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If you are headed to Rio and are worried about safety, you may read many articles regarding the topic. And as a result, you may decide to do a lot of tour groups for sightseeing. Based off some research, a lot of the big sites such as viator.com are quite pricy in comparison to how much it really cost to get to those sites yourself! Understand it's much safer to be in a tour group, but thought is it really necessary to have it cost triple the actual price (think sometimes even more on some sights!) ! Some of these tours were literally just dropping you off and picking you up! Here is a comparison of a couple: RDJ4U.COM and RIOMAXIMOTOUR.COM that seem to be priced quite reasonably.
RDJ4U requires a payment upfront through their website. The booking process is easy and smooth. They provide a voucher that you present to the tour guide, and it lists what is included with the price you paid. PROS: booking is easy, and Rio Scenarium is an awesome experience! CONS: they may not provide the free drink advertised, the voucher states that they may be 30min to 1hr late, and its likely they will be. Tour guides are polite, though how they feel about Brazil or Rio Scenarium may be a question. Your guide could leave early so you will be left with the driver for most of the ride back to the hotel (who may not speak English).
RIOMAXIMOTOUR does not require a payment upfront, which os nice. PROS: The Complete City Tour ias GREAT! Tour guides speak English slowly, which helps understand better. You'll get details about the city, its history, and maybe even some jokes! You might get some extras, like a quick stop near a favela from a far ways to take a picture, or a gift shop at the end of the tour. Plataforma Show is great as well! They make the audience part of the show! Propmt (they call out your name at the hotel lobby), and the tour guides speak English very well! CONS: booking is CRAZY!!!!! It could take MANY emails just to confirm the tours! You also will not get a formal confirmation letter with all the details of your tour(s). Though the tour guides speak excellent English, their booking department DOES NOT.
If only these tours would learn from each other- riomaximotour's timeliness and tour guide's enthursiasm MIXED with rdj4u's excellent online booking process (they also have a USA number and a BRAZIL number - so no global phone needed!) ----- it would be GREAT! :D