Looking for a change of pace? How about a temporary or long-term career change? With its international economy and diversity Rio de Janeiro is an ideal city to find work (and perhaps even set down roots!). This “Cidade Maravilhosa” (Marvelous City) awaits those who are adventurous enough to jump in and find that job they have always dreamed of—jobs in Rio de Janeiro.
What you need to know about working in Rio de Janeiro
With a $200 billion economy, it’s not surprising that getting a job in Rio de Janeiro is on your list. Rio is home to an array of international corporations, such as Petrobras, a Brazilian national oil company. Rio’s economy also leads in the manufacturing, industrial, and financial sectors. With the second largest stock market in Brazil, Rio’s financial sector is seen as globally important.
Popular jobs in Rio de Janeiro. For those with a TEFL certificate, Rio can also be an excellent place find teaching English jobs while developing Portuguese speaking skills. If you already happen to have experience in the industrial, manufacturing, or financial sector, you’re in luck! Rio’s industrial and manufacturing sector is thriving, with the Greater Rio de Janeiro area the second largest in Brazil, topped only by Sao Paulo. Banking and other financial services are also in demand.
Short term and summer jobs vs. long term jobs in Rio. Long term jobs in Rio will require a Visa or sponsorship from the employer. Make sure to get all of the necessary information from a potential employer before accepting any long-term position. Teaching in Rio can be both a long or short term experience, but will also require a Visa. Most schools prefer at least a one year commitment. During the summer, internship experiences are more common. Try searching on job boards or contacting your college's International Education office to find the opportunity that is right for you!
Unpaid vs. paid jobs in Rio de Janeiro. Jobs within the finance, trade, or manufacturing sector will most likely be paid and long term, while teaching or internship positions can include a stipend, housing, and airfare reimbursement. Common employment benefits offered by Brazilian companies include health care, Programa de Participação nos Lucros e Resultados, (otherwise known as profit sharing), child care benefits, and tuition reimbursement. You might also see Cesta Básica de Alimentos in an employment contract. It refers to money, usually provided on a credit card, that can only be used for groceries. I mean, come on, who wouldn’t like more food money?
Life in Rio de Janeiro for Expats
Just as any large city would, Rio offers endless opportunities to get lost in the ambiguity. Perhaps you have always wanted to learn the samba or taste the best churrascaria (brazilian steakhouse). Of course there are the sites every tourist must see such as the Christ the Redeemer statue and Sugarloaf Mountain, but it is often the day to day atmosphere of the city that expats come to treasure. With historic churches, world class museums, famous beaches, and delicious street food, there is always something to do in while working abroad in Rio.
Rio is also known for its celebrations, and Carnaval is not to be missed. Considered the largest carnival in the world, this annual festival is held every year before lent and dates back to the 1700’s. Imagine: 2 million people filling the street with colorful and exotic costumes, parades, music, and dancing. Welcome to Carnaval. If you are an expat in Rio, expect to participate in the fun!
GoAbroad’s Inside Scoop for Expats in Rio de Janeiro
Before getting settled, it’s important to be aware of Rio de Janeiro’s cost of living. Considered one of the most expensive cities in Brazil, Rio has seen inflated prices in recent years. One bedroom apartments near the city center will cost at least $800 per month. Of course, the farther away you live from the city center, the cheaper the apartment will be. Imported goods will be more expensive, so if you really need that favorite candy bar, remember to pack a few!
Although most companies will use English as the language of business, unless you are fluent in Portuguese, there will likely be a language barrier. Many natives, especially the younger ones, will have a basic grasp on English. However, it can never hurt to pick up some phrases or take a class or two. Your coworkers will appreciate the effort you put into learning their native language.
Expat jobs in Rio de Janeiro can be an adventure, but remember to be cautious. Often benefits and pay may not be the same as what you are used to from your home country. However, if you go into it with eyes-wide-open, working abroad in Rio can be an experience of a lifetime.
Want to learn more about expat jobs in Rio de Janeiro? Samba your way over and read our comprehensive guide on working abroad in Brazil.