2008 Roadtrip The cost of petrol/gasoline in Brazil and Argentina

On our first day in Argentina we filled up with unleaded premium gasoline/petrol at AP$2.78/US $.89 a liter. We had filled up the day before in Brazil with the same kind of gas. In Brazil a liter cost R$2.69/US $1.62. Just about double!

We usually full up at 3/4 of a tank (39.87 liters) and so that amount of gas in Brazil cost us US$64.59, and in Argentina on May 31, 2008 it cost AP$110/US $35.48. Unbelievable.

By the way, for US readers, a gallon is about 4 liters. So in Brazil it would cost US $6.48 a gallon and in Argentina it would cost US$3.56 a gallon!

Oh, and while we're talking about gas, when we crossed the border into Brazil from Argentina, we just assumed that we could get unleaded gas in Brazil for our Subaru Legacy stationwagon. We stopped at a gas station and we (that means Dimitri) was having trouble communicating with the attendant in Portuguese to find out if there was unleaded gas (sem plombo). At the second station we stopped at Dimitri had the same problem and we needed gas. Dimitri said that our car would not drive on anything but unleaded gas.

After the second gas station, we pulled out the Lonely Planet Brazil guidebook and read the Fuel & Spare Parts section. We really got scared because it said: "Ordinary gasoline (called combustĂ­vel or gasolina) costs around R$2.80 per litre. Travelers planning to take their own vehicles need to check in advance what spare parts and gasoline are likely to be available. Unleaded gas is not on sale across Brazil, and neither is every little part for your car (Brazil does have plenty of Volkswagon parts)."

At the third gas station Dimitri could communicate with the attendant. He said that all gas in Brazil is unleaded (in spite of what Lonely Planet said) and we filled up. The car continued to drive in Brazil on gasolina especial for two months.

If you would like more information on this topic, send us an e-mail and we would be glad to try to answer your questions. E-mail address: aleanddm@gmail.com

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