Travel & Ground Transportation, Tours and Destination
HOTEL: JW MARRIOTT GUANACASTE RESORT & SPA , Hacienda Pinilla, Guanacaste, Costa Rica, Phone: +506-26812000 | Fax: +506-26812020
AIR TRAVEL INFORMATION: The JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa is located in Guanacaste, in the northwest area of Costa Rica. You can fly into Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR – known as Liberia International Airport), which is an approximate 1-¼ hour drive to the hotel; however, lower fares can often be found by flying into Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO), located in Costa Rica’s capital city of San Jose, which is an approximate 4-5 hour drive to the hotel.
COVID-19 Update Feb. 2021
A brief update on Costa Rica regarding COVID-19, as things have been contained.
So far their hospitals have been handling positive cases that need special attention in reasonable amounts, and since last December 24th, they have started vaccination and have been following a scheme to cover their most sensitive population, in guidance with the plan drawn by our Government.
Their two international airports, in the capital of San José (SJO) and by our North Pacific coastal area in Liberia (LIR) are open; and commercial airlines are adding more routes from United States. It has been a slow start, but they are doing it safely with all health and sanitary protocols. They have not gotten any positive case from any of their visitors. The following requirements remain during the pandemic:
- Complete the digital form called HEALTH PASS and available at https://salud.go.cr
- This pass will be available 48 hours before boarding. It must be accessed in an updated browser (except for Internet Explorer).
An individual form must be completed for every person, including minors.
- Purchase health insurance
For the latest information on travel health and safety restrictions generally, please click here.
Special Airfare Discounts:
For Alaska Airlines, reservations and ticketing are available via alaskaair.com. When booking online, select “Use a Discount Code”, enter in meeting code TBD when prompted. Reservations may also be made by calling Alaska Airlines directly at 800-252-7522. *Please note there is a $15 per person ticket fee for booking through the reservation number above.
For Delta Airlines, Reservations and ticketing are available via delta.com. When booking online, select Book A Trip, click on Advanced Search and enter the meeting code: TBD on the Search Flights page. Reservations may also be made by calling Delta Meeting reservations at 800-328-1111
Mon-Fri. 7am-7pm CDT. *Please note that there is a direct ticketing fee for booking through the reservation number above.
For United Airlines and United Express, and United Codeshare airlines (Lufthansa Airlines, All Nippon Airways), visit united.com or call 1-800-426-1122 and use Code: ZJQB654733. US and Canada flights are 2-5% off discounted economy, business and first class, and 10% off full fare economy, business and first class. International flights are discounted by 5-10%.
PASSPORT REQUIREMENTS & IMMIGRATION
ALL PERSONS traveling by air between the United States and Costa Rica are required to present a valid passport to enter or re-enter the United States. We suggest you allow a minimum of two to three months to obtain or renew your passport. Generally, your passport cannot expire within 6 months after the date of your trip; however, each country varies, so check with your local passport agency to verify. For more information, please visit http://travel.state.gov.
Children must also have valid passports. Children traveling with an adult other than their parent or with only one parent must carry notarized written permission from any parent or guardian not traveling with the child to or from Costa Rica. This permission must include the name of the parent, the name of the child, the name of anyone traveling with the child, and the notarized signature(s) of the absent parent(s). The State Department recommends that the permission should include travel dates, destinations, airlines, and a brief summary of the circumstances surrounding the travel. The child must be carrying the original letter – not a facsimile or scanned copy – as well as proof of the parent/child relationship (usually a birth certificate or court document) – and an original custody decree, if applicable. If you have adopted children, please be sure to have your adoption papers with you.
If you live in the United States and are not a U.S. citizen, we recommend that you check with U.S. Immigration regarding your particular situation.
Upon your arrival in Costa Rica you will go through customs and immigration and upon your departure you will have to clear U.S. customs and immigration at your first point of entry back into the U.S.
DEPARTURE TAX : Your airline ticket(s) may already include a departure tax of $29 USD per person, as it is required when leaving Costa Rica. We suggest checking with your airline carrier to confirm. If it is not, this departure tax must be paid in cash when you arrive at the airport, prior to checking in for your flight. Please make sure to have $29 USD per person in cash with you prior to arriving at the airport.
GROUND TRANSPORTATION OPTIONS
Option 1 – Personalized Transportation: We have arranged with COSTA RICA DMC, our selected tour company in Costa Rica, to provide CME Science conference attendees with transportation to/from either airport. If you would like to reserve this personalized group ground transportation, please visit http://costaricadmc.com. They offer private and non-private transportation options.
