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My wife is Australian and we recently started a trip to South America without realising she would need a visa to enter Brazil. The process is more complicated than for Europeans so we decided to sort the visa out in La Paz (Bolivia) as it takes only 2 working days (10 is normal in Australia).

When we went to the consulate they said that we needed entry and exit flights to Brazil for the visa to be granted. Currently we have exit flights but we're planning to enter Brazil by land near Puerto Suarez (Bolivia) and Corumba (Brazil). This has obviously greatly affected our plans due to increased costs, flight destinations and activities we can complete.

My question:

Do Australians have to have entry and exit flights for a tourist visa (we will be in Brazil for maximum two weeks)?

We have looked into other entry points (Iguazu falls Argentina) which visas can be granted in a matter of hours at an overland border and are confused as to why the visa requirements are different (I presume we wouldn't have to enter Brazil immediately if we got this). This isn't a viable alternative for us. The same applies to getting the visa in Buenos Aires (I don't know if the requirements would be the same as in La Paz).

It is difficult to know if the grumpy visa attendant we got was telling us all the options or whether we should investigate further at the Australian Embassy to enable us to travel our desired route.

We have done significant research on This subject but none of the blog posts mentioning getting Australian visas in South America deal with our particular dilemma so any advice would be appreciated.

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I met a lot of people here in Brazil coming from various countries by bus and they had no issues with getting tourist visas.

And, more specifically, according to Consulate-General of Brazil in Sydney website's checklist, you need:

Itinerary showing arrival and departure from Brazil;

And there is nothing mentioned about any flights neither in the checklist nor on the VITUR (tourist visa) main website, so your wife should be good to go! (I'm using the word should as the Policia Federal, the institution responsible for border protection, likes to change the requirements randomly, but formally you don't need a flight in.).

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