1. Use HSBC atm machines. You can find an HSBC machine almost anywhere you visit. Unlike other machines, all HSBC machines have an English-language option. Stick your card in the machine, pull it back out, and then, to withdraw money using your bank account press the VISA/PLUS option.
2. When going downtown (Centro), take the metro train there (3.10R, though it is set to rise soon), but take the bus back. Just go to Carioca Station (Rua Rio Branco side) and take a bus that says Copacabana or Ipanema (the only places you newbies should be staying) for R2.5. I tell you to take the bus back because it allows you to see some beautiful scenery. Sugar Loaf Mt., for example, is on the way home.
3. Do not allow any women to sit down at your table in Copacabana. Well, you can if you are willing to pay whatever tab she has accumulated!
4. Rent an apartment, rather than stay in a hotel. Hotel rooms are VERY expensive. Apartments can be had for a fraction of the costs, plus no taxes. I will be posting some of the best apartments for the money in a separate post.
5. Relax and enjoy the stay. Try not to be too loud and just fit in. The best way to see Rio is to get out and about. Now, I do think you newbies need to be VERY careful here. But stick with us at the Travel Center and we will keep you safe.