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Flights to Costa Rica overview
Going searches for the best fares and sends members deals bookable 1-12 months in advance. Going members save approximately 37% compared to normal flight prices to Costa Rica.
Cheapest Going deal
Average price roundtrip
Average Going deal price roundtrip
Best month to fly
Going found the most deals with travel dates in January.
Worst month to fly
Going found the least deals with travel dates in July.
Top tips for finding a cheap flight to Costa Rica
Book in the Goldilocks Window
We have a few tried and true tips for finding cheap flights, and booking within the Goldilocks Window is one of them. The Goldilocks Window is the period that’s not too far away but not too close to your desired departure date. That just-right time is 1-3 months before a domestic flight and 2-8 months before an international flight. If you plan to visit Costa Rica during a busy period or you don’t have flexible travel dates, start planning farther out.
January is a very popular time to visit Costa Rica. So if you hope to visit then, start looking for flights around July. It can seem far away, but it beats seeing price increases. In fact, last-minute flight deals are few and far between during high season, and fares usually increase 21 days, 14 days, and 7 days before flights. So start looking early if you can.
Use the Greek Islands Trick
Even if you’re checking fares everyday months ahead of a flight, some routes never get any cheaper, especially during high season. In this case, try our Greek Islands Trick. That’s when you try to get as close to your destination as you can, then find a budget flight between there and your final destination. As you can imagine, it’s popular with the Greek Islands, but it can be used for all sorts of destinations.
If you’re not seeing any flight deals to Costa Rica, try looking for cheap flights to Miami instead. From there, look for a short, budget flight to Costa Rica. Additionally, if your final destination is a smaller airport in Costa Rica, like Nosara Beach, it may be a lot cheaper to book a ticket to San Jose and then book a cheap domestic flight (or take a car or bus) to get to your utlimate destination.
Search alternative departure airports
We see great deals from all sorts of airports every day, not only big airports like you might expect. If flights from your home airport are expensive, try searching alternative departure airports. If you live in Baton Rouge, for example, you’re probably used to looking for flights out of New Orleans. But what about Houston? Sure, it’s a 4-hour drive, but if you see a fare like a $125 roundtrip deal to Costa Rica, it could be worth it.
Fly when it’s cheaper
December–April is the busiest time to travel to Costa Rica, but the temperatures don’t fluctuate that much, and from June-August you can find amazing deals. It’s rainy season, but the temperatures are warm and the rain usually only lasts for a couple of hours in the afternoon, the perfect time to nap after a long morning of hiking in the rainforest.
Shoulder season, the period between high and low season, is also a great time to travel. For most of Costa Rica that’s October and November, or late April through May. If you’re set on a warm weather escape in February, there are still ways to find deals if you can be flexible. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays are usually the least expensive days to fly, for example. And if you can avoid traveling on Fridays or Sundays, the most expensive days to fly, you’ll likely find a cheaper flight.
Set alerts for specific trips
Take it from us: Tracking fluctuating airfare is hard work! Luckily, technology can take the work off your hands. Set a fare alert for your Mexico itinerary, and you’ll get emails when fares drop into your price range or by a significant amount. If your dates are flexible, set a few alerts. And if you live near or can get to more than one airport, set alerts for all of them. Or, sign up for Going and we’ll monitor all flights from your home airport(s) and let you know when we find the best deals. Take these steps ahead of the Goldilocks Window we talked about to make sure you’re getting the best deals.
San Jose and Liberia are both well-served from the US, with more than a dozen cities offering direct flights to each. If you live on the East Coast, near Chicago, near Austin or Dallas, or near San Francisco or LA, you can likely reach Costa Rica directly. Elsewhere in the country, you can reach Costa Rica with just one stop.
Frequently asked questions about flying to Costa Rica
When is high season in Costa Rica?
Peak tourist season in Costa Rica runs from December to April, due to dry weather and because much of the US is cold and people want a warm escape. The first two weeks of January are especially busy.
When is the best time to visit Costa Rica?
Dry season, which is also high season, is a popular time to visit for a reason. From December–April weather in much of the country is warm and dry. But for a small country, Costa Rica’s weather has a lot of variation depending on where you are.
The Pacific side of the country and the central mountains are driest from December–April. But on the Caribbean side, on the east of the country, weather is pretty warm year-round. This side also has more rain year-round, except for in September and October. So, if you plan to visit the Caribbean side of Costa Rica, early fall is a great time to visit. May-November is the rainy season in much of the country, but Costa Ricans call it the “green season.” If you travel during these months you might get afternoon showers, but you’ll also get better deals and see the foliage at its lushest.
How many airports are there in Costa Rica?
There are about 30 airports in Costa Rica but only two international airports. Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) is in the capital San Jose and where most tourists enter the country. Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR) in Liberia is another option.
Which city in Costa Rica is the easiest to get to?
San Jose and Liberia are both easy to reach from the US. There are direct flights to San Jose from Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and Newark. You can get directly to Liberia from Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Dallas, Denver, Houston, LA, Miami, Minneapolis, Newark, New York, Orlando, and San Francisco. Toronto, Calgary, and Montreal also offer direct flights to Costa Rica. In Europe, London, Paris, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, and Madrid have direct flights.
If you plan to visit the Guanacaste region, Liberia is closer. But other areas like the Arenal Volcano, Monteverde, and Nicoya Peninsula are about equally easy to reach from either airport.
Which city in Costa Rica is the shortest flight from the US?
Costa Rica is a pretty small country, so whether you’re flying to San Jose or Liberia the flight time is about the same. The shortest flight from the US is from Miami and takes about 3 hours.
Which city in Costa Rica has the most direct flights from the US?
San Jose and Liberia have about the same number of direct flights from the US. There are 13 nonstop flights to San Jose and 16 to Liberia.
What are the rules for traveling with pets to Costa Rica?
US travelers vacationing with their pets must obtain an import permit from Costa Rica, as well as a health certificate from a USDA accredited veterinarian. Like most countries, Costa Rica requires that your pet has its rabies vaccinations, as well as other vaccines. Within 15 days of travel your pet will need a parasite treament.
How long is the flight to Costa Rica?
The flight to Costa Rica depends on where in the US you’re coming from. Flights from the Northeast and Midwest take about 5 hours. From Atlanta they take 4 hours, and from Texas they take 3-4 depending on your departure city. From the West Coast, flights are around 6 hours.
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* Prices are per person and include all taxes & fees in USD. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing, however, prices are not guaranteed, as airline pricing can change by the minute. Average Going fares are based on average prices of deals found by Going.