Costa Rica announced the reopening of its border to visitors from all the U.S. states starting on November 1st.
The country began the first phase of its reopening on August 1st after almost 5 months of closure due to the pandemic. Since that day, Costa Rica opened its airports, the Juan SantamarĂa International Airport (SJO), and Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR), to citizens from Canada, the United Kingdom, and Europe.
Arriving visitors must follow the entry requirements established by the government that are negative COVID-19 test and travel insurance.
On Â September 1st, Costs Rica started to gradually authorize the entry of certain states of the United States.
According to Costa Ricaâ€™s Tourism Minister, Gustavo Segura, only countries with controlled spread of the virus were going to be added to the list as the situation progresses. This list was updated every two weeks since September 1st. Costa Rica added more than 22 states of the United States.
In 2019, Costa Rica welcomed 3.1 million foreign visitors. More than 1.3 million tourists came from the United States, nearly 235,000 from Canada, and more than 500,000 people arrived from Europe.
If you are considering visiting Costa Rica, here are six important things to know before planning your vacation.
1. What countries are allowed to enter?
- More than 44 countries are authorized to enter; including Canada
Since September 1st, Costa Rica started to welcome tourists from six states of the United States: Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, or Virginia (and Washington, D.C.)
- On September 15, the list expanded with Colorado, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Washington, Oregon, Wyoming, Arizona, New Mexico, Michigan, and Rhode Island
- October 1st, CaliforniaÂ andÂ Ohio were added to the list
- October 15th, Florida, Georgia, and Texas
- November 1st, Costa Rica authorized the entry of tourists from the entire United States
2. Entry Requirements
- Complete digital epidemiological form â€śHealth Passâ€ť
- Negative PCR coronavirus test. The test must be taken 72 hours before arrival.
- Travel insurance â€“ international or purchased through the Costa Rica National Insurance Institute- that covers medical care, or an unexpected extended hotel stay due to COVID-19.Â Â Â This policy can be international or purchased from Costa Rican insurers. More details on the type of coverage needed here.
- Travelers opting for foreign travel insurance must demonstrate pdf proof in English or Spanish; coverage for medical expenses for at least $50,000 and a minimum of $2,000 for extended stay expenses. Protect Your Travel Experience
- Travelers must have remained in an authorized country for at least 14 days before travel.
- Face masks in all indoor circumstances are mandatory. The only exceptions are at restaurants and all open-air tourism activities.
3. What is open?
- Tourist attractions are operating normally. This includes all open-air activities.
- Starting October 15th, Beaches open daily from 5 am to 10 pm on weeknights; from 5 am to 8 pm on weekends.
- Most national parks are open
- Hotels can operate at 100% capacity
- Restaurants can operate at up to 50% capacity.
- Essential services like supermarkets, pharmacies, health clinics, are operating normally
- Bars can operate at up to 50% capacity. Dancing is not allowed. Acrylic barriers at the bar.
- Casinos can operate at up to 50% capacity. Temperature screening; constant sanitation of machines and chips; alcoholic beverages not permitted.
4. What is closed?
- Amusement Park
- Skate parks, jumping parks, inflatables, and similar
- Mass-gathering events in general like concerts, public shows, fairgrounds, sports activities with public, popular celebrations, and organization of conventions and commercial exhibitions
- Religious activities such as processions
What airlines are flying to and from Costa Rica? Click Here
5. The restrictions you should be aware of
- There are driving restrictions in place. Travelers are exempt if driving a rental car to/from the airport, or to/from a hotel.
- Most businesses will close at 10 p.m. on weekdays and 8 p.m. on weekends.
- Mandatory wear of masks inside any public establishment. Exceptions: restaurants, hotel rooms, infants, and people with certain disabilities.
- Some establishments may require guests to wash their hands and/or get their temperature check
- Expected to maintain physical distancing 6 feet or greater
6. What happens if I get COVID-19 symptoms while in Costa Rica?
- Dial 1322. English-speaking operators are available
- If you test positive, there is mandatory 14-day quarantine stay at your hotel room
- If vacationing with Costa Rica Dream Adventures, travelers can call our 24/7 in-country travel support for assistance
Since its first reported case on March 6th, 2020, Costa Rica, a country of 5 million people, has 77,829Â confirmed cases; 42,621 people have recovered so far, and there have been 930 deaths as of October 3rd, 2020.
See daily statistics.
This article was originally published at Costa Rica Dream Adventures.