Although public transportation is for the most part accessible in Rio de Janeiro, the convenience of a taxi is always welcome. It’s more efficient, accessible and much less of a hassle.
Fortunately, a reputable wheelchair transportation service does operate in Rio de Janeiro. The wheelchair accessible vehicles used are lift-equipped, and were exactly what I needed while traveling in Brazil.
Especial Coop operates a fleet of wheelchair accessible taxis in Rio de Janeiro. Each taxi has a wheelchair lift, capable of carrying larger power wheelchairs like my Permobil F3.
A raised rooftop ensures sufficient headroom for wheelchair users. Securement straps are used to ensure that the wheelchair remains safely in place during the ride.
Drivers may speak some English, but this should not be expected.
The taxi is charged according to a meter, with the rates as follows:
- Flag Drop — 7.30 BRL (~$1.75 USD)
- Per kilometer — 4 BRL (~$1.00 USD)
The cost of an airport transfer to/from central Rio de Janeiro is about $25 USD, with trips to/from Copacabana costing a bit more. At least one hour of advance notice is required to book a ride. The easiest way to make a reservation is by messaging the company though WhatsApp. Contact details are provided below:
If you ride with Especial Coop, be sure to let us know how it went in the comments below! Alternatively, If you know of another wheelchair taxi service in Rio de Janeiro that should be listed here, please share!