UPDATE JUNE 2021: Traveling to Costa Rica During Covid

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Here is the COVID update as of June 2021. In brief YES come to Costa Rica. There are minor inconveniences due to COVID restrictions but it is a brilli...

Дата загрузки:2021-06-16T01:25:08+0000

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Here is the COVID update as of June 2021. In brief YES come to Costa Rica. There are minor inconveniences due to COVID restrictions but it is a brilliant time to travel. Availability at hotels, vacation rentals, cars available to rent. Less traffic, empty beaches. Below I have put links to all the key resources you need before you travel, and the procedures for testing prior to your return.
1. Beforeyoufly
Please check your embassy’s current advice, see the links below. Most countries allow you to visit Costa RIca, and Costa Rica allows most nationalities in. You need to buy insurance approved by the Costa Rican government, Trawick is constantly recommended but there are others below that work well and are reasonably priced. Guide insurance rates are under $200 for a 90 day stay but depends on your age/ price of airline ticket etc.
You then need to fill in the Costa Rican travel passport, see the link below. No need to print it, but have it saved on your phone.
No COVID test is required when you are flying in to Costa Rica.
2. Flying to Costa Rica - Airports and Immigration
Airports seem to be returning to normality. Most shops and restaurants are now open in the terminals. You need to wear a mask from when you arrive at the airport, through when you leave the Costa Rican airport, so it could be many hours, i found the cheap masks rubbing behind my ears. Often the airlines won't let you check in online and sail through; they want a face to face meet in order to check your insurance and travel passport.
Costa Rican immigration wait time and checks don't seem to have changed. They check you meet the requirements, but there are less travellers, so on balance the time waiting in line hasn't changed much
3. Day to Day living in CR under COVID
COVID rules are countrywide, but restrictions in the capital San Jose seem to be more strict, because they are enforced. At the beaches everything is open as normal and the attitude much more relaxed, but they do have to close at 9pm.. If you want to continue past 9pm there always seem to be pop up parties on the street, in villas or on the beach. There is some nominal effort to social distance but no one seems to care so it doesn't really happen. In general there is slightly less tourism, so beaches are empty, and there is always availability at hotels, car hire places and vacation rentals. The only places that seem to implement mask wearing are the supermarkets and stores.

There are vehicular restrictions, odd and even days depending on the last number on your license plate. This does not apply to hire cars, who can drive every day.
4. Preparing to return home
You need to book the COVID test about a week ahead of your departure date. You need to do a test within 3 days of your departure. US only requires the rapid/antigen/flow test, which returns results in a matter of hours. The UK requires a PCR test and here it gets complicated because it can take up to 48 hours to get the result. Another complication is that the beaches don't have test centers, so they send the samples to San Jose so that can add to the time. Mysteriously my results came back in under 24 hours so not sure what happened there. When you go for the test then take your passport and flight info. You will need to fill in a badly organized questionnaire called mipreubacovid (my Covid test). Double check you fill in what you are supposed to, it is easy to miss a section, click send and then it throws you back to the start, i had to do it 5 or 6 times
5. Costa Rica airports
I wasn't allowed to check in online, because they want to check your COVID test before you get your boarding pass. The planes were about half full and were somewhat back to normal. Both Costa Rica airports are scandalously expensive so eat and drink before you arrive. Eg. $6 for a bottle of water that is $2 in a supermarket
Insurance
Country of origin advice
https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/covid-4
/coronavirus-costa-rica
https://cr.usembassy.gov/covid-19-informati on/
https://travel.gc.ca/destinations/costa-rica
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/cos
ta-rica
Before you travel to Costa Rica:
Health Passport:
https://salud.go.cr/
https://www.trawickinternational.com/travel-i
nsurance-plans/costa-rica-required-travel-in
surance
https://micrositios.ins-cr.com/seguroviajero/
https://tiendasagicor.com/en/
COVID Testing before return
https://www.twoweeksincostarica.com/covid
-19-test-costa-rica/
Pre testing questionairre:
https://www.mipruebacovid.com/
Tamarindo area clinics
Dr. Mendez, COVID-19 test, Tamarindo. Call +506-8829-8009, +506-2653-4141
Clinica Medica Villarreal, Tamarindo, for Covid1919 test- call +506-2653-3131
Beach side Clinic
Metropolitan Clinic
Diria Hotel Salinas Hostel

General resources
https://www.visitcostarica.com/en/costa-rica/
planning-your-trip/entry-requirements
https://ticotimes.net/post-covid-19-updates
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