Brazil is a federative nation state with an advanced developing economy.  Facilities for tourism are excellent in the major cities, but vary in quality in remote areas

A passport and visa are required for U.S. citizens traveling to Brazil for any purpose.  Brazilian visas must be obtained in advance from the Brazilian Embassy or consulate nearest to the traveler's place of residence.  There are no "airport visas" and immigration authorities will refuse entry to Brazil to anyone not possessing a valid visa.  All Brazilian visas, regardless of the length of validity, must initially be used within 90 days of the issuance date or will no longer be valid.   U.S. citizens reentering Brazil must be able to show an entry stamp in their passport proving that the visa was issued within 90 days; otherwise they will not be allowed reentry.   Immigration authorities will not allow entry into Brazil without a valid visa.  The U.S. Government cannot assist travelers who arrive in Brazil without proper documentation. 

Travelers under 18 years of age and their parents should carefully review the visa application requirements for the consular post at which they are applying.  The adjudicating official may require a birth certificate and notarized travel authorization.

Travelers are reminded that they are subject to local law.  Showing contempt to a Brazilian government official at the port of entry, or elsewhere, is a serious offense.  Fines for such offenses are based on the offender’s claimed income. 

Additionally, travelers who have recently visited certain countries, including most other Latin American countries (check Brazilian Embassy website linked below), may be required to present an inoculation card indicating they had a yellow fever inoculation or they may not be allowed to board the plane or enter the country. 

Visit the web site of the Brazilian Embassy in Washington, D.C. for the most current visa information.

For current entry and customs requirements for Brazil, travelers may contact the Brazilian Consulate at 1030 15th St., NW, Washington, DC  20005; telephone 1-202-461-3000.  Travelers may also contact the Brazilian consulates in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, or San Francisco.  Addresses, phone numbers, web and e-mail addresses, and jurisdictions of these consulates may be found at the Brazilian Embassy website.

U.S. citizens and other foreign travelers must fill out a small immigration form on arrival that will be stamped and handed back by immigration officials at the airport.  It is important to retain this form in order to hand it in to immigration officials upon exit from the country.  According to the Brazilian Embassy’s website, visitors who lose this form will have to get clearance from the Brazilian Federal Police to leave the country and may have to pay a fine.

U.S. citizens also possessing Brazilian nationality cannot be issued Brazilian visas and must obtain a Brazilian passport (from the Brazilian Embassy or Consulate nearest to their place of residence) to enter and depart Brazil.  Airport officials will check for Brazilian visas upon arrival and departure.  In addition to being subject to all Brazilian laws affecting U.S. citizens, dual nationals may also be subject to other laws that impose special obligations on Brazilian citizens. 

Brazilian minors age 17 years and under, including minors who have both Brazilian and American citizenship, are subject to strict exit requirements.  Brazilian minors departing Brazil, if not accompanied by both parents, must prove that both parents authorize the departure.  If accompanied by only one parent, the minor must have a notarized letter from the other parent indicating permission to depart the country, a court order proving that the accompanying parent has sole custody, or a Brazilian court order authorizing the child’s departure.  If accompanied by neither parent, the minor must have a notarized letter from the parents authorizing departure or a Brazilian court order authorizing the same.  There are no exceptions, even in cases where one parent expected the child to remain in Brazil only a short time.  The authorization must be notarized by a Brazilian notary to be considered valid by the Brazilian authorities.  If done in the U.S., the authorization must be in Portuguese or accompanied by an official translation into Portuguese, and must be either notarized by the Brazilian Embassy in Washington, DC or one of the Brazilian consulates or notarized by a U.S. notary public and then authenticated at the Brazilian Embassy or one of the Brazilian consulates.  Note that children adopted from Brazil are still considered Brazilian citizens and must be documented as such should they return to Brazil.

Minors age 17 years and under who do not possess Brazilian nationality are not technically subject to the same strict travel requirements as Brazilian minors. However, there have been cases where the travel of non-Brazilian minors has been delayed or not authorized when accompanied by only one parent or a third party.  To avoid potential difficulties, parents of non-Brazilian minors may want to follow the same procedures above if their children will be traveling to Brazil accompanied by only one parent or by a third party.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Brazil.

Economy of Brazil is the world's eighth largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth largest by purchasing power parity. Brazil has moderately free marketsand an inward-oriented economy. In Reais (Brazilian currency), its GDP is estimated at R$ 2.9 trillion reais in 2008. The Brazilian economy has been predicted to become one of the five largest economies in the world in the decades ahead to come, the GDP per capita following and growing.