Please note: If you are flying to/from the Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO), you will need to overnight there due to the long drive between the airport and resort.
Arrivals: Upon arrival and after clearing immigration, baggage claim and customs, please look for Costa Rica DMC, travel staff holding a sign with Your Full Name and a red balloon. Then you will be directed to your pre-assigned private transportation for the Hotel transfer.
Option #2 – Rental Car: You do not need advance reservations however, it is suggested due to limited availability during peak travel seasons. Alamo, Budget, Enterprise and National are at the terminal. AVIS Car rental is located at the hotel. CME Science has secured discounts with the following car rental companies: Avis: 1-800-331-1600 Reference this course and use AWD code: J906925. Book online HERE; Budget: 1-800-842-5628 Reference the course and use BCD code: U011183. Book online HERE; Enterprise and National: 1-800-RENT-A-CAR Reference the course and use code: L23J799.
Parking – Self a parking is complimentary; valet parking is $10.00/day
TOURS AND ACTIVITIES
We have arranged with COSTA RICA DMC, our selected tour company in Costa Rica, to provide CME Science conference attendees with tour options. To view tour information and to reserve, please visit http://costaricadmc.com.
Know before You Go! – Costa Rica – Land of Tico & Pura Vida…
Costa Rica is a crossroad, located between the Pacific and the Caribbean, Nicaragua, and Panama and between continents on the Central American isthmus. It is a convergence of lifestyles, wildlife, culture, pastimes and a promising future. Gourmet coffee plantations and rainforests flank an inland range active and dormant volcanoes whose slopes descend over miles to the rainforest lowlands to the east and west, endless savannah to the not fringed with beaches from border to border.
Costa Ricans who often call themselves “Ticos,” are generally fun to mingle with, quick to smile and many times go to great lengths to help out foreigners get the best of their vacation time, as you will hear them say… the country is Pura Vida!
Wildlife at its best! Over 25% of its territory is still virgin forest, laws provide waterways, beaches and mountains permanent protection. Costa Rica is the world’s most famous ecotourism destination.
Entry Requirements: Most foreigners, including U.S. and Canadian citizens and most Europeans need only to present a valid passport that will have 6 month validity. Costa Rica requires visas from a few countries, however, so check with the closest embassy.
Spring-like weather all year-round. Unlike temperate zones, Costa Rica has 2 seasons a Green Season from June to November and the Gold Season from December to May. Temperatures are dictated more by elevation and location than by season, ranging from tropical on the coastal plains to temperate in the interior highlands. Typically, mornings are sunny, with light showers in the afternoon during the Green Season, rain is rare during the Gold Season.
What to bring:
- Waterproof Jacket
- Insect Repellent
- Walking Closed Shoes
- Binoculars (optional)
- Beach/ hand Bag
Time Zone: Central Standard Time all year round, Costa Rica does NOT observe daylight saving.
Languages Spoken: Spanish is the official language, while English is widely spoken throughout the country.
Currency: monetary exchange is in Colones, but the American dollar is widely accepted. The rate of exchange is controlled by the Central Bank.
Electrical System: standard electricity in Costa Rica is the same as in the United States and Canada: 110 volts AC (60 cycles) and outlets are the same.
Name of the President: the actual President started office in May 2018; his name is Mr. Carlos Alvarado, a Sussex University Master Degree in Political Sciences & Development. Our First Lady is Claudia Dobles is an Architect & Urban Planner.
Water: tap water in Costa Rica is generally considered safe to drink; however, water quality varies widely outside of major cities. To ensure a comfortable trip, only bottled water should be consumed.
Phone Network: international mobile service is efficient and Costa Rica, make sure you activate the roaming service with your supplier. Internet service is widespread throughout the country. Wi-Fi wireless services are offered in every resort.
Credit Cards: most global credit cards are accepted throughout the country, your photo ID will be required in most transactions.
Travelers Checks: are not accepted in commercial establishments, neither banks.
Tipping: a 10% tip will automatically be added to your restaurant bill. You should check your bill carefully, especially before paying an extra tip. Tour guides and drivers expect tips.
Taxes: a 13% VAT tax is tacked on to hotel, restaurant and most service-industry bills.
Attire: visitors should wear clothing designed for tropical countries, made of cotton recommended for outdoor adventures and horseback riding. A light jacket is recommended for long bus rides or visiting volcanoes, as temperatures can drop as low as 50°F.
Hospitals: In San Jose 3 private hospitals and 4 public national hospitals within 30 minutes from the San Jose International Airport. There are 2 private clinic hospitals and 1 public national hospital within 30 minutes from the Liberia International Airport.