Press release

Plan your tactics before booking World Cup travel

FCO and FSF urge football fans to ‘be on the ball’ when planning trips to Brazil

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

World Cup 2014
FCO Minister Mark Simmonds (L) and Kevin Miles, FSF Chairman (R) urge Brits to be on the ball

Ahead of the World Cup draw on Friday the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and the Football Supporters Federation (FSF) are teaming up to urge England fans to do their homework before booking travel to Brazil.

Brazil is a big country – roughly seven times larger than South Africa. Tourist numbers have been steadily increasing. Over 150,000 British Nationals visited Brazil in 2012 and the vast majority of visits were trouble free.

Friday’s draw could see England fans having to travel distances up to 3,000km to get between group games. Travelling these distances can take up to four hours by air.

Mark Simmonds, the Minister for Consular Affairs, said:

Like me, England fans are looking forward to Friday’s draw but it is crucial that they do their research before they arrange flights to Brazil and, importantly, their onward travel within the country. There are some distinct challenges, notably the vast distances between venues, so we urge fans to prepare for these – remember to check the travel advice and FCO website before you book your flights.

Many travelling fans will have attended international tournaments before but this tournament poses new challenges. We encourage all fans to plan thoroughly to ensure a safe and successful trip in Brazil. You wouldn’t expect Roy Hodgson and the team to be unprepared for the World Cup, so you shouldn’t be either.

Kevin Miles, Chief Executive of the Football Supporters Federation, said:

It’s really important that fans think carefully before they travel and know what to expect in Brazil. Every tournament is different and the travel distances to get between games will make an Exeter to Hartlepool away day look like a doddle.

In addition to long travel distances between games the FCO is highlighting the following travel advice for those thinking of heading to Brazil:

  • your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Brazil

  • be aware that there are additional requirements for all children under 18 entering or transiting Brazil without their parents or legal guardian, or travelling with one parent only

  • ensure that you obtain travel insurance and that it covers you for all activities that you may want to carry out while in Brazil

  • there were significant protests during last year’s Confederations Cup; fans travelling to the World Cup should avoid all protests and demonstrations and should monitor local media and follow the guidance of local authorities

  • be aware that Brazil has a high road accident rate and crime levels are also high, especially in major cities

For more detailed information, and to stay up to date with the FCO’s latest travel advice for Brazil, England fans can visit our World Cup 2014 page.

If you have any enquiries for FCO consular staff before you go or while abroad you can now ask questions via the FCO’s new Twitter service @FCOtravel. This service adds to the ways that British people travelling or living overseas can already get in touch with the FCO: by emailing the travel advice team or contacting local consular staff.

You can also keep up-to-date with the latest FCO travel advice by signing up to the FCO’s Facebook and Twitter feeds, using #beontheball.

Further information

For further information please email the Know Before You Go team or call 020 7478 7840.

The FCO’s Know Before You Go campaign encourages British nationals to prepare for their foreign travel so they can avoid preventable problems. See our full holiday checklist.

The Know Before You Go campaign targets a number of audiences, from gap year students to package holidaymakers; sports fans to older travellers and people visiting friends and family abroad. The campaign works with around 600 travel industry partners to communicate its messages. For more information visit our Know Before You Go page.

The Football Supporters’ Federation is the national organisation representing more than 500,000 fans in England and Wales. The FSF is democratically structured and campaigns across a range of issues such as ticket prices and safe standing.

Published 5 December 2013