With two major international airports now serving Costa Rica, cheap flights to and from the Central American nation are getting easier and easier to find.
For the rest of the country, San Jose’s Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in the nearby district of Alajuela, serves as the hub and has flights or transfers to flights to the regional airport, for anywhere else in the country.
If heading to the beaches in Guanacaste or Papagayo, Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR) in Liberia is your best option and is just a short car or bus ride from the sun and sand. The rapidly expanding airport has added and keeps adding new terminals and runaways and soon it will be the hub airport for the tens of thousands of North Americans that have bought property on the Pacific coast.
Tobías Bolaños International Airport in San Jose is the hub of most regional flights in Costa Rica and has some flights to Panama and Nicaragua. Paradise Air, Nature Air, and other airlines with small regional jets have their hub here for short, cheap flights all over Costa Rica.
Costa Rica Airport Tax
All passengers departing Costa Rica by air must pay a $26 departure tax.
Latin American Airlines that fly to Costa Rica
Taca/Lacsa – Taca is Costa Rica’s leading air carrier and is based out ofJuan Santamaria International airport in San Jose. They have flights across Central America; to Lima, Peru, Chile, and Brazil in South America; and to Miami and other locations in the United States.
Cubana – Direct flights to Havana, Cuba with connecting flights around the Caribbean.
Mexicana – Direct flights to Mexico City with connecting flights to Cancun and across Mexico.
LAN airlines – LAN has the most flights to and from South America and with the moist locations in South America, however, they are rarely the cheapest option.
Copa Airlines – The Panamanian air carrier Copa has direct service between San Jose and Panama City, and many destinations throughout Central America. Connecting flights in Panama City can fly to Houston, Texas with Continental.
Air Panama – Flights to Bocas del Toro and David, Panama
North American Airlines that fly to Costa Rica
Spirit airlines – Spirit recently launched service between San Jose’s Juan Santamaria airport and Ft. Lauderdale with unbelievably cheap fares. Some lucky passengers have been able to take advantage of sales and have landed tickets for less than $80 roundtrip.
United – Has seasonal service between Liberia andChicago O’Hare.
American West/US Airways – Flies direct to Charlotte and Philadelphia
Air Canada – Direct flights to Toronto, Canada
American Airlines – American flies direct to Miami, Dallas, Ft. Lauderdale, Los Angeles, and has connecting flights across the United States.
Delta – Delta airlines recently added a second daily flight between San Jose and Liberia airports and their hub in Atlanta and JFK in New York.
Continental – Continental flies direct to Houston and Newark from San Jose and Liberia. You can sometimes find a lower rate if you travel with Copa Airlines on Continental planes, although a stop in Panama City is likely.
European Airlines that fly to Costa Rica
KLM – KLM launched a direct service between San Jose and Amsterdam, Holland.
British Airways – Flights may stop in the US, however, also fly direct to London from San Jose.
First Choice Airways – Flies direct between Liberia and London Gatwick International Airport.
Air Comet, Iberia – Offers flights between San Jose and Madrid, Spain