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The 2016 Olympic Games (Rio 2016) will kick-start in the city of Rio de Janeiro later this week. If you are lucky enough to be visiting during the Games, Brazil can be overwhelming if you don’t know what to expect. Here are some helpful tips for your trip:

Rio 2016: fast facts

206 country members of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) are expected to attend 
42 Olympic sports categories with 306 events will take place in 19 days
32 venues in Rio are hosting events, along with the cities of Belo Horizonte, Brasília, Manaus, Salvador and São Paulo, co-hosting the highly anticipated soccer events
According to Brazil’s tourism agency, Embratur, 380,000 tourists are expected to visit Brazil for the Games 

No visas required

According to the U.S. State Department, tourists attending the Olympics from the United States, Canada, Japan and Australia are exempt from visa requirements between June 1 and September 18
Individuals from these countries are still required to have a valid passport and completed entry card for entry into Brazil
Tourists may stay up to 90 days from the date they enter the country during the Games

No international driving license required

Brazil’s National Traffic Council, Contran, published a new rule allowing tourists from 102 countries to drive vehicles in Brazil during the Olympics
Tourists are legally allowed to drive in the country from July 1 until December 31, 2016
Foreign drivers must carry a valid driver's license from their country of origin along with their passport and must follow the traffic laws of Brazil

Cash rules to avoid ATM machines

Brazil’s official unit of currency is the Real (R$) – pronounced Ray-all
Daily withdrawal limit from most ATMs is around R$1,000 or less
ATMs are closed from 10p.m. until 6 a.m. across the country with few exceptions in certain locations
International credit cards are accepted at some ATMs. Do not insert your card if the ATM does not have your credit card symbol or your card may be confiscated by the machine

Health concerns

A growing issue tourists should be aware of is the spread of the Zika virus. The virus is primarily transmitted by mosquitoes, but sexual transmission is also possible. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) encourages travelers to protect themselves from mosquito bites and practice safe sex to decrease the risk of contracting the virus.
 
Make sure your vaccines are up to date when traveling abroad. The CDC recommends having the following vaccines before visiting Brazil: 
 
Hepatitis A
Hepatitis B
Typhoid
Polio
Rabies
Measles
Meningitis

 

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