Updated Information about Covid-19 Crisis

Dear clients and tour operators:

Please find important information regarding COVID-19. Since new information is constantly coming in, we suggest that you visit this page regularly so that you can react to changes.

The current situation in Costa Rica

  • International recognition: The country was awarded the Safe Travels or Safe Destination seal by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), thanks to the implementation of the 16 health protocols for tourism activities.
  • In addition to the countries in the Schengen area, the European Union, the United Kingdom and Canada, which were allowed to arrive as of Aug. 1, from August 14th Asian nations such as Japan, Thailand and China are now included in the list, as are Oceania countries such as Australia and New Zealand, while Latin American countries will be allowed to arrive from Uruguay. As of September 1, in addition to residents of New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine and Connecticut, those living in Maryland, Virginia, District of Columbia, will be able to enter by air. As of September 15, residents of Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Wyoming, Arizona, Nuevo México, Michigan, Rhode Island and Ohio will also be allowed to enter. Also from October 1st the borders will be opened for Mexican and Jamaican citizens.

    The conditions to enter the country are:
    1. Fill out an online epidemiological form before traveling
    2. A negative Covid-19 test (PCR) within 72 hours before traveling
    3. Insurance valid during the whole stay in Costa Rica, that cover medical expenses for Covid-19 for the amount of at least USD 50'000 and that cover costs of a possible quarantine for the amount of at least USD 2'000.                                       4. For US only: US tourists must show a state-issued ID to prove they are a resident from an authorized state.

  • Tourists can leave Costa Rica by plane and can also enter their home country. However, some countries require quarantine at home for 2 weeks. Please inform yourself about the conditions in your country.
  • Costa Rica has (as of September 29) 74.604 confirmed cases of Covid-19 diseases, 30.703 recoveries, and 880 confirmed deaths. Please strictly adhere to known hygiene measures and behaviors when coughing and sneezing.
  • The following airlines resume flights to Costa Rica:

    • Iberia: MAD-SJO every Friday and Monday from August 03rd  and SJO-MAD on Saturdays and Tuesdays
    • Lufthansa: FRA-SJO-FRA on Wednesdays and Saturdays from August 5th 
    • Edelweiss: ZRH-SJO-ZRH on Thursdays from October 15th 
    • Air France: Starting operations from 14 October to/from Paris
    • KLM: Starts operations on October 27 from /to Amsterdam
    • British Airways: Starts operations on 27 October from/to Gatwick
    • Condor: not confirmed yet


  • As of 1 September, the country begins a transition phase and applies to cantons on an orange alert, while cantons on yellow alert continue to function normally.

    As of 9 September, all cantons are operating under the controlled reopening phase.

    Transition phase 1 to 8 September (only cantons on orange alert)

    In cantons on an orange alert, a transitional closure phase will be implemented towards a controlled reopening model. During these 8 days, restrictive measures are established for the opening of establishments.

  • May operate from Monday to Sunday without time restrictions:
    • Hotels will be able to operate throughout the country with 100% capacity. In the common areas of these hotels (restaurants, swimming pools, gyms, among others) capacity of 50% must be maintained
    • Swimming pools, restaurants, hotel gyms, cabins, or accommodation establishments, with an occupancy rate of fifty percent (50%).
    • Centers with thermal water pools, with a capacity of occupation at fifty percent (50%).
    • Beaches and lakes from Monday to Sunday from 5:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., with a distance of 1.8 meters, respecting the social bubbles. This access includes non-contact sports activities.
    • Rent a car.
    • National Parks, with a capacity of occupation of fifty percent (50%).
    • Shops within the national and international terminals of the Juan Santamaría and Daniel Oduber International Airport, with a capacity of occupation at fifty percent (50%).
    • Home - express
    • Public institutions in general and municipalities.
    • Public and private health establishments (clinics, pharmacies, hospitals, laboratories, doctor's offices, radio diagnostic services, emergency services, opticians, macrobiotics, among others)
    • Health services in mobile units in compliance with Executive Decree No. 41045-S.
    • Supermarkets, suppliers, grocery stores, and mini-supermarkets, with an occupancy capacity of fifty percent (50%).
    • Bakeries, and greengrocers, with an occupancy capacity of fifty percent (50%).
    • Farmers' market, with an occupancy capacity of fifty percent (50%), with strict protocols and a differentiated band for adults over 5:00 hours to 8:30 hours.
    • Repair of vehicles, engines in general, motorbikes, tires, cycles, and bicycle workshops, with a capacity of occupation at fifty percent (50%).
    • Fuel supply and provisioning.
    • Public or private banking and financial services, in financial or non-financial entities, with an occupancy capacity of fifty percent (50%).
    • Public car parks or car parks.
    • All other establishments with a health permit to operate that do not provide care to the public in person.
  • May operate from Monday to Friday from 5:00 to 22:00 and from Saturday to Sunday from 5:00 to 20:00 with an occupancy capacity of fifty percent (50%)

    • Restaurants (shops with a bar and restaurant license will only be allowed to operate the restaurant area with alcoholic drinks).
    • Sodas and cafeterias.
    • Food places.
    • Shops in general.
  • Will be able to operate from Monday to Friday from 5:00 am to 10:00 pm, and from Saturday to Sunday from 5:00 am to 8:00 pm, with differentiated seating capacity:

    • Adventure tourism, with the obligatory use of a mask or face shield while putting on and taking off the safety equipment to carry out the activity, and respecting the social bubbles.
    • Self-service mode or withdrawal of products remaining inside the vehicle.
    • Modality of food withdrawal in a take-away establishment.
    • Individual sports, outdoors, or indoors, without an audience.


  • All the beaches in the country are open from Monday to Sunday until 14:30.


    The cantons on yellow alert will continue the process of reopening establishments.

    Regulation of establishments

    As of September 9th, the controlled opening phase will begin for establishments that have a sanitary operating permit that serve the public, from Monday to Friday from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., and from Saturday to Sunday from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., respecting fifty percent (50%) of their maximum capacity.

    The Ministry of Health establishes a series of activities that must be kept closed due to their very high level of risk, such as mass gatherings, bars, casinos, among others. There is also a list of establishments that can operate but with a differentiated capacity, such as places of worship, event halls, cinemas, and theatres.

    The event rooms for business or academic activities may operate with a maximum of 75 people (with a minimum seating space of 1.8 meters, respecting the social bubbles and with lists of attendees with ID and contact numbers). The 75 people do not include event logistics personnel. The rest of the activities in event halls (weddings or baby showers) must be kept with a maximum of 30 people.

     Vehicle restriction:

    Starting this Monday, August 31st and throughout September, in cantons with an orange and yellow alert, a unified vehicle restriction is established throughout the country, from Monday to Friday from 5:00 to 22:00 and Saturday and Sunday from 5:00 to 20:00. Except for the list of exceptions, they do not circulate:

    • Mondays: 1 and 2
    • Tuesday: 3 and 4
    • Wednesdays: 5 and 6
    • Thursdays: 7 and 8
    • Friday: 9 and 0
    • Saturday: 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8 (pairs)
    • Sunday: 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9 (odd)

    Accommodations such as hotels, cabins, accommodation establishments, or non-traditional accommodation and intermediation through digital platforms are part of the list of exceptions to vehicle restrictions.


Stay healthy!

Your ARA Tours team

Contact Information

WhatsApp: +506-8893-3863
Phone: +506-2232-0400
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Apdo 799 – 1007
San José, Costa Rica

Licenced by the Costa Rican Tourist Board: Lic ICT OT 294

Liability insurance: Instituto Costarricense de Seguros (INS) Coverage: Territory of the Republic of Costa Rica

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