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First time Traveler Information for Costa Rica

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Your Passport

Your Passport must be valid for six months beyond the intended stay for entry to Costa Rica. You must show a return-ticket or an onward-travel ticket. No Visa is required for stays of up to 90 days and for citizens from the following countries: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France and dependencies, Germany, Greece, Holland and dependencies, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Romania, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, United Kingdom, United States of America, and Uruguay.

No visa is required for stay up to 30 days for citizens from the following countries. During the stay it is possible to solicit an extension which allows a stay of up to 90 days: Antigua & Barbuda, Australia, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Chile, Czech Republic, Dominica, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Honduras, Iceland, Ireland, Jamaica, Kenya, Kuwait, Mexico, New Zealand, Oman, Philippines, Qatar, Russia, San Cristobal / Nevis, San Marino, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Suriname, Taiwan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Vatican, Venezuela.

Travellers and citizens of all countries not listed above, nead a Visa obtained from a Costa Rican embassy or consulate before travelling to Costa Rica.

If you're travelling to the beaches, anything goes in terms of beachwear. Nudity is not legal but tolerated in some secluded places. When you visit the capital and higher parts of the country, it is necessary to bring a light sweater and warm clothes because it can get fresh and sometimes cold (at San Gerardo de Dota on the Inter-American Highway at 3000m altitude temperatures can become below freezing).There are no epidemics in Costa Rica, but it is recommended to get general vaccinations and we suggest you bring a medical history in case you become ill or if you are currently suffering from a illness. The tap water is safe in most parts of the country, and bottled water is available everywhere. If you require health assistance, Costa Rica provides good service at the hospitals and regional medical centres.

Always watch over your belongings at all times. Stealing in Costa Rica is a National pest. Keep your passport at the hotel and carry a photocopy including entrance stamps with you at all times. Don't bring or accept marked or ripped bills because there might be problems with acceptance. Many places don't like $100 bills. Always watch your step! Sidewalks tend to have holes and other pedestrian hazards. Do not bring or use any drugs. Marihuana is still considered a drug in Costa Rica. In the event of any emergency call 911.

Sincerely and with best regards from the team of Discovery Travel World, S.A.

Costa Rican Consulates and Embassies Abroad

Costa Rican Consulates provide information about visas, work permits, marriage and residency. They can issue tourist visas, authenticate documents and assist Costa Rican Citizens living abroad. Anyone seeking permanent residency in Costa Rica needs to have certain documents notarised by a Costa Rican consulate or embassy in their country of origin. Documents that must be notarised are a birth certificate, police certificate (stating you have no criminal record) and a proof of income statement. All this paper work should be taken care of before coming to Costa Rica. For a complete list and more information about immigration, click here.

If you apply for permanent residency in Costa Rica, it may take months to get notarised documents from your home country if it's possible at all. Each Costa Rican Consulate has its own business hours and its area of coverage. Please locate your nearest consulate for personal attention. If there is no consulate in your state, please locate the state or city nearest to your residence in the list below.

Consulates in the United States:

Atlanta: 1870 The Exchange Southeast N.W. Suite 100, Atlanta, GA. 30339
Tel: (770) 951-7025 Fax: (770)-951-7073

Boston: 175 McClennan Highway, East Boston. Ma 02146 or
175 McClennan Highway, East Boston, MA 02128-9114
Tel: (617) 561-2444 Fax: (617) 561-2461,

Chicago: (Includes Illinois, Indiana, Michigan,
Ohio, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota,
South Dakota, Indiana, and Wisconsin)
203 North Wabash Avenue., Suite 1312, Chicago, IL 60601
Tel: (312) 263-2772 Fax: (312) 263-5807
Dallas (Coverage: Dallas): 7777 Forest Ln., Suite B445,
Dallas, TX 75231 Tel: (972) 566-7020 Fax: (972) 566-7943

Denver: 3356 South Xenia Street, Denver, CO 80231-4542;
Tel: (303) 696-8211 Fax: (303) 696-1110

Houston: 3000 Wilcrest, Suite 112, Houston, TX 77042
Tel: (713) 266-0484 Fax: (713) 266-1527

Los Angeles: (Includes Southern California, Arizona,
Nevada, Utah, and Hawaii):
1605 West Olympic., Suite 400,
Los Angeles, CA 90015
Tel: (213) 380-6031 Fax: (213) 380-5639

Miami (Covers Florida): Consulate General,
1600 Northwest 42nd Avenue, Miami, FL 33126
Tel: (305)- 871-7487, 871 7485 Fax: (305) 871-0860 E-mail:

New Orleans: (Includes Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico,
Oklahoma and Tennesse)World Trade Center Bldg.,
2 Canal St., Suite 2334, New Orleans, LA 70130
Tel: (504) 581-6800 Fax: (504) 581-6850,

New York (Includes Connecticut, Maine,
Massachusetts, New England, New Hampshire,
New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island andVermont) :
80 Wall Street, Suite 718, New York, NY 10005
Tel: (212) 509-3066 Fax: 212 509-3068

Phoenix (Area of coverage Arizona):
1426 W, Key Largo Court,Gilbert, Arizona, 85034
Tel: (561) 5620-8307 Fax: (561) 620-5821

Puerto Rico: Consul General: Adriana Bolaños A.
1413 Ave. Fernandez Juncos,
Suite 2-D,
San Juan, Puerto Rico 00909
Tel: (787) 723-6227 Fax: (787) 723-6226,

San Antonio: Continental Building , 6836 San Pedro,
Suite 116, San Antonio, TX 78216
Tel: (210) 824-8474 Fax: (210) 824-8489

San Francisco (Includes, Alaska, Idaho, Montana,
Northern California,Oregon and Washington):
P.O. Box 7643, Freemont, Ca 94536,
Tel: (510) 790-0785 Fax: (510) 792-5249
St. Paul: 2424 Territorial Road, St. Paul, MN 55114,
Tel: (651) 645-410 3Fax: (651) 645-4684

Tampa: 2204 Barker Road, Tampa, FL 33605,
Tel: (813) 248-6741 Fax: 813) 248-6857

Washington (Covers all of U.S. territory):
2114 “S” Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20008;
Tel: (202) 3286628 Fax: (202) 265-4795

Consulate England

14 Lancaster Gate, 325 Dalhouse St, Suite 407
London, England

Consulates Canada

Ontario K1N 7G2 K2P 1B7
Tel: (613)562-0842
Tel: 071-723-1772
Fax: (613) 562-2582

614 Centre A. Street N.W., 164 Avenue Road
Calgary, Alberta
Toronto, Ontario M5R 2H9
Tel: (416) 961-6773

145 Chadwik Court 1425 René Levexque-West
Suite 320 Suite 602
North Vancouver, B.C Montreal, H3G 1T7
V6C 1H2 Tel: (514) 393-1057
Tel: (604) 983-2152 Fax: (514) 393-1624
Fax: (604) 983-2178

  • To obtain a complete list of embassies and consulates visit the Costa Rican Foreign Ministry web site at: Costa Rican Foreign Ministry