The Simón Bolívar International Airport (airport code CCS; tel. 0212/303-1330; www.aeropuerto-maiquetia.com.ve) in Maiquetía, 28km (17 miles) north of Caracas, is the gateway to Venezuela and the point of entry for most visitors to the country. There is a departure tax of BsF110 combined with an airport tax of BsF138. The airport tax is sometimes included in the airline ticket price, so be sure to ask before paying twice.
From Australia & New Zealand -- To fly to Venezuela from either Australia or New Zealand, you will almost certainly have to connect via the United States.
From Canada -- Air Canada (tel. 888/247-226; www.aircanada.com) flies several times weekly between Toronto and Caracas. American (tel. 800/433-7300; www.aa.com), Continental (tel. 800/525-0280; www.continental.com), Delta (tel. 800/221-1212; www.delta.com), and Mexicana (tel. 800/531-7921; www.mexicana.com) have flights from Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver to Caracas, connecting through Atlanta, Miami, Los Angeles, or New York.
Numerous charters fly from Toronto and Montreal to Isla de Margarita, particularly during the winter months. Ask your travel agent, check online, or look in the Sunday travel section of your local newspaper to find them.
From Europe & the U.K. -- Air Europa (tel. 902/401-501 in Spain; www.air-europa.com) from Madrid, Air France (tel. 800/237-2747; www.airfrance.com) from Paris, Alitalia (tel. 800/223-5730; www.alitalia.com) from Rome and Milan, Iberia (tel. 800/772-4642; www.iberia.com) from Madrid, and Lufthansa (tel. 800/645-3880; www.lufthansa.com) from Frankfurt all offer regular service to Venezuela. Santa Bárbara (tel. 212/204-4000; www.sbairlines.com) flies direct from Madrid several times weekly.
From the U.S. -- American Airlines, Continental, and Delta Airlines have regular direct service to Caracas from several different U.S. hub cities. Venezuelan airline Santa Bárbara also has one daily direct flight from Miami. Mexicana and Taca (tel. 800/400-8222; www.taca.com) have flights connecting through Mexico City, Mexico, and San José, Costa Rica, respectively.
Venezuela is serviced by international bus routes via Colombia to the west and Brazil to the south. In general, crossings from Colombia are considered dangerous, due to guerrilla and drug-cartel activity, and political tensions between the two countries. The only road route between Brazil and Venezuela connects Boa Vista, Brazil, and Santa Elena de Uairén, Venezuela. Bus Ven (tel. 0212/953-8441; www.busven.com) is a reputable bus line for travel to and from Colombia. To travel to Brazil, you will first have to make your way south via local bus lines to Santa Elena.
Ferry services run between several Caribbean islands and Isla de Margarita, Venezuela. Routes and schedules vary seasonally and change on short notice. Islands with the most consistent connections include Barbados, St. Vincent, and Trinidad and Tobago.