World Cup traffic jams: Citizens of Brazilian city Rio de Janeiro to enjoy three extra holidaysIn total the Maracanã will play host to seven matches -
This week Rio's municipal government declared public holidays during the tournament on June 18, June 25 and July 4.
The days coincide, respectively, with Spain against Chile, France against Ecuador and a to-be-determined quarter-final. All will be played at the iconic Maracanã Stadium.
With traffic expected to become even more gridlocked on match days, the decision is aimed at addressing Rio’s problems with road congestion.
National and public holidays are expected to cost Rio an estimated US$2.3 billion this year, according to a report from Firjan, a regional industry group.
The holiday declaration only serves to underscore tensions in Brazil about hosting one of the world's biggest and most expensive sporting events.
“This will certainly have a big impact on production,” Jonathas Goulart, an economist at Firjan.
“In Brazil there is an excessive number of holidays.”