This is an older airport but has the basics covered .The money exchange is just after the baggage area. We noticed they exchanged Canadian dollars at a good rate even though our Lonely Planet book advised otherwise...could have saved on the exchange rate... There is supposed to be an ATM upstairs but we were too exhausted after our overnight sleepless trip to look .
Our exhaustion explains why we went with the Radio cab. The line of windows offering this service are the first ones you see. They asked for 90Real( I negioted for 80Real) This is over double the cost of a metered black and yellow taxi taht are lined up out front!!
the price of the flight betweeen sao paulo and rio depends on the kind of ticket you get, how early you book, promotions,etc...; check the airlines sites like GOL and TAM to know the prices and get the best fares for your dates
Negotiating customs is no easy matter. The luggage area is in the basement and is poorly laid out. Finding your luggage is only half the battle, as there is always a long and confusing line to get to customs. Some people wait hours. Here it does not pay to be nice. Jump in the line as near to customs as is possible and pretend you are unaware that you have jumped in.
Trafic out of the airport is a mess. The arrival in Rio de Janeiro and travel out of the airport are by far the worst experience that you will have here.
Brasil requires a visa for US travelers, so be sure to have your paperwork in order.
Sure you should go to the airport with enough time to play around, and Rafael decided to stop in the street where people usually fish...the water is polluted, so i wonder if they really eat what they fish! But the surroundings are quite interesting and you can have an idea about how big Rio is. We took this picture when we were taking my cousin Enne to the airport, and it is also Rafael's new car, and we take our friends to every little corner of the State with this FIAT.
TAM is now the biggest airline company in Brazil, it flies to many different destinations in the country and the fares are quite okay, it is a matter of lucky to find real good prices, so you always have to check in the internet searching for better air fare.
Their timetable is quite practical and it is easy to build a travelling destination according to your needs!
For instance you can easily combine Iguazu Falls, Rio and Salvador in just one flight!
Due to the air crisis that Brazil is facing right now, lots of delay can be expected, so just be patient and try to organize your truip with some advance and with the help of a travelling expert in Brazil.
TAM DESERVES OUR TRUST BECAUSE SOME WHILE AGO THEY HAD A TERRIBLE ACCIDENT MOSTLY CAUSED BY THE BAD CONDITIONS OF THE AIRPORT FIELD AND THE BAD WEATHER. So I always prefer checking the flights first at TAM.
THEY HAVE ECELLENT SERVICES, AND THEY REALLY SERVE YOU SOME WARM SNACKS AND BEER. AND YOU CAN DRINK COCA COLA AND THE DELICIOUS GUARANÁ ANTARCTICA.
GOL JUST GIVE YOU PEANUTS AND HORRIBLE PEPSI COLA
From october 2006 to may 2007 this airport was quite familiar, each two months I was there, first to visit Rafael and spend some time in Rio in order to solve many details about living in Rio, moving from São Luis.
Delayed flights...Once I spend the whole day trying to get in Rio!!!!
I remember it was a great moment when I arrived in Rio and very sad moment when I had to go to this airport and leave! then finally I decided to come!
Rafael was there everytime and we like enjoying ourselves alot, telling jokes and running like children in the airport corridors.
This is a indoor bridge connecting the oldest and the newest part of the Airport.
For flights outside Rio, TAM and VARIG you may use terminal 2, and for GOL, OCEAN AIR AND BRA terminal one!
Most of international flights get here and leave from TERMINAL ONE!
Rio has two airports, one international and another one domestic...All the time you come to Rio you will stop atthe international airport.
Rio's International Airport is now called AEROPORTO INTERNACIONAL ANTONIO CARLOS JOBIM, there are two terminals.
TERMINAL ONE - which is indeed the old part named GALEAO
TERMINAL TWO - Very recent part of the airport which gave the airport the new name.
Until today when you buy your ticket you will read GIG in your air ticket
THE DOMESTIC AIRPORT IS LOCATED CLOSE TO THE CITY CENTRE AND IT IS CALLED SANTOS DUMONT!
