Hi, my name is Eva, welcome to my travel blog.
I travel since I was a kid but seriously started to discover other continents and more countries in 2006, first in Europe, then in Central America and Africa.
Currently I live in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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How to extend tourist visa in Brazil

22 May 2019

Brazil is fantastic country for holiday and longer stay... and it is huge. It covers almost the area of Europe and it is bigger than Australia. Enough to say it's the fifth biggest country in the world, with the size of a continent rather. Just a bigger city alone can take you long to discover so when will you get enough time to visit other states? Or maybe you soaked so much in the local atmosphere (like I did) that you do not want to go back home. No matter the reason you may find yourself in the situation that 90 days is simply not enough to explore. Why 90 days?

That's because most tourist visa whether you pay for it or not is valid for 90 days only. Beyond this time you are required to leave the country and may enter it again for another 90 days or you need to extend your tourist stay. Usually the most you can stay within 12 months period is 180 days of which you can stay consecutive 90 days only.

The information presented here is accurate in the time of writing. I extended my visa two weeks before publishing it so this is a fresh experience.
The article talks about the tourist visa/ stay, other types of visa (work, volunteer, school, family) may be subject to different procedure and requirements.

Please note that this is not the same for every country - you need to check your government information or ask in Brazilian consulate how long you can legally stay in here and whether you are required to apply for a visa or you can enter on visa-free basis. Brazil has a reciprocal tourist policy so if Brazlians are required to apply for a visa to enter the USA then American citizens are required to do the same to enter Brazil. If you are lucky holder of EU passport then you can enter Brazil on visa-free basis.

I could enter Brazil just with the passport and for 90 consecutive days. After that time I had to leave or apply for an extension if I wanted to stay another 90 days. If you chose the latter like I did here are some information and tips about the procedure.

When to apply for tourist visa extension?

You can apply whenever you want within 90 days but it is recommended to do so no later than 1-2 weeks before your visa expiry. You must already be legally in the country and you must do it there.

What documents do I need to extend tourist visa?

You obviously need your passport and evidence you legally entered Brazil - a stamp in the passport will suffice. I was worried they'll ask me about the landing card that you normally get at immigration when arriving by plane. I did get it but because no one cared to look at/ stamp it I just throw it away so I didn't have it at all. Nobody asked me about it at the end during the extension process.

The second most important thing is that you prove you can support yourself while in Brazil, have means to live for example a regular income or enough money on your bank account. I showed proof of my monthly income.

Also you need to present the evidence that after 90 days you will leave the country and not overstay. A flight or coach ticket to another country will suffice. I simply bought a couch ticket to Paraguay leaving 3 months after planned extension end because it was the cheapest I could buy. As I wasn't planning to go to Paraguay neither to stay as long as full 3 months of extension anyway - I also needed something I could return without a problem and get the refund - it wouldn't be possible with a cheap flight ticket (not without a penalty at least).

List of required and recommended documents you can present can be found here (under the title "Documentos necessários"). The information is in Portuguse, just paste it into a translator and it should be fairly straightward to understand.

They also asked me for a proof of accommodation but I said I will extend the one I'm staying in if I get the extension and I got away with just this statement and without any proof of reservation document.

Apart of the above you must present a filled visa extension application form and pay the tax.

Application form and payment

Download the application form from here, print it, fill it in, and remember to sign! I forgot to sign and in result waited twice longer :(

You also need to pay the extension fee. This is where you can encouter a bit of hassle. I did at least.

First go to this page and fill in the payment form. Short guide to less obvious fields you need to complete in the form:

  • CEP - postal code
  • Unidade Arrecadadora - point of arrival to Brazil. Basically the location where you arrived to Brazil - in my case it was Sao Paulo airport.
  • Codigo Receita STN - ypou need to select the code of the service that you are paying for. In the case of visa extension it is "140090 - PEDIDO DE PRORROGACAO DO PRAZO DE ESTADA"

Interesting that when I looked to select my citizenship country in "País de Nacionalidade" field I found there is an option to select "UNIAO SOVIETICA" (sic!). It looks like some Brazilians officers are a bit out of date of current politics and have no idea the Soviet Union ceased to exist almost 30 years ago...

Brazilian Visa Extension Uniao Sovietica

The form will tell you how much you need to pay. Currently it was R$110.44. Next print the completed form and go with it to Banco do Brasil branch. The bank accepts only its own debit card payments so in result you must pay by cash because as a foreigner you can't even open an account in Brazil so you won't have their card anyway. Take the receipt - you can't extend your visa without it.

I lost a bit of time to find an opened branch (they opened at 10am), then find a cash machine that accepted my card (see my article about issues using cards in Brazil).

Where to apply for Brazil visa extension?

You apply directly in Policia Federal (Federal Police) office closest to your place of residence in Brazil. You can lookup your nearest point here. There you will find a location of foreign department that deals with extensions and its working hours.

With all the documents I went to the Policia Federal in Rio de Janeiro's city airport, found the Setor de Estrangeiros (2nd floor of the terminal) and queued to hand my papers. A lady in the window checked all documents are there and asked me to sit in the waiting room.

There was around 20-25 people there already. I waited one hour when an officer came and asked me to sign the documents. Then I waited 1.5h more. I finally got the documents back and my passport with a big stamp saying: PRORROGADO ESTADA DE VISTATANTE ATE [..here comes the date..] and that was it!

Easy ;)

Things to note

* In Rio de Janeiro Policia Federal office for visa extension is no longer located at Galeao airport. The good news is that it moved to Santos Dumont airport (so more centrally located) in November 2018.

* In Rio de Janeiro some officers spoke English but if you know Portuguese or have a friend that can go with you and translate it will obviously help.