Sitting Room

Saturday, December 26

The Único Rechargeable Bus Card for Tourists: feel like the locals

Image from Agência Comtato
Attention all Free Independent Travelers (FIT) and whomever likes to use local transportation and see the city like the locals. More and more cities in Brazil are addhering to the system of Bus, Subway and Metropolitan Train Card Ticketing that will promote a money-free environment in buses. In some cities it is beginning to be difficult to pay cash for your urban bus ticket. The card shown in the picture above is the Foz do Iguaçu Único Card for Tourists. There are five other types of cards: for worker transportation paid in advance by employers, cards for senior citizens, Citizen Card that can be bought by residents, students and those exempt due to sickness. 
A bus ride in Foz do Iguaçu costs R$ 3.20. It seems that the .20 has been put there to make change difficult. So what you can do is get your card as soon as get to the city. The address is Rua Men de Sá, 449, the street is to the right of the Urban Bus Terminal (TTU) if you are on Avenida JK (Juscelino Kubitschek). It is quick and you can leave the office  with your card in no time at all. The physical card will cost R$ 5. That is the price of the raw material. But then you have to charge it. 
You can calculate how many rides you intend to take say to the National Park and back; to Itaipu and back and so on and charge that amount to the card. When you get to the ticketing central, just say: "Quero um Cartão Único Turista" which means I want a Único Tourists Card. Once you have the card and need to put extra money in it you will need to "Carregar" (Charge) or "recarregar" which is "recharge or reload. You will hear people say "Recarga".  When the time comes for you to leave the Iguassu Falls area, the card is yours to be taken as a souvenir. In many other cities the card is swallowed up by the "machine" as soon as it has no credit. The Foz do Iguaçu version can be recharged forever which is more environmentally sound.          

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Land of Many Waters

Land of Many Waters
This is a secret little waterfalls where I often go and take a very few people for my ecopsychological nature-connecting experience