I will be arriving in Porto Alegre, Brazil this Saturday for a big 6 month adventure.

I have to get from the airport to my Couchsurfing in Bela Vista, at around 3pm.

I don't speak Portuguese (I can understant/say a few words but that's all) and I will have a big suitcase. My couchsurfing host advised to take an Uber because it's cheaper but I won't have an internet connection or a phone number at my arrival in Brazil, so I'm not sure wether it would be so easy to book an Uber.

My main concerns are :

  • Safety
  • Convenience
  • Price comes last, I was expecting to spend a bit when arriving anyway so I saved some money for any alternative.

Which would be the best option in regards to these criteria : taxi (red, white?), Uber, Bus?

  • If you do not speak portuguese very well, I suggest to use an app to ask. Does not matter what app you will use (uber, 99 taxi or Cabify). You will not find a bunch of cab drivers that speak english or other language, – Marcel P. Sep 14 '17 at 16:34

Safety wise, I would use anything except the bus, Porto Alegre is quite infamous for its crime rate and you'll have all your stuff with you.

So your choice is pretty much taxi, Uber, Cabify or 99 - Taxi and private drivers, another application very common in Brasil.

Things for you to consider:

  • normally Uber and 99 have the same price, but in times of high demand (rain, 7-8 AM) Uber becomes 2-4 times more expensive, 99 has always same pricing

  • in 99 you can order 99POP (= same thing as Uber) or 99Taxi (= a "real" taxi will come for you which has some upsides like he can take taxi-only lanes, the price is cheaper than if you would enter a taxi)

  • all of them are safe, but in taxi it's better to confirm the estimated price when entering, you can ask "Quanto mais ou menos vai custar um curso para Bela Vista?"

  • red taxis are "normal" taxis, white are official airport taxis

Uber on this route will be R$14-R$19, 99 the same, red taxi R$20-R$24, white taxi R$29-R$36 (Taxi price estimator), R$1 = 0.32 USD.

There's Wi-Fi available there so you should be able to have a choice.

If I were you, I would try to order Uber/99/Cabify on-line, and if you can't manage it, a classic taxi should be a good choice too.

  • 1
    Thank you for this answer! When you say "try to order a car online", do you mean like rent a car, or take a Uber/99/Cabify? I don't have a driver's license (considering the rest of your answer, I assume you're talking about Uber/99 though) – Florent Sep 14 '17 at 14:12
  • Ah I meant Uber/99/Cabify :) Enjoy Brazil! – Kuba Sep 14 '17 at 14:36

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