Sao Paulo airport needs work

Trip Start Dec 05, 2013
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Trip End Jan 02, 2014


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What I did
GRU Airport

Flag of Brazil  , São Paulo,
Friday, December 6, 2013

After an 8 hour flight from Miami, we arrived at Sao Paulo GRU International Airport at 5:30 am.This international airport needs major work. Almost no one speaks English and the signage is horrible. Unloading baggage took over 1 hour and many passengers missed connecting flights. We were told that this is not unusual. Fortunately our flight to Iguassu had been rescheduled from 7 am (which would have given us no time) to 10am. We were fortunate to have both our bags arrive safely as two of the people from our group were sent to the TAM office where they learned that their suitcases were still in Miami! 
Domestic flights are completely disorganized in terms of gates. After asking directions by many non-English speaking airport staff, Joel and I finally proceeded to gate 1A. The picture shows the chaos as people tried to squeeze into the departure area. Virtually no place to sit and no signs announcing when to board. By 9:30 we realized that no one from our group was in the room so we starting asking everyone with an official looking uniform if we were in the right place. "Yes" they all replied. However, an Asian man who overhead our questions, came over and said in fact we were at the wrong gate- it had been changed to 3B. He said he'd missed the flight to Iguassu the night before because no one told him that his gate had changed. We followed him to gate 3B where we all learned that the gate was now 5B! With minutes to spare, we just made it on board! What a start to our South America holiday.
   
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