Visas to Enter Costa Rica

New immigration regulations state which foreigners require visas to enter the country and the length of their stay.

Friday, February 25, 2011

The Department of Immigration of Costa Rica issued on Jan. 14, Regulation DG-3312-2010, which details visitors of which countries require an entry visa and the duration of those visas, according to the nationality of the traveler.

Besides exceptions provided in the general guidelines, foreign nationals require a visa to enter Costa Rica, which is given by the staff of the Department of Immigration at the time of entering the country. In some cases, depending on the nationality of the person, it is also necessary clearance from the Department of Immigration requesting it before Costa Rican immigration officials abroad.

There are four groups of countries according to the duration of the visa granted to its citizens, and if it requires prior proceedings before entering the country. For example, people from Germany, Japan and Panama are in the first group, and will be allowed for 90 calendar days, while foreigners from El Salvador, Honduras and Venezuela belong to the Second Group, and are granted visa only for 30 calendar days. Nicaragua and Peru belong to the third group, which means they require a consular visa and have a maximum stay of 30 days. Finally, the People's Republic of China is in Group Four of which nationals must apply for a restricted and consulted visa and have a maximum stay of 30 days.

Read Resolution DG-3312-2010 (only in Spanish)

More on this topic

Inexplicable Obstacle to Tourism

August 2017

A new measure imposed by Nicaraguan immigration authorities requires foreigners who intend to enter the country to file a "notice of entry" seven days in advance.

The Nicaraguan business sector, particularly companies working in the tourism industry, regret the government's decision to implement this measure.

Dominican Republic and Honduras Eliminate Visas

July 2017

The agreement signed between governments abolishes the visa requirement for citizens of both countries who enter for tourism or business purposes for a term of up to 60 days.

From a statement issued by the government of Honduras:

Tegucigalpa. With the aim of promoting tourism and facilitating the movement of Honduran and Dominican citizens, the governments of Honduras and the Dominican Republic signed an agreement today establishing the abolition of visa requirements for their nationals in ordinary passports.  

Costa Rica Issues Migration Regulations

June 2012

The General Migration and Foreign Affairs Office issued new regulations and guidelines for entry visas.

A press release by Lexincorp Central America reads:

On May, 17th, the highly anticipated Alien Bylaws were finally issued as a complement to the General Migration and Foreign Affairs Law, which is in force since March, 10th 2010.

More Facilities for Foreign Tourists in Guatemala

March 2012

The Commission on Sustainable Tourism (Comiturs) has requested free entry for every tourist that has a U.S. visa in order to facilitate immigration procedures.

"We are trying to bring more tourism revenue into the country, by helping tourists come to Guatemala," said Alfonso Muralles, president of Comiturs, attached to the Guatemalan Association of Exporters (Agexport).

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