This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data
Last Published: 8/10/2017

Overview

Brazil is the 7th largest overseas source of visitors to the United States (excluding North America-Canada and Mexico) for 2015, the most recent full year information that is available. According to the National Travel and Tourism Office, Brazil is the top arrivals market from South America and accounts for more than 30 percent of all arrivals in the United States from the continent.
 
In 2014, 2,264 million Brazilian travelers visited the United States, a 10 percent increase over 2013. This number dropped slightly in 2015, when 2,219 million Brazilian visitors visited the U.S. Considering the weak Brazilian economy in 2016, and a major devaluation of the Brazilian currency against the US dollar value, preliminary statistics from January through August 2016 show that 1,109,066 Brazilians visited the United States, representing a 25.7 percent decrease compared to that same period in 2015.
 
Spending by Brazilian visitors to the United States will also show an impact related to Brazil’s economic situation and the significant growth in the U.S. dollar value. In 2013, Brazilians spent $12.6 billion in the U.S. In 2014, expenditures reached a total of $14.019 billion, and continued to rise in 2015 reaching $14.3 billion in expenditures, which represents more than $6,400 by each Brazilian visitor.
 
The table below shows the top 20 countries that sent tourists to the United States in 2015.

 

Top 20 countries - Tourism to US

Rank

Country of Residence

Number of Arrivals

percent Change

1

Canada

20,704,701

-10.0

2

Mexico

18,413,649

7.9

3

United Kingdom

4,900,823

18.1

4

Japan

3,758,297

3.8

5

People’s Republic of China (Excl. HK)

2,591,333

18.3

6

Germany

2,271,820

10.5

7

Brazil

2,218,883

-2.0

8

South Korea

1,764,871

20.9

9

France

1,752,611

5.7

10

Australia

1,450,113

11.2

11

India

1,125,783

17.0

12

Italy

1,039,397

7.9

13

Colombia

853,624

-3.1

14

Argentina

791,905

15.6

15

Spain

752,823

6.4

16

Netherlands

726,011

13.0

17

Venezuela

590,733

-4.1

18

Sweden

586,332

6.2

19

Switzerland

536,584

7.4

20

Ireland

450,132

12.5

TOTAL TOP 20

67,280,425

2.4

 
Leading Sub-Sectors

The U.S. is Brazil’s second most popular destination just behind neighboring Argentina. More Brazilians are traveling to the U.S. because of promotions offered by U.S. companies and new routes to the United States from Brazil offered by U.S. carriers.
 
According to the National Travel and Tourism Office, Brazil ranked 5th in country of origin for overseas visitors to the U.S. during 2014. In 2015, Brazilian currency fluctuations and the economic/political situation in Brazil had a significant impact on outbound travel. Preliminary statistics for January through August of 2016 show an even greater impact on the number of Brazilian visitors to the United States, with 1,109,066 tourists from Brazil, representing a 25.7 percent drop in comparison with the 2015 numbers.
 
Regarding the main purpose of their trip to the U.S., the majority of arrivals from Brazil in 2015 were on vacation/holiday (73 percent), followed by visiting friends/relatives (9 percent), business (8 percent), convention/conference/trade show (5 percent), and education-related purposes (4 percent). Top tourism activities when visiting the U.S. include shopping, which accounted for 89 percent of their preferences; sight-seeing (69 percent); visits to National Parks (34 percent); dining in fine restaurants (22 percent); visiting historical sites (24 percent); and amusement/theme parks (51 percent). Other activities include guided tours (13 percent); Art Gallery/Museums (28 percent); Concert/Play/Musicals (19 percent); visiting small towns (17 percent); cultural heritage sites (10 percent); sports (16 percent); visit to casinos (6 percent); water sports (3 percent); golf and tennis (2.1 percent); ski (1.2 percent); ecotourism (2.1 percent); and fishing (0.8 percent). The most popular destinations for Brazilian visitors in the U.S. are Orlando, Miami, and New York City, followed by Las Vegas and Los Angeles. Washington, DC, New Orleans, Massachusetts, San Francisco and Texas are popular secondary destinations. The mode of travel most popular with Brazilian visitors while in the United States was rented autos (55 percent), followed by private or company auto (32 percent), taxicab/limousine (24 percent), air travel between U.S. cities (23 percent), and city subway/tram/bus (24 percent).
 
The high season for Brazilian travel to the U.S. is December through January, and during the month of July due to school holidays. Shorter trips during public holidays are also very popular. Fly and drive trips are becoming increasingly attractive to Brazilian families wishing to drive through Arizona, California, Nevada, Colorado, Florida, Louisiana or New England.
 
Brazil’s Travel and Tourism Distribution System 

According to Brazil’s Ministry of Tourism, Brazil has 18,872 travel agencies, with 60 percent issuing international tickets. Many travel agencies also serve as tour operators, which started out as travel agencies. As a result, there is stiffer competition prompting many agencies to upgrade technologies to improve efficiency. Associations are important in Brazil’s travel industry. The Brazilian Tour Operators Association (BRAZTOA), formed by 70 operators, is the main association of tour operators. The Brazilian Travel Agencies Association (ABAV) has approximately 3,500 members, and asserts that they are responsible for 85 percent of international air ticket sales. These associations report that a majority of Brazil’s visitors to the U.S. go through a travel agency, while others go directly to airlines to purchase tickets through the Internet, and a smaller group use state/city travel offices. 
 

Opportunities

Travel and tourism promotion in Brazil has seen success over the past two decades. Brazil’s large and diverse population means the country has a diverse set of interests from which U.S. destinations can recruit travelers. For a U.S. destination, finding the hook for potential Brazilian travelers could lead to great returns.
 
Those working in tourism may want to capture some of the increasing niche markets of Brazilian travelers to the United States. Visa adjudicating officers at the US Consulate in São Paulo, the largest visa issuing post in Brazil, have indicated notable trends among Brazilian visitors in 2015. Among Brazilians traveling with the specific aim of shopping, agents should consider tours specifically designed to cater to the soon-to-be mothers and wedding shoppers. Officers also indicated that modest Brazilian shoppers find inexpensive accommodations in the outskirts of major cities and even take advantage of outlet shopping. Another growing market is the adventurous traveler who aspires to trek the famous Route 66 or participate in motorcycle road tours in the South.
 
While Florida remains a popular destination, some are making New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New Orleans or Las Vegas their first destination. Among this group, several have specific intentions to drive along the California coast or drive from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. 

Young professional and business travelers have also shown notable trends. When taking holiday leave, many young professionals opt to use their 30 days of vacation for an extended stay in the United States. The vast majority take a light load of English language courses as incidental to tourism. Hours spent outside of class are dedicated to exploring a major city and getting a taste of American living before returning home. Consular officers specifically highlighted Chicago as a major destination for architects and building lovers. Other trends include industry shoppers traveling specifically to purchase equipment, and hobby or professional travel by photographers, disc jockeys, artists and farmers.

Several Brazilian travelers obtain U.S. visas with the specific purpose of transiting to destinations in Canada, Mexico, Japan, and Caribbean cruises with intentions of doing a quick stay in the U.S. for shopping. Agents may want to capture this market to facilitate the needs of these travelers, who simply want quick and easy access to shopping and dining.
 
Each year, the U.S. Commercial Service in Brazil organizes the VISIT USA shows. This is the most effective and affordable vehicle for the U.S. travel trade industry to increase its market exposure in Brazil. VISIT USA 2017 Brazil took place in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in March 2017, and was visited by over 1,300 select travel agents, tour operators and media visitors in the two cities.
 

Web Resources


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Brazil Travel and Tourism Trade Development and Promotion