Visa policy of Costa Rica

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Exit stamp
Entry and exit stamps.

The visa policy of Costa Rica requires that any foreign national wishing to enter Costa Rica must obtain a visa from one of the Costa Rican diplomatic missions, unless they hold a passport issued by one of the 95 eligible visa exempt countries or if the fulfill the requirements for a substitute visa. Costa Rican visas are documents issued by the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería, which is part of the Ministry of Interior and Police, with the stated goal of regulating and facilitating migratory flows.

Visa policy map[edit]

Visa policy of Costa Rica
  Costa Rica
  Visa not required
  Restricted visa

Visa exemption[edit]

Holders of passports of the following jurisdictions do not require a visa to visit Costa Rica:[1][2]

180 days 1

30 days 2 4

1 - Passport must be valid for at least one day on arrival.
2 - Passport must be valid for at least three months on arrival.
3 - Including overseas territories of Australia, Denmark, France, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, United Kingdom, United States.
4 - Extendable up to 90 days.

In addition, nationals of China who hold passports endorsed "for public affairs" do not require a visa to enter Costa Rica for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Visa is not required for holders of diplomatic or service/official passports of Barbados (30 days), China (30 days), Colombia, Cuba (30 days), Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Indonesia, Morocco (30 days), Singapore (180 days), Thailand and Vietnam for up to 90 days (unless otherwise stated).

Substitute visas[edit]

Nationals who would normally require visas may enter Costa Rica for a maximum of 90 days if they are holding a valid, multiple-entry visa or residence permit issued by the following countries. Residence permits and visas must be valid for more than six months on arrival.[1]

1 - for holders of residence permits only.
2 - Green Cards or U.S. visas must be valid for more than six months on arrival except for holders of B or D visas. Not applicable to holders of C1, C2, and C3 visas.

Further Authorization Required[edit]

A tourist visa for Costa Rica

Holders of passports of the following jurisdictions must have their visa approved by the Commission for Restricted Visas before arrival:[1]


Costa Rica also requires citizens of Azerbaijan, Cameroon, Cuba, Haiti, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Nicaragua, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Nicaragua to apply for transit visas before transiting through the country.[1]

Visitor statistics[edit]

Most visitors arriving to Costa Rica were from the following countries of nationality:[18]

Country 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013
 United States 1,199,241 1,233,277 1,077,044 997,262 929,402
 Nicaragua 429,990 440,049 446,870 463,959 476,678
 Canada 201,921 188,104 175,771 172,730 160,398
 Mexico 106,783 94,499 84,940 75,045 72,568
 Panama 104,795 99,917 97,135 68,340 98,275
 El Salvador 81,091 78,273 69,427 63,214 64,552
 Guatemala 78,032 65,063 57,600 55,677 56,756
 United Kingdom 76,173 71,392 47,499 39,545 35,198
 Germany 70,960 67,939 66,450 63,916 54,754
 France 69,803 61,503 54,773 49,681 39,728
 Spain 69,782 67,453 65,188 64,303 52,950
Total 2,959,869 2,925,128 2,660,257 2,526,817 2,427,941

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Alcance N°54 A La Gaceta N°57" (PDF) (in Spanish). Diario Oficial La Gaceta. 28 March 2023. pp. 37 to 52. Retrieved 18 September 2023.
  2. ^ "Alcance N°166 a La Gaceta N°159" (PDF) (in Spanish). Diario Oficial La Gaceta. 31 August 2023. pp. 61 to 62. Retrieved 18 September 2023.
  3. ^ "REPORT FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL on cases where visa waiver non-reciprocity is maintained by certain third countries in accordance with Article 1(5) of Council Regulation (EC) No 539/2001 listing the third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those whose nationals are exempt from that requirement, as amended by Regulation (EC) No 851/2005 as regards the reciprocity mechanism - COM(2006) 568 final". European Commission. 3 October 2006. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  4. ^ "THIRD REPORT FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL on certain third countries' maintenance of visa requirements in breach of the principle of reciprocity in accordance with Article 1(5) of Council Regulation (EC) No 539/2001 listing the third countries whose nationals must be in possession of visas when crossing the external borders and those whose nationals are exempt from that requirement, as amended by Regulation (EC) No 851/2005 as regards the reciprocity mechanism - COM(2007) 533 final". European Commission. 13 September 2007. Retrieved 11 December 2017.
  5. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during the month of January 1982" (PDF). 1983.
  6. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during December 1968" (PDF). 1969.
  7. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during November 1968" (PDF). 1969.
  8. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during November 1971" (PDF). 1972.
  9. ^ "PDF.js viewer". www.pravno-informacioni-sistem.rs. Retrieved 2 April 2018.
  10. ^ "一部査証及び査証料の相互免除に関する日本国政府とコスタ・リカ共和国政府との間の取極(口上書)" (PDF). Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan. 2 October 1974. Retrieved 14 February 2018.
  11. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during the month of December 1996" (PDF). 1997.
  12. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during the month of May 2005" (PDF). 2005.
  13. ^ pp. 25–26
  14. ^ "Statement of Treaties and International Agreements - Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during the month of June 2017" (PDF). 2017.
  15. ^ pp. 9–14
  16. ^ "Визы в Коста-Рику потребуются с 1 февраля". 22 January 2008.
  17. ^ "Costa Rica, Honduras impose reciprocal visa requirements after Costa Rican 'safety' concerns". Reuters. Retrieved 9 October 2023.
  18. ^ "Informes Estadísticos - Anuarios" (in Spanish). Instituto Costarricense de Turismo. Retrieved 11 December 2017.