Don’t travel to Brazil, you might never get out

The former Foreign Affairs Minister Ernesto Araújo once said that “it doesn’t matter if Brazil becomes an international pariah.” Indeed, it seems to matter very much. As the country descended into complete coronavirus chaos, Ernesto Araújo was fired and Brazil’s crisis became a global health concern. 

As of today, almost all South American countries have imposed some kind of travel restrictions on people arriving from Brazil. 

And this could have been avoided months ago, when President Jair Bolsonaro belittled the importance of Covid-19 vaccines and insisted on calling the disease a “little flu.” Brazil is now more isolated than ever, as the total death toll creeps closer to 400,000. 

For Brazilian residents to leave the country without facing severe coronavirus restrictions, there are only seven possible destinations in the entire world, according to Skyscanner: Costa Rica, Nauru, Tonga, Afghanistan, the Central African Republic, North Macedonia, and Albania.

Only residents of South Africa — home to their own coronavirus variant — face more restrictions than Brazilians.

And with Brazil’s sluggish immunization campaign, the opportunity for so-called “vaccine tourism” is only available to the wealthy, who are able to pay for the out-of-pocket mandatory quarantines dozens of countries have imposed on visitors from Brazil. 

Indeed, Brazil itself is still largely open for tourism. But who would want to visit? The 79,000 new Covid-19 cases recorded on Wednesday alone takes the shine off the country’s stunning natural beauty. Not to mention the travel restrictions tourists would face on return. If you come to Brazil now, you might never make it out.

Read more