Borders reopening, entry requirement, travel insurance, Covid test… All the information and advice you need to know to travel and enter in Costa Rica.
UPDATE October 26 – Passengers allowed to enter Costa Rica :
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA : Residents of Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, D.C., Arizona, Colorado, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Mexico, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Wyoming California and Ohio. Starting November 1 all U.S. citizens and residents will be welcome.
Are allowed too : tourists from THE EUROPEAN UNION SCHENGEN ZONE, CANADA, MEXICO, UNITED KINGDOM, URUGUAY, JAMAICA, JAPAN SOUTH KOREA, THAILAND, SINGAPORE, CHINA, AUSTRALIA and NEW ZEALAND.
This applies to both Juan Santamaría International Airport, near San José, and Daniel Oduber Quirós Airport in Liberia, Guanacaste. But doesn’t include Costa Rica’s land borders with Panama and Nicaragua. The process will be gradual.
Costa Rica no longer requires coronavirus test for entry
Since October 26, Costa Rica visitors arriving to Costa Rica DO NOT NEED to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test. “All local and foreign passengers who enter Costa Rica by air are not required to present a RT-PCR diagnostic test with negative result”, explained Costa Rica Tourism Board.
Here are the measures that every tourists must adhere to :
- Fill out the electronic epidemiological HEALTH PASS form
- Acquire travel insurance that covers medical care or an unexpected extended hotel stay
Additionally, American tourists must demonstrate that they live in the authorized states of entry to the country, by way of their state’s driver’s license or state ID. Tourists must also follow all airport and local health protocols.
Costa Rica health protocols
Epidemiological forms, social distancing, face coverings, sanitizing stations, sanitizer carpets and heat cameras to detect high temperatures… A video released by Aeris Holding, the SJO terminal’s management company, presents the sanitary protocols.
Each passenger entering or leaving the country will have to follow protocols including the presentation of the “pase de salud” (health pass form) to immigration authorities.
Regarding the traveler’s Medical Insurance, Costa Rica accept any qualifying travel insurance policy, even if the policy was not purchased through the National Insurance Institute (INS) or Sagicor. For international insurance policies, tourists must request a certification from their insurance company, issued in English or Spanish, verifying at least the following three conditions :
- Effectiveness of the policy during the visit to Costa Rica
- Guaranteed coverage of medical expenses in the event of becoming ill with the pandemic COVID-19 virus while in Costa Rica, for at least USD 50000 USD.
- Includes minimum coverage of USD 2000 USD for lodging expenses issued as a result of the pandemic
Tourist visa valid until March 2021
The country shut down its borders to arriving tourists and non-residents on March 18th, after a State of Emergency was declared due to the coronavirus pandemic on March 16th.
Typically Costa Rica issues tourist visas for a maximum stay of 90 days, but the Immigration Administration has shown flexibility during the context of COVID-19. Indeed, foreigners who entered Costa Rica on a tourist visa after 17 December 2019 and before 31 October 2020, can legally remain in Costa Rica until 2 March 2021. There is no need to apply for this to be processed, it is applied automatically.
Costa Rican authorities have been very proactive in helping to prevent COVID-19 from spreading within the country. Since the beginning of the epidemic, health authorities have been issuing daily press briefings. Thanks to its universal health insurance system and the measures taken by the government, Costa Rica is one of the safest countries to visit in America.