Questions on Visa, Travel, and Living near Belo Horizonte (Sete Lagoas, MG)
Replies: 15 - Last Post: Dec 14, 2012 9:38 PM Last Post By: marquissmart
Dec 12, 2012 11:57 PM
Questions on Visa, Travel, and Living near Belo Horizonte (Sete Lagoas, MG)Greetings All,
I'm planning to go to Brazil on a tourist visa in about 6 months and would like to reaffirm some things and ask a few questions.
Firstly, I am American and one of my biggest questions regards the visa. I'm aware of the 180 day visa rule, but I've heard mixed reviews about obtaining/extending the visa for a further 90 day period if I go to a nearby country. Not going to go into detail with that because I'm sure you've all heard it before. I just want to know if I can do it..Please and thank you.
Secondly, to go to Brazil, Americans need to have a return flight, but if I stay longer than my flight (if I get a 90 day extension) will I be able to receive a refund for that return flight to the U.S.?
Thirdly, I have a certification to teach ESL so I'm going earn money this way. I want to go to a city about an hour away from Belo Horizonte called Sete Lagoas. Are there any trains or buses from BH's airport that would allow me to make that trip easily?
Finally, by the time I leave America for Brazil, I'm estimated to have about $5,000 (R$ 10.000) and I'd like a 1 bedroom apartment or a studio that is fully furnished and is near the center of the city (this is where the ESL job is located). Does anyone know how I could go about searching for a legitimate place like this?
Thank you for your responses in advance. They will be greatly appreciated.
Dec 13, 2012 7:30 AM
1" have a certification to teach ESL so I'm going earn money this way."
You can't work or volunteer legally on a tourist visa in Brazil. I would be wary about announcing publically that you are intending to break the laws of Brazil. And the competition of whoever was foolish enough to make you such an offer might be quite happy to turn you and them in to the authorities. Good luck.
"a city about an hour away from Belo Horizonte called Sete Lagoas. Are there any trains or buses from BH's airport that would allow me to make that trip easily?"
There is a bus from the bus station downtown. It is unusual in Brazil for long distance buses to originate at, or even pass by, airports.
" I'd like a 1 bedroom apartment or a studio that is fully furnished and is near the center of the city (this is where the ESL job is located). Does anyone know how I could go about searching for a legitimate place like this?"
Sete Lagoas is off the beaten tourist path. (Actually I'm not sure I could stand such a backwater for more than the couple of hours it takes to see the grutas.) So there will not be the furnished, short term (less than the usual 30 month lease) apartments geared to tourists found in some of the larger cities. In those, aluguetemporada is a reasonable source.Most university students and working young people stay in the family home until they marry, so that type of shared accomodation found so commonly inthe U.S. also is usually nor found. In Sete Lagoas, perhaps once you get oriented, someone might be tolerant enough of the weird gringo to rent a room in their home. Or insist the school help you find something.
Dec 13, 2012 11:09 AM
2Someone has agreed to hire you knowing you will have just a tourist visa? Why won't they help you get a work visa? You both could get into big legal trouble. A year or two ago, there was circulated here a news story about two Europeans who were put in jail in northern Brazil for being volunteers on an environmental or archaeological project and having just tourist visas. What if your employer (whom we might assume doesn't have the strongest of ethics) lowers your pay or refuses to pay you at all at some point? Would you go to the police? You would hve broken the law, too.
You have an ESL, but how's your Portuguese? Sure, you can teach without knowing it, but you'd be at a disadvantage with others, including teachers both in Brazil, who could more easily converse with their students about their problems, questions, etc. All in all, a bad idea, IMHO.
Dec 13, 2012 12:55 PM
3Many rental properties require you to have a "fiador" which is a guarantor who could be taken to court and sued if you skipped out on your rent or damaged the properties. Obviously this person needs to be Brazilian. As stated, rental leases are also very long and there is less tradition of house sharing as Brazilians tend to live at home for many years.
You may be able to find a boarding house offering "vagas para rapazes/moças"(spaces for men/ladies) although I don't think the standard of these places is very high. Alternatively, you could look for an economical hotel that is prepared to rent rooms at a weekly rate.
The ESL school should help you. As stated above, you really are not suppossed to work on a tourist visa however many do (although not usually in semi-rural Minas Gerais). I don't think not speaking Portuguese will be that much of a disadvantage in the classroom as most schools give the higher level classes to the gringos.
Dec 13, 2012 2:09 PM
Dec 13, 2012 2:11 PM
Dec 13, 2012 2:15 PM
Dec 13, 2012 2:18 PM
Dec 13, 2012 4:03 PM
8Thanks again. And yes, I'm already well aware of the start of school for English. My ESL school that I received my certification from help me with that, but there's always new things to be learned. I've been planning this trip for over a year now and have been learning about Brazil for even longer, so I've done a lot of research. Just wanted to gain some more knowledge before making the leap. Thanks for you help.
Dec 13, 2012 4:07 PM
9@sibley, Thank you for the info. Do you know if the Confins airport only flies locally within Brazil or internationally? I think I saw something about Minas Gerais having it's own in-state airline, where flights go to its various cities. Are you talking about the same airline/airport?
Dec 13, 2012 7:41 PM
Dec 13, 2012 8:17 PM
Dec 13, 2012 8:26 PM
12American (Airlines, that is, although coincidently they are based in the USofA) has flights into B.H. from Miami iirc.
Confins (CNF) is the international airport for B.H., also with some domestic flights. Pampulha is a domestic in-city airport in B.H.
Dec 14, 2012 4:32 AM
13There are two airports in BH as Amobr said. From Pampulha airport you fly to many smaller cities in Minas Gerais state and other states, too. Most probably, you are going to land in Confins airport, that is located 60 km north of BH and close to Sete Lagoas. Don't know about buses from this airport to Sete Lagoas, that's why I think it's better to take a taxi. But don't do the same mistake I did. Don't take the “special” taxi (very expensive); take a metered one. It would be nice if your friend could wait for you at the airport.
Dec 14, 2012 5:38 AM
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