Last update: November 4th, 2020
Dear Students, Parents, and Volunteers,
November is upon us! Costa Rica is now allowing entry to residents of all 50 U.S. States! To allow for easier entry, the negative Covid test is no longer required to enter Costa Rica. Likewise, tourists now have even more options for purchasing the required travel insurance.
Nothing in our programming has been cut due to Covid-19 protocols. We’re still offering dance, cooking, and yoga classes as well as cultural and adventure tours! Masks and hand sanitizer are a must, but we’re in full operation and couldn’t be happier to host more students from around the world.
As always, see below for our step-by-step guide for entering Costa Rica. See information about entering the country, the safety protocol we are following at Tico Lingo and with our homestay families, the procedure in the event a student falls ill, as well as some helpful FAQ’s.
Who can enter Costa Rica?
Rules for entry:
Travel Insurance Tips:
Currently, there are two companies in Costa Rica that are approved to sell Covid insurance, INS (the government insurer) and Sagicor (a private company). You can buy the INS insurance in conjunction with the Health Pass by following the link provided in the form or by following this link. You can buy a policy from Sagicor directly through their website.
Sagicor’s rate is a flat daily rate, which usually makes it less expensive for shorter trips than INS.The INS rate is more variable based on your age, trip length, etc. We have heard from students and other tourists that it is usually cheaper for longer visits than Sagicor.
International insurance policies are also acceptable, provided they meet the minimum requirements. Specifically, the insurance must cover at least $50,000 for medical expenses associated with Covid-19 and $2,000 in accommodation expenses to cover at least 14 days of quarantine. You can find these requirements on the Tourism Institute (ICT)’s website.
• Trawick International
• Allianz Travel
Pease keep in mind that these insurance companies have not been pre-approved by the Costa Rican government. Tico Lingo can’t vouch for the companies
We highly recommend emailing ICT/the Tourism Board with your policy information in advance so that you don’t have any problems. Print the email response from ICT and bring a hard copy in case you need to show it at the airport.
ICT’s email is email@example.com
Our advice is that if the prices are similar, to just go with the Costa Rican insurance companies to make life easy. These are preapproved so all you will have to do is put in your policy number in the Health Pass, and won’t have to worry about getting approval of your policy and a QR code that will automatically allow for entry. If there is a big price difference, then it can be worth it to do the extra work for getting an international policy.
How Tico Lingo is keeping students safe:
• We are limiting our group classes to no more than four students per classroom.
• We are asking all staff and students to wash or disinfect their hands before and after class.
• Hand sanitizer is now available in every classroom.
• We have advised all homestay families to follow these guidelines in their homes and have encouraged them to ask us for help in the case they can’t find or afford additional disinfectants for their homes.
If symptoms worsen, notify Tico Lingo immediately. We will contact medical authorities and acquire the best information on how to proceed.
Students can opt to stay with their assigned homestay family. For this option, each student will receive 3 home cooked meals per day and will be given a strict set of rules to follow while living with their family. The cost for the 2-week quarantine is $450 and will be invoiced separately from their Spanish immersion program. This is done so students can claim the expense against their travel insurance.
Move into a private furnished apartment in Heredia. This option unfortunately does not include meals, but Tico Lingo will provide support with meal delivery as well as grocery delivery. The apartment is equipped with a full kitchen, internet, laundry, full size bed, television, as well as other amenities. The cost for a 2-week quarantine is $800 and, like the homestay option, will be invoiced separately so to aid in reimbursement by the travel insurance.