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FAQ about a trip to Costa Rica Costa Rica FAQ

What does the problem currently look like with Corona?

Unfortunately, our beautiful Costa Rica was not spared from the Corona pandemic, but that has been forgotten and there are no longer any restrictions. Everyone can travel normally. Like in the old days.

What currency do you use in Costa Rica?

The official currency in Costa Rica is the Colón (CRC), the current rate can be seen at the link below. You shouldn't change money at the airport, as you only get very poor exchange rates there. The best solution is the ATM, where you can withdraw both US$ and CR colones.

Should I exchange money at the San Jose airport or at home? Living and traveling in Costa Rica

Here you can find the current exchange rate for the colon .

Although US$ and CRC are both accepted everywhere (at least in theory), you should always carry both currencies (US$ and Costa Rican colones) with you. All things related to tourism are priced in US$ - this includes plane and bus tickets, transfers, hotels, tours and, for example, entrance fees to national parks. But interestingly, you also pay for a car or house in US$, and of course the legal fees are also paid in the same way. You should also pay for these services in US$, otherwise you will always pay a little more.

Everything else in the country - supermarkets, gas stations, most restaurants, sodas and bars - you generally pay in colones. Here you should also pay in colones, as the exchange rates are often not 100% correct and you end up paying a little more.

Euros can be exchanged in most banks, but at relatively poor rates. It is advisable to use the ATMs, as you can usually get the best rate there. You can get dollars or colons at the ATM, depending on your preference.
Exchange offices (e.g. at the airport) usually give the worst rate, so we recommend paying in dollars until you have the opportunity to change at a bank or withdraw colones from an ATM.

How do I use an Automated Teller Machine (ATM)?

To withdraw money from an ATM in Costa Rica, you have to keep a few things in mind. As a rule, all credit cards that come with a PIN number work in Costa Rica to withdraw money from ATMs. You can usually choose whether you want US$ or Colones.
Many banks charge a certain amount for each debit, and many financial institutions in your home country also charge fees for each withdrawal.
Unfortunately, the ATMs of the state banks (Banco Nacional and Banco de Costa Rica) have very small limits per withdrawal (usually there is only the equivalent of around US$ 100), and they often only offer colones. Therefore, you should use the ATMs of private banks; Our customers have had the best experiences with Scotiabank, Davivienda and BAC San José, all banks that are only found in larger cities or in the Central Valley. So it makes sense to stock up on enough cash at the start of your trip.
No fees were charged at BAC until August 2021, so you could collect money from the ATMs on site at no cost. The nearest one is in the Fresh Market at the Red Cross. The ATMs of this bank offer the following special features. You insert the card into the machine and immediately take it out again. Then you have to insert it again straight away, only now is the card held by the machine and you can start the transaction. First you enter the secret number (PIN), then you can choose the language. It is important when you are asked for the currency that you first enter the amount (usually you get up to $500 per withdrawal) and then the currency. If you first select the currency (US$ or CRC), the machine interprets this as 0 and the process is finished.

What voltage are electrical devices used in Costa Rica?

You need an adapter with 2 flat poles (like in the USA), or 2 flat poles with a 3rd round pole for grounding. The network here is operated with 110-120 volts at 60 Hz. Don't forget to reset it to 220V before you return so that the device is not damaged. At Posada Nena we also have some genuine European 220V sockets.

What time zone is in Costa Rica?

We are in the time zone GMT -6:00, Central America. There is no summer time. So depending on summer or winter time in Germany - 7 to 8 hours before.

Do I need a visa for Costa Rica?

Citizens of European countries do not need a visa to enter Costa Rica, just a passport valid for at least 6 months. You can spend a period of 3 months (90 days) in Costa Rica without a visa. If you want to stay longer, you can submit a special application to immigration or you can travel briefly to Panama or Nicaragua and then re-enter. If you have a different nationality, you should check with the responsible embassy before starting your journey.

Are there many activities near the posada?

Yes, there are dozens of full-day and half-day tours you can take. In San José, easily accessible by bus, there are many museums and cultural attractions that you can visit on your own. There is a lot of nature around Santa Ana, well suited for long hikes.

Is Santa Ana safe?

Yes, you should always be careful, but Santa Ana is statistically the safest city in Costa Rica.

What do I do if I forget something at home?

You can buy almost anything in one of the many surrounding shops. The best and largest shopping center is “Multiplaza” and “Automercado”, with many European and American brands - just 5 minutes by car from the hotel. We also keep some important travel items in the Posada.

How do I make a reservation at the Posada?

By email to info (at) or online under online reservation . Both can be done without providing credit card details.

Will I get a discount if I stay longer?

Yes. We offer a monthly rate with a 40% discount. But that's without breakfast.