As of May 12, diplomats at Brazilian embassies and consulates around the world are on strike. Embassy workers and consulate staff are evidently striking to demand better salaries and the payment of housing allowances that are past due. This is according to the union representing Foreign Ministry employees. Unfortunately, information about the strike is hard to come by online, but it does seem clear that the strike will continue to affect visa application processing times if it goes on much longer.
A San Antonio local newspaper, La Prensa, reports that Brazilian embassy employees are on strike in the Americas, Africa, Asia, and Europe. In addition to better pay, the strikers are demanding official passports for all Brazilian ministry personnel who are posted abroad. Currently, only accredited diplomats are given official passports, according to the union.
Though the strike remains open ended, 30% of consulate employees remain on the job. This is to stay in compliance with a Brazilian law regulating public sector strikes. According to La Prensa, the Brazilian diplomatic corps is among the most highly regarded in the world. At the time of writing, negotiations are ongoing between the strikers and the Brazilian Foreign Ministry. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a speedy and beneficial resolution for the embassy employees.
So far, the strike has not significantly affected processing times for US citizens trying to travel to Brazil on business or tourist visas. For the latest Brazil visa time tables, check this page. We will keep it up-to-date with the current processing times for all Brazil consulates in the United States.
It is uncertain how long this strike will last or how backed up the Brazil visa process might get. If you have a trip to Brazil coming up, make sure to get in your visa application as soon as possible to avoid any delays. The normal processing time for Brazil visas is currently between 12 and 15 business days. If you are in the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles Brazil Consulate, your wait time could be between 15 and 20 business days.
If you need your Brazil visa faster than that, please give contact Swift right away and we will do everything we can to help you get where you need to go. In certain situations, we may not be able to expedite your Brazil visa application. Again, be sure to get your application in as soon as possible to avoid disrupting your travel plans.
Rob Lee is co-founder of Swift Passport and Visa Services. Originally from Michigan, Rob is an avid fisherman and SCUBA diver who enjoys adventure travel.