Costa Rica: Tourists Prefer International Insurance

Since the borders were reopened and the country began to receive visitors, tourists have purchased more international policies, a situation that could be explained by the lower prices compared to insurance offered locally.

Monday, February 22, 2021

Data from the Costa Rican Ministry of Health show that between August 1, 2020 and February 11, 2021, 209,779 health insurance policies have been filed. Of the total number of policies, 54% are international, 34% from Sagicor and 12% from the National Insurance Institute (INS).

You may be interested in "Tourism and Travel: Consumer Interests and Preferences"

It is important to remember that tourists arriving in the country are required to have insurance to cover eventual events related to the pandemic that caused the covid-19 outbreak, such as medical treatments and the possibility of the country adopting a strict quarantine that would force them to extend their stay.

Price is apparently the factor that tips the balance in favor of international insurance. In an exercise carried out by Elfinancierocr.com, it was found that the cost of the policy for a 30-year-old traveler coming from France, amounts to $1.3 per day.

See "Central America: Evolution of the Insurance Market"

In the case of local options, they are more expensive. Ximena Valverde, general manager of Seguros Colectivos, explained that "... Sagicor has the 'Tourist Insurance' with an initial value of $11.3 per day and with a minimum of three days of travel. However, if the tourist stays more days or travels with their family, the insurance is more affordable."

In the case of INS insurance, for a tourist of 45 years old the cost of the policy is $9.4 per day, and for visitors between 71 and 80 years old the price rises to $18 per day.

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Between 2015 and 2019, the countries of the SICA region, the average growth rate of visitor arrivals was 4.9%, where only in 2019 there was a negative rate of -0.2%, highlights a document of the Secretariat for Central American Tourism Integration (SITCA) published in January 2021.

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As of October 1st, citizens and residents of Mexico may enter Costa Rican territory by air, under the condition that they comply with the sanitary requirements imposed by the authorities to contain the outbreak of covid-19.

As part of the process of reactivating air connectivity, Jamaican tourists will also be able to enter and the authorization for California residents will be reconfirmed.

Travel Insurance: Restrictions Lifted

August 2020

The executive decree was modified to allow tourists arriving in Costa Rica to present a policy taken out abroad as part of the requirements for reopening international tourism.

The Costa Rican government decided to reform Executive Decree 42513-MGP-S and now foreign visitors will no longer be required to take out National Insurance Institute (INS) policies, the price of which exceeds $275 for a two-week stay.

Tourist Attraction and Travel Costs

August 2020

Because Costa Rica requires foreign visitors to take out a local policy, which costs more than $275 for a two-week stay, tour operators are asking that insurance taken out abroad be accepted as an incentive for tourist arrivals.

After more than four months of the country's borders being closed to tourists, commercial flights resumed on Aug. 3 with the arrival of an Iberia plane carrying more than 200 passengers from Spain.

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