QCOSTARICA – The U.S. Department of State has lifted the “Do Not Travel” level 4 advisory advising its citizens to avoid all travel to Costa Rica.
On October 13, the travel advisory was improved to level 3: “Reconsider Travel to Costa Rica due to COVID-19. Exercise increased caution in Costa Rica due to crime.”
The advisory states:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Costa Rica due to COVID-19.
Costa Rica has lifted stay at home orders and resumed some transportation options and business operations. Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Costa Rica.
Country Summary: While petty crime is the predominant threat for tourists in Costa Rica, violent crime, including armed robbery, homicide and sexual assault, occurs in Costa Rica. The Costa Rican government provides additional security resources in areas frequented by tourists.
If you decide to travel to Costa Rica:
- See the U.S. Embassy’s web page regarding COVID-19.
- Visit the CDC’s webpage on Travel and COVID-19.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
- Do not display signs of wealth, such as wearing expensive watches or jewelry.
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
- U.S. citizens should always exercise caution when traveling abroad.
- Follow the Department of State on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
- Review the Crime and Safety Report for Costa Rica.
- Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.
Tourism Minister, Gustavo Segura, applauded the adjustment in the travel notice published by the US Department of State.
“This is excellent news for the country given that the travel categories in times of pandemic acquire greater importance,” said Minister Segura. “The United States is the main source market for tourists to Costa Rica and this change is crucial 19 days prior the entry by air to Costa Rica of all US citizens and residents – regardless of the state where they live and as long as they meet the entry requirements,” added the Minister
Segura added that he, along with the Minister of Foreign Relations (Chancellor), Rodolfo Solano, began negotiations with the United States Embassy in mid-September to have Costa Rica reclassified, taking into account the handling of the pandemic, the country’s health system, and the protocols that have been established for the operation of tourist activities on national soil.
Costa Rica enabled since September 1 the entry of citizens and residents of a predetermined group of States whose list has been expanding, including Florida, Georgia, and Texas as of today, October 15; and as of November 1, there will be no differentiation.
It is estimated that the reopening to the entire US will generate 80,000 jobs and US$ 1.5 billion in foreign currency by 2021, that is, 2.5 points of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to data projected by the Ministry of National Planning and Economic Policy calculated based on the Input-Output Matrix.