This study sought to evaluate the pre-test counseling process in the HIV Testing and Counseling Centers (CTA) in Rio de Janeiro State, based on the perceptions of users and health professionals. A population survey was performed, based on a structured questionnaire given to a sample of users and counselors of nine CTAs. Quantitative analyses were employed to evaluate the degree of satisfaction in relation to infrastructure indicators of the way patients are received and treated, the user-counselor relationship, and territoriality, accessibility and availability. Among the CTA users interviewed, 58.1% were very satisfied and 38.7% were satisfied with the care received, according to analysis of set of indicators. The majority of health professionals (80.9%) interviewed also declared their satisfaction. Despite the high level of satisfaction, some complaints regarding structural and procedural aspects were identified, which call for the attention of the health managers and professionals for the enhancement of the quality of the service rendered.