a cab to the airport. The cost is comparable to taking the shuttle bus with less stops and less time.
Most of the international airlines have a 'pit stop' in Sao Paulo, before going to Rio de Janeiro. I would consider a 'stop over' if possible with your ticket. But you need at least 3 - 4 days to explore the city. Driving from Rio (which I did) takes about 4 - 4,5 ours. The roads are great, but there is a lot of traffic.
You have the Metro. Otherwise; why dont rent a car? The signs and the roads make it surprisengly easy to find your way (if you know where you going...). See my Rio pages for more info about car rental.
Travel by companies such as TAM, Varig, Vasp, etc
Don't rent cars, traffic is terrible and, unless you have a native to drive you around you will get probably get lost(streets and avenues don't follow a pattern like New York)
Use the subway, taxis and buses.
For air travel, one can't beat the convenience of Guarulhos International Airport (GRU). See oncierge.com for more information. Unfortunately, there is no official web page for the airport.
From GRU, one can take a shuttle bus to pretty much any part of the city or surrounding suburbs. Here's a picture looking out from the airport exit at the bus stop.
They may not be 777s anymore, but UA does have wonderful non-stop DAILY 767 service to GRU Sao Paulo from IAD (Washington-Dulles,) and ORD (Chicago O'Hare.)
The main airlines arrives at Guarulhos Int. Airport (GRU).
Bus and Metro, are easy to use. Take all information you need at Information desk at airport.