Brazil's economic hub, São Paulo, isn't always on the top of Portuguese learners lists when trying to decide where in Brazil to learn Portuguese. However, it makes a lot of sense if you're looking to couple your courses with an internship, or want to learn Portuguese to get a leg up in a career in international business.
Are you still trying to figure out if São Paulo is the best place in Brazil for you to head off to to learn Portuguese? Then read on...Photo credit: Artur Luiz dos Santos
Taking language courses at a university works best for learners currently enrolled in a college or university, since many universities can place their students in institutions overseas. Universities that are popular amongst students are São Paulo University and Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado.
A homestay is the ultimate way to immerse yourself in the Portuguese language. This allows you to learn the language while living with a host family and while taking courses at the same time; usually the program provides the courses for you. Some programs also offer a combination of living and teaching homestays to keep the costs low, as well.
Language study & volunteer combination programs
In addition to language learning, many programs also offer volunteer opportunities for participants. Not only will you learn the language through the classroom, but also you’ll be able to directly apply it when volunteering! It will be a true immersion experience.
Living in São Paulo isn't cheap, but it's relatively affordable -- especially compared to Rio.
If you're staying long term, rent per month in a one bedroom apartment ranges from 1,200R$ (Brazilian real) to 1,700R$. Milk is 3R$, a dozen eggs are 4R$, and bread is also 4R$. Local transportation is typical for any city, however, taking the Metro costs around 3R$ per ticket, and taxis start at around 4.20R$.
If you're a student in the United States, you may qualify for the Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships Program, sponsored by the US Department of Education.
Also worth looking into is the Critical Language Scholarship Program, which focuses on intensive language study over the summer.