Some of country's biggest ever rallies sweep major cities as bus fare rise is last straw in spiral of high costs and poor services
Reflecting the importance of social networks in spreading the message about the protests, some in São Paulo – where numbers were estimated at between 30,000 and 100,000 – carried banners declaring "We come from Facebook".
Most protesters were young and for many it was their first experience of such a giant rally. "My generation has never experienced this," said Thiago Firbida, a student. "Since the dictatorship Brazilians never bothered to take over the streets. They did not believe they had a reason to. But now Brazil is once again in crisis, with a constant rise in prices, so people are finally reacting."