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Culture Corner

Getting Around Florianópolis

Using the bus system is the most efficient way to travel around Florianópolis. There are dozens of lines running between 9 terminals as well as special air-conditioned buses that go directly from the city center to the beaches. Taxis are also a common way to get around and are relatively economical. Be aware that heavy traffic is infamous in Florianópolis especially on the weekends and during the summer months. Many residents have begun biking around the island to get fresh air, avoid the traffic and enjoy the sites. Walking is very common around the city center but not as popular for getting across the island.

Students can expect to use the bus system on a daily basis, and sometimes, several times a day. Commutes around 25-35 minutes and sometimes more are commonplace and expected--it is simply a part of everyday life in Floripa!

Transportation Passes

The city is divided into 7 regions. A single ticket through one region costs R$2,20, and if passing through a second region the fare must be paid again. A Fast Pass or Passe-Rápido allows you to go through as many regions as possible in 30 minutes for the price of one ticket. The first trip on the pass is free and can be obtained at the Setuf stand at the Central Bus Station. When getting on the bus, note that payment does not go to the bus driver, but instead the Cobrador sitting several seats behind. If you have a buss pass there will be a machine through which to swipe your card and read your remaining balance.

TYPES OF FAST PASSES

  • Cidadão – For citizens
  • Estudante – For students with a valid ID
  • Especiais – For city employees
  • Turista – For tourists: rechargeable in more than just the Central Station
  • Vale Transporte – For businesses

Types of Transportation

Ônibus (Bus)
The bus service is usually available from 6 am to 12 midnight. Floripa has 9 bus terminals, or Terminais de Integração, which operate the bus lines within the city. There are several lines that either leave direct to the city center or make frequent stops between neighborhoods, called Direta, Semi-Direta, Paradora, and Alimentadora. Despite the heavy traffic in Floripa, the buses are known to be comfortable and reliable with great service. Click here to view more information on bus lines and to view a map of the terminals.

Taxi
Taxis, easily recognizable by their white and red colors with checkered stripes, are relatively cheap in Florianópolis. Depending on the number of passengers in the car and the destination, taking a taxi can be a better option than the bus. The fare includes an initial price and an additional value charged according to the distance covered and time elapsed which is viewable on the taximeter. Meters should be turned on when you enter the car, although some drivers conveniently forget. The site Tarifa de Taxi allows you to calculate an approximate cost for your taxi ride in Floripa.

You are not required to tip taxi drivers. Although it will be more expensive, it is recommended that you use a Rádio taxi (a taxi that you call ahead for) rather than flagging down a Comum taxi on the street. Most city taxi drivers are friendly and trustworthy, but beware of the "independent" drivers who may offer you a ride. While they may have a working "taxi" light on the top of their car and a meter in their car, it is typically safer to go with the clearly marked city taxis just to make sure.