Learn from my mistake. Varig Airlines was Brazil's (and one of the world's) finest airline. It was great once. It was in business for 75 years. You were already in Brazil the minute you boarded the plane. UNFORTUNATELY, after 75 years, and after I bought tickets online months earlier, Varig went BANKRUPT! I lost all money spent on two round-trip tickets. So do yourself a favor and check the financial condition of the airline carrier BEFORE you buy your tickets! Below is what I wrote BEFORE the bankruptcy and the loss of my trip to Rio.
Inasmuch as you all can choose which airline to fly to Rio, be good to yourself and FLY VARIG!!! It is a world class airline, with unequaled customer service. From fresh flowers in the bathrooms, to free alcoholic beverages during the flight, you are going to love Varig Airlines. It's a long flight to Rio from most places, so why not arrive in a great mood?
With the exception of Quantas (Australia), I believe Varig Airlines has a near the top ranking for safety. I have nothing but nice memories of Varig flights, which I cannot say for others I've flown to Rio.
Start living the "vida boa" before you ever arrive in Rio. Fly Varig!!! (I am in no way related to anyone who works for or owns anything Varig. I get no kick-back from Varig. I am just telling it like it is).
Nothing like getting Guarana and pao de queijo onboard before ever getting to Rio!
If you need to change airports in Sao Paulo (RioGuarulhos/ GRU to Congonhas/ CGH) for Rio Santos Dumont (SDU) , read on.
Once you exit the custom area into the hall , head straight , past the coffee and fast food place within the same lobby ; just steps away, you shall reach the tourist's info booth. Or, simply ask.
The staff at the booth will tell you where to buy your airport transfer bus tickets for CGH. You need to walk out of the bldg, turn left and about 3 offices down on your left, is the bus ticket office.Staff speaks English.
Ticket to CGH was 24R in Nov. Then you will proceed to the specific numbered bus station within the same area for boarding. Usually seats are assigned but people simply sat anywhere if it's not too full.
The A/C bus ride takes about 35min to 1 hour depending on traffic, since you'll be going from one end to a different end in Sao Paulo, through the city, and noon traffic there is not good as you may see. For first timers, Sao Paulo is a huge concrete jungle, with endless city scapes,so you may want to have your digi cam ready.
Once arrived at CGH, collect your luggage and head towards the entrance at the left side of the building.You'll need to go up a level, and through the shopping area to reach the check in counters. Staff at Varig speaks minimal English, but enough for the check in.
In case you are hungry, after going through gates security, there are cute bistro's that serve excellent sandwiches, breads, food and beer. The one next to H. Stern was pretty good and not expensive at all. Again, staffs spoke little English, but were very friendly to help.
Caution: once at the proper gate for Rio's Santos Dumont (SDU) , keep checking if your flight has changed gate number. Ours changed 2 times and it was never announced or shown on the monitor. Do that and keep asking the airline ground crew.
Flight from CGH to Rio SDU, is about 55 min. You'll get served drinks and local hot snacks.
Everything was good expect that the Boeing-747-400 was a bit old which means that the interior such as seats, overhead panel & toilet was old. But service was good, the movies were the latest, food was just ok - small portions ;-) lots of free drinks.
if you are coming from europe then the portugese airline TAP has some of the best connections.
i have used them several times and it´s one of my favorite airlines.
service on board their planes is very good and they serve free alcohol during the whole trip too.
Whatever you do, do not fly Iberia, they are the worst.
My flight from Madrid to Rio was cancelled, no one told you why, they just packed us off for a 2 hour coach drive to a hotel outside of Madrid to sleep for 4 hours before another 2 hour drive back to the airport.
No explanation, no apology and they couldn't even put us up in a Madrid hotel.
They kept your luggage and woke you up when the coach was downstairs and ready to return to the airport, so you couldn't even shower before the 8 hours flight to Rio and spending many hours travelling to Madrid.
The flight attendants tried to ignore you for the whole flight and do as little as possible.
It is the poorest airline I have ever flown with and I hopefully have to never use them again.