Tuesday 3 October 2023

130 laboratories have authorization to perform covid-19 tests in Costa Rica

Ministry of Health and the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) joined forces to help people who want to travel

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QCOSTARICA – The Ministry of Health and the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT) joined forces to provide facilities to people who want or need to travel to countries such as the United States (starting January 26) and the United Kingdom, Canada and Spain, where the coronavirus test is a mandatory requirement to enter and in others soon it will be.

On Thursday they confirmed that there are currently 130 authorized laboratories in Tiquicia (Costa Rica) to test for covid-19 and make things easier for travelers.

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The Minister of Tourism, Gustavo Segura, said that the maximum price that private laboratories can charge within the Greater Metropolitan Area for the tests is US$100 (¢61,400) and outside the GAM US$150 (¢ 92,100).

Test results must be delivered within 48 hours.

The ICT, in conjunction with the Chamber of Tourism (Canatur), will inform the private tourism sector to serve as a liaison with passengers and give quick access to the tests.

In addition, they are work on a possible training of airline personnel for the proper reading of the results of each laboratory and the recognition of their validity.

The test must be provided to the airline prior to boarding.

In addition, countries like Canada and the United States require travelers to self-isolation on arrival. In the case of Canada, self-isolation is for 14 days; in the case of the United States see Executive Order on Promoting COVID-19 Safety in Domestic and International Travel.

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Testing locations do not require a doctor’s referral, many do require an appointment. Most locations accept appointments via telephone.

Among the laboratories, clinics and hospitals are:

Outside the Greater Metropolitan Areas (GAM)

  • Laboratorio Bioclinic, Limon center
  • Lab. Calderón González, Perez Zeledon
  • Hospital Metropolitano, Quepos
  • Laboratorio clínico Jaco, Playa Jaco
  • Hospital Metropolitano Liberia, Guanacaste
  • Paradise Medical Services, Nosara, Guanacaste
  • Lab Medical Huacas, Santa Cruz, Guanacaste
  • Lab Echandi, Ciudad Quesada (San Carlos)
  • Labin – Tres Ríos, Cartago

In the GAM:

  • Lab Echandi, more than 20 locations
  • Labin, more than 30 locations
  • Lab Paez, multiple locations
  • Lab San Jose, multiple Locations
  • Hostipal CIMA, in Escazu
  • Hospital Clinical Biblica, downtown San Jose and Santa Ana
  • Hospital Metropolitano, in San Jose and Santa Ana
  • Hospital La Católica, Goicoechea
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The complete list is available at the ICT website: https://www.ict.go.cr/es/documentos-institucionales/material-de-apoyo-coronavirus/pruebas-covid-para-usa/1883-laboratorios-autorizados-a-realizar-pruebas-para-la-detecci%C3%B3n-del-virus-sars-cov-2-en-costa-rica/file.html

We will be updating the information with any changes and/or additions to the list.

Travel to Costa Rica

PCR testing is NOT required to enter Costa Rica.

A) Visitors traveling to Costa Rica will need to provide proof of a medical insurance policy to cover any COVID-19 related medical treatment or quarantine lodging while in Costa Rica.

  • In the case of international insurance, tourists must request from their insurer a certification issued in English or Spanish, noting: a) the validity of the policy during the dates of visit to Costa Rica, b) guarantee of coverage for medicals expenses in cases of COVID-19 related medical treatment in the amount of 50,000 USD and, c) minimum coverage of US$2,000 for extended lodging expenses due to COVID-19 related illness.
  • It is also possible to purchase a Costa Rican medical insurance policy through the National Insurance Institute (INS) or Sagicor of Costa Rica, covering the duration of your stay in Costa Rica.
  • Costa Rican Immigration officials have sole authority to determine the length of stay for tourists entering Costa Rica. Immigration officials are currently limiting the duration of stay to correspond with coverage dates provided by the COVID-19 medical insurance.
  • Tourists are able to extend their stay while in Costa Rica, though the process can be complicated and cumbersome. See our note here.  For most seeking to extend their stay, it is best to exit the country and purchase additional COVID-19 medical insurance (if existing policy has expired) prior to reentry.
  • All visitors must also complete an online Health Pass 48 hours prior to travel to Costa Rica.
  • In addition to the coronavirus-related measures, Tourists must also have a valid passport and proof of intent to exit Costa Rica.

B) Permanent or temporary residents of Costa Rican may also enter Costa Rica via air or through authorized land border crossings and must present the following documentation:

  • Passport.
  • Valid DIMEX.
  • Evidence of Caja payments up to date for each person entering. Those who are not up to date with Caja payments will still be allowed to enter but will be required to become up to date with all payments within 22 days. Persons in this category must also purchase health insurance to cover the cost of any COVID-19 treatment or lodging for the 22-day grace period.
  • A completed Health Pass.
  • Temporary or permanent residents who enter Costa Rica via a designated land border crossing will receive a sanitary order requiring a 14 day in-home quarantine.

C) Costa Rica citizens will require a completed Health Pass.




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"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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