Airport: Rio's international airport is served by 28 international carriers as well as the three major Brazilian airlines and between them they offer direct flights to-and-from more than 80 international cities and most of the major Brazilian centers of population.
Climate: Rio de Janeiro is a tropical city. Summer runs from December through March with temperatures ranging from 25º C (77º F) to 42º C (108º F) while winter runs from June through August when temperatures can drop to around 20º C (68º F) in the day and a cool 16º C (60º F) at night.
Clothing: Appropriately enough for a city where the beach and warm weather play such an important role, casual dress dominates in Rio, although during working hours men will not feel out of place in a suit and tie and women in smart dresses or a suit.
Communications: Rio has an excellent telecommunications system which links Rio to the rest of Brazil and the world. Direct dial and collect calls can be placed from any telephone. Pay phones are located throughout the city and operate with telephone cards. Portable cellular telephones are available to visitors for a small rental charge. The International Direct Dial (IDD) code for Brazil is 55 and the city code for Rio de Janeiro 21.
Electric Current: The electric current in Rio is 110 or 120 volts, 60 cycles, alternating current. Many hotels and large apartment blocks do, however, have some 220 volt outlets.
Foreign Exchange: The Brazilian monetary unit is the Real (R$). The exchange rate available to visitors is published daily in the newspaper along with the commercial dollar rate of the day used in official international business transactions. Cash and traveler checks, especially US Dollars, can be exchanged at most banks or exchange houses as well as the major hotels. All major credit cards are accepted in Brazil and some stores even accept foreign currency.
Rio Tourist Police: One battalion of the Rio de Janeiro State Military Police (BPTUR) is specialized in ostensive patrolling of the city for the protection of the tourist. Properly trained and equipped to attend to cases involving tourists, the men of this corporation have the task of patrolling the popular tourist areas, the beaches and the vicinity of the hotels.
Hotels: At last count the city of Rio de Janeiro had around 250 hotels including those from 1 to 5 stars, motels and apart-hotels; more than 28.000 rooms in total.
Language: The language spoken in Brazil is Portuguese. English is the predominant foreign language taught in schools, and Spanish, if spoken slowly, is understood by a good percentage of the population.
Medical Services: Rio de Janeiro and Brazil have a number of internationally respected hospitals, clinics and doctors, but treatment is expensive so visitors are strongly advised to take out medical trip insurance before traveling to Brazil.
Taxis: Rio has an extensive taxi fleet which includes yellow metered cabs which can be hailed in the streets, as well as a series of special taxis operated by licensed companies which can be found at the airports, hotels or booked by phone. From the international airport and the main shopping centers most of the special taxis work on a fixed fare by area which is paid in advance at the company's counter above which the fare price must be displayed.
Cultural: Rio de Janeiro has more than 200 locations for movies, theater, musical and artistic exhibitions, 82 museums and 76 libraries. Besides traditional museums, the city is home to museums dedicated to trains, to planes, to trolley-cars, to jewelry and gemstones, to sport, to the Indians, to primitive Brazilian art and even to Carmem Miranda, among others.