Firstly I would like to explain to those who do not know that Carnival, despite being a very famous popular party worldwide, is organized by a private company called the Independent League of Rio de Janeiro Samba Schools (LIESA).
LIESA offers five different spaces for revelers to attend Samba Schools:
- Cabins (Camarotes)
- Special Boxes (Boxes Especiais)
- Chairs (Cadeiras)
- and Stands (Arquibancadas)
Cabins (Camarotes) are exclusive and covered spaces with a choice of buffet services that can be used by buyers on every day of the parade.
Special Boxes (Boxes Especiais) are covered and closed spaces only on the sides, with private entrances and ready for use on every day of the parades.
The Frisas are open spaces, subject to sun and rain with closed only on the sides with places for 4 or 6 people to sit while watching the parades.
Chairs (Cadeiras) as its name implies, are only chairs located in sector 12.
The stands (Arquibancadas) are seats in the same stands, where the vast majority of revelers are.
But if everything is so simple, why are carnival tickets so expensive?
Tickets to watch the Carnival parades at the Rio Sambadrome are not expensive, what makes them expensive are the abusive profits of the money changers who include in the ticket price a huge profit margin.
See how the sale of tickets for the parade of samba schools in Rio works
Before the responsible company (LIESA), put the tickets for sale:
Money changers recruit coordinators to get buyers of these tickets and pay for this service.
The coordinators convince poor people to make purchases with their documents and are also paid for it.
Because tickets are limited, money changers prepare everyone on their team (coordinators and buyers) to buy as many cheap tickets as possible.
When LIESA offers tickets for sale, these buyers reserve tickets at their original prices.
Then these buyers sell these reserves to the coordinators. The coordinators pay for the tickets and sell them to the money changers.
And finally the money changers sell to the tourists (who are you).
So when you buy a ticket to the Rio de Janeiro samba school parades, you are paying beyond the original ticket price, the buyers’ commission, the coordinators’ commission and the money changers’ profit.
Below is an image of how the original prices are much cheaper than those sold to you (values in Brazilian Reais “BRL”):
What can you do to buy these much cheaper tickets?
- Get ready in advance for the carnival,
- Visit LIESA’s website regularly to see when Carnival tickets will start selling;
- Make the reservation directly with the responsible company (LIESA).
Formerly LIESA sold these tickets only by phone and this made buying difficult for ordinary customers, recently tickets have also been sold over the internet making it easy for everyone to buy.
LIESA’s website is: http://liesa.globo.com