Costa Rica travel medical insurance and visa guide
January 04, 2019
Situated in Central America, Costa Rica is boasting in scenic beauty. There’s lots to do in Costa Rica, from soaking up the sun on its tropical beaches to enjoying hikes surrounded by beautiful topography. There’s a lot to get excited about when organizing your visit. To fully enjoy your adventure, make sure you give yourself peace of mind and organize your travel insurance policy as soon as possible, so you can kick back, relax and enjoy your vacation knowing that you have got all your bases covered.
Aside from finding the right cover for you, here are some other important travel tips to be aware of before you set off on your adventure:
Visa Information for Costa Rica
Do I Need a Visa to Visit Costa Rica?
U.S. Citizens traveling to Costa Rica are eligible to stay for up to 90 days without a visa permitting they have a valid U.S. passport. However, you must enter the country with a departure ticket ready. Along with this, your passport should be valid for at least six months.
Health and Medical Advice
Before jetting off on your travels, you should check for any health risks, required vaccinations and any epidemic breakouts occurring in Costa Rica. It’s also a good idea to find out where the nearest hospital is in case of an emergency.
Do I Need to be Vaccinated When Travelling to?
There are no obligatory vaccination shots for Costa Rica, but we would highly recommend that you get protected against Typhoid, Hepatitis A and B and Rabies as well as getting your routine vaccinations updated. The standard vaccines are:
- MMR (Measles, Mumps, Rubella)
- Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis
Dengue fever (a mosquito-borne disease) is also common in Costa Rica; therefore, it is important to make sure that you use proper mosquito repellents.
Health authorities have classified Costa Rica as having a risk of Zika virus transmission. Travellers should take precaution. It is recommended that pregnant women do not travel to areas with risk of Zika virus.
Book an appointment with your local practitioner or find your local Passport health clinic. You should book an appointment, at the latest, four to six weeks before your trip, giving enough time for the vaccinations to take effect.
Emergency Contact Information in Costa Rica
No one ever wants to have to call the emergency services whilst they’re on vacation, but unfortunately, accidents happen and it’s important to be prepared for when they do.
Emergency contact number: 911
Costa Rica Local Laws and Customs
In Costa Rica, the possession or use of drugs is illegal and can result in a minimum of 8 years imprisonment.
Safety and Security
Swimming and water sports
Rip tides in Costa Rica are very common. Be careful when participating in water sports or swimming at any beach in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica has 16 volcanoes, several of these are active. Their increased activity has caused national park and airport closures previously, which could occur again at any time.
Petty theft is a considerable problem in Costa Rica, you should always take care of your belongings and remain aware of your surroundings. On public transport, don’t store your baggage in the overhead compartments as this could leave it subject to theft, instead keep it with you at all times. Lastly, do not to flash your valuables or leave them lying around on the beach.
U.S. Embassy San Jose
Calle 98 Vía 104, Pavas
San José, Costa Rica
Phone: (506) 2519-2000
Fax: (506) 2519-2305
Useful Tips for Costa Rica
Official Languages: Spanish
Spanish is the official language in Costa Rica, however, English is also widely spoken in hotels and tourist areas.
Currency: Costa Rican colon
Before your trip make sure to exchange enough Costa Rican colon for your spending requirements and to get the best exchange rates. U.S dollar is also often accepted in places around the country.
Plug Sockets: Types A and B
Costa Rica uses Type A and B plug sockets. The standard voltage and frequency is 120V and 50 Hz. We would recommend that you buy a plug adapter if you don’t have one already.
You can determine if you need a converter or a transformer by looking at the appliance rating plate. A dual voltage rated appliance will display for example ‘INPUT: 110-240 V’ on the appliance body. In this case, you wouldn’t need a converter or transformer.
© 2018 UnitedHealth Group Incorporated. For informational purposes, UHG does not guarantee the correctness or completeness of the information.