Brazil is a member of diverse economic organizations, such as Mercosul, SACN, G8+5, G20 and the Cairns Group. Its trade partners number in the hundreds, with 60% of exports mostly of manufactured or semimanufactured goods. Brazil's main trade partners in 2008 were: Mercosul and Latin America (25.9% of trade), EU (23.4%), Asia (18.9%), the United States (14.0%), and others (17.8%).

According to the World Economic Forum, Brazil was the top country in upward evolution of competitiveness in 2009, gaining eight positions among other countries, overcoming Russia for the first time, and partially closing the competitiveness gap with India and China among the BRIC economies. Important steps taken since the 1990s toward fiscal sustainability, as well as measures taken to liberalize and open the economy, have significantly boosted the country’s competitiveness fundamentals, providing a better environment for private-sector development.

The owner of a sophisticated technological sector, Brazil develops projects that range from submarines to aircraft and is involved in space research: the country possesses a satellite launching center and was the only country in the Southern Hemisphere to integrate the team responsible for the construction of the International Space Station (ISS). It is also a pioneer in many fields, including ethanol production.

Brazil, together with Mexico, has been at the forefront of the Latin American multinationals phenomenon by which, thanks to superior technology and organization, local companies have successfully turned global. These multinationals have made this transition notably by investing massively abroad, in the region and beyond, and thus realizing an increasing portion of their revenues internationally.

Brazil is also a pioneer in the fields of deep water oil research from where 73% of its reserves are extracted. According to government statistics, Brazil was the first capitalist country to bring together the ten largest car assembly companies inside its national territory.

The climate of Brazil varies considerably from the mostly tropical North (the equator traverses the mouth of the Amazon) to temperate zones below the Tropic of Capricorn (23°27' S latitude), which crosses the country at the latitude of the city of São Paulo. Brazil has six climatic regions: tropical rainforest, tropical wet and dry,tropical monsoon, semiarid, humid subtropical and subtropical highland.

Temperatures along the equator are high, averaging above 25 °C (77 °F), but not reaching the summer extremes of up to 40°C (104°F) in the temperate zones. There is little seasonal variation near the equator, although at times it can get cool enough for wearing a jacket, especially in the rain.

At the country's other extreme, there are frosts south of the Tropic of Capricorn during the winter (June-August), and in some years there are snowfalls on the high plateau and mountainous areas of some regions. Snow falls more frequently in the states of Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, and Paraná and less frequently in the states of São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Minas Gerais, and Espírito Santo. Temperatures in the cities of Belo Horizonte and Brasília are moderate, usually between 15ºC (59°F) and 30°C (86°F), because of their elevation of approximately 1,000 meters (3,281 ft). Rio de Janeiro, Recife, and Salvador on the coast have warm climates, with average temperatures ranging from 23 to 27 °C (73.4 to 80.6 °F), but enjoy constant trade winds. The cities of São Paulo, Curitiba, Florianópolis and Porto Alegre have a subtropical climate similar to that of southern United States and Europe, and temperatures can fall below freezing in winter.

Precipitation levels vary widely. Most of Brazil has moderate rainfall of between 1,000 and 1,500 mm (39.4 and 59.1 in) a year, with most of the rain falling in the summer (between December and April) south of the Equator. The Amazon region is notoriously humid, with rainfall generally more than 2,000 mm (78.7 in) per year and reaching as high as 3,000 mm (118.1 in) in parts of the western Amazon and near Belém. It is less widely known that, despite high annual precipitation, the Amazon rain forest has a three- to five-month dry season, the timing of which varies according to location north or south of the equator.

High and relatively regular levels of precipitation in the Amazon contrast sharply with the dryness of the semiarid Northeast, where rainfall is scarce and there are severe droughts in cycles averaging seven years. The Northeast is the driest part of the country. The region also constitutes the hottest part of Brazil, where during the dry season between May and November, temperatures of more than 38 °C (100.4 °F) have been recorded. However, the sertão, a region of semidesert vegetation used primarily for low-density ranching, turns green when there is rain. Most of the Center-West has 1,500 to 2,000 mm (59.1 to 78.7 in) of rain per year, with a pronounced dry season in the middle of the year, while the South and most of the East is without a distinct dry season.