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No more visa extensions for visitors, Tourism Board confirms

June 1, 2021

The Costa Rica Tourism Board (ICT) confirmed Tuesday night that the country has stopped extending visitor visas beyond 90 days as of June 1, 2021.

“On this June 1, the extension of legal stay for foreigners who have entered the country as tourists as of December 17, 2019 expires,” the ICT said in a press release.

Costa Rica now returns to its pre-pandemic tourist visa policies: All tourists must leave the country by the time indicated by their passport visa stamp (i.e. within 90 days at a maximum).

Tourists who received a visa of fewer than 90 days can request an extension allowing for up to 90 total days in the country. That process is managed by the Immigration Administration; details are available here.

During the pandemic, Costa Rica on multiple occasions extended the length of time during which visitors could remain in the country. This grace period ends at a time when both international airports and all land border posts are open to tourists.

Visitors entering Costa Rica must acquire medical insurance that covers Covid-19 and quarantine expenses. A negative coronavirus test is not necessary to enter Costa Rica, though one is required for many other countries (including the United States).

Tourists who wish to enter Costa Rica must also have a return flight within 90 days or show proof of onward travel.

According to the ICT, more than 4,500 tourists took advantage of the latest visa extension grace period.

“The extension of their stay allowed them to continue enjoying our country and, for some, even telecommute from attractive tourist settings,” the ICT said.

Having an irregular immigration status carries various legal penalties that can include being banned from re-entry to Costa Rica.

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