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Brief Published: 9 Feb 2012

Brazil’s Boom


Brazilian airlines are looking to more innovative forms of traditional retail to engage with the country's emerging middle class. In the face of the rise of e-commerce, Brazil's largest airline, TAM, and its low-cost competitor, GOL, have opened information kiosks in subway stations that provide the option to book, change or cancel flights.

The first GOL kiosks were opened in Sao Paulo in March 2011, with TAM following suit in August, and subsequently expanding into bus stations. The projects aim to make plane tickets more accessible to the population.

Although the airlines have not revealed their next retail strategy, both are said to be exploring even more possible methods of distribution. However, what is certain is that Brazilian tourism will continue to grow – by at least 4.5% on average year on year, according to Hong Kong-based Tourism Intelligence International.

US-based internet market research firm eMarketer estimates the country’s business-to-consumer e-commerce (including travel sales) will hit $18.7bn (£11.3bn) in 2012 – a rise of 21.9% over the previous year.