Originally Posted by Mr Spooner
It is very fun but you need to be careful. Like most of Cent. and South America you are always need to watch out for danger. Cops will shake you down as easily as a gang member. Be smart, do not wear a watch outdoors, keep money in front pocket, and do not wear sandles you can not run in...wear shoes. Take cabs always at night, even if it is a block away.
Women are nice and easy to meet if you have a pocket full of dead american presidents (get my drift.)
Crime definitely an issue in SP. But cabs aren't a totally safe option either. My neighbor was in SP last week on a business trip and was robbed at gunpoint while in her cab. She had just left the 5 star Hilton Morumbi in a city cab. Just a few blocks away from the hotel while stuck in gridlock at a red light and in broad daylight, two motor scooters pull along side and draw pistols. One on her and one on the driver. They demanded her lap top case and then drove off between cars.
My friend proceeded to her business appointment where her clients, all high ranking Brazilian bankers, had their own version of the same story. She filed a police report and attitude of the local cops was "You were robbed? What, just once? What makes you think you're so special?
I've been to some pretty off the wall third world countries but SP always had me a little edgy. Call the US consulate and maybe check out some internet sites on travel security and see what they say. Think New York in the late 1970's and you have a pretty good picture of SP.
Brazilians are a lot like Americans. Very casual and friendly, like to work hard and then play hard, a generally positive sense of empowerment and destiny. They do like Americans and when you get in with a good group, you'll have a fantastic time.