Costa Rica Travel Budget - Visit Costa Rica on a Budget or Travel in Style


How much does it cost to travel to Costa Rica?

You should plan to spend around $47 (₡23,924) per day on your vacation in Costa Rica. This is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors.

Past travelers have spent, on average for one day:

  • $10 (₡5,329) on meals
  • $9.51 (₡4,849) on local transportation
  • $47 (₡24,171) on hotels

A one week trip to Costa Rica for two people costs, on average, $657 (₡334,931). This includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

All of these average travel prices have been collected from other travelers to help you plan your own travel budget.

  • Average Daily Cost Per person, per day
    $47
    23,924
  • One Week Per person
    $329
    167,466
  • 2 Weeks Per person
    $657
    334,931
  • One Month Per person
    $1,408
    717,709
  • One Week For a couple
    $657
    334,931
  • 2 Weeks For a couple
    $1,314
    669,862
  • One Month For a couple
    $2,816
    1,435,419
This data comes from the travel budgets of real travelers - How it works. Put these numbers on your website.


How much does a one week, two week, or one month trip to Costa Rica cost?

A one week trip to Costa Rica usually costs around $329 (₡167,466) for one person and $657 (₡334,931) for two people. This includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

A two week trip to Costa Rica on average costs around $657 (₡334,931) for one person and $1,314 (₡669,862) for two people. This cost includes accommodation, food, local transportation, and sightseeing.

Please note, prices can vary based on your travel style, speed, and other variables. If you're traveling as a family of three or four people, the price per person often goes down because kid's tickets are cheaper and hotel rooms can be shared. If you travel slower over a longer period of time then your daily budget will also go down. Two people traveling together for one month in Costa Rica will often have a lower daily budget per person than one person traveling alone for one week.

A one month trip to Costa Rica on average costs around $1,408 (₡717,709) for one person and $2,816 (₡1,435,419) for two people. The more places you visit, the higher the daily price will become due to increased transportation costs.




How much do package tours cost in Costa Rica?

Organized tours are usually more expensive than independent travel, but offer convenience and peace of mind that your trip has been planned by a travel expert.

The average price for an organized tour package in Costa Rica is $222 per day. While every tour varies by total price, length, number of destinations, and quality, this is the daily average price based on our analysis of available guided tours.



Independent Travel

Traveling Independently has many benefits including affordabilty, freedom, flexibility, and the opportunity to control your own experiences.

All of the travel costs below are based on the experiences of other independent travelers.

Is Costa Rica expensive to visit?

Costa Rica is a moderately priced destination to visit. It's about average with most other countries for travel costs. The prices for food, accommodation, and transportation are all fairly reasonable.

Within Central America, Costa Rica is very expensive compared to the other countries. It is in the top 10% of countries in Central America for its travel costs. There are only a few countries as expensive or more expensive than Costa Rica in the region.

For more details, see Is Costa Rica Expensive?

How much money do I need for a trip to Costa Rica?

The average Costa Rica trip cost is broken down by category here for independent travelers. All of these Costa Rica travel prices are calculated from the budgets of real travelers.


Category Cost
Accommodation 1 (Double Occupancy) 24,171 ($47)
Local Transportation 1 4,849 ($9.51)
Food 2 5,329 ($10)
Entertainment 1 6,394 ($13)
Tips and Handouts 1 1,407 - 4,220 ($3 - 8)
Alcohol 2 1,356 - 4,067 ($3 - 8)
Accommodation Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

The average price paid for one person for accommodation in Costa Rica is $24 (₡12,086). For two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room, the average price paid for a hotel room in Costa Rica is $47 (₡24,171). This cost is from the reported spending of actual travelers.


  • Accommodation1 Hotel or hostel for one person
    $24
    12,086
  • Accommodation1 Typical double-occupancy room
    $47
    24,171

Hotel Prices in Costa Rica

Looking for a hotel in Costa Rica? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options.

Find the best hotel for your travel style.

 

Actual Hotel Prices
The average hotel room price in Costa Rica based on data provided by Kayak for actual hotel rooms is $115. (Prices in U.S. Dollars, before taxes & fees.)

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world.


Recommended Properties


Local Transportation Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The cost of a taxi ride in Costa Rica is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent $9.51 (₡4,849) per person, per day, on local transportation in Costa Rica.


  • Local Transportation1 Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    $9.51
    4,849

Recommended Services

What did other people spend on Local Transportation?

Typical prices for Local Transportation in Costa Rica are listed below. These actual costs are from real travelers and can give you an idea of the Local Transportation prices in Costa Rica, but your costs will vary based on your travel style and the place where the purchase was made.


  • Bike Rental
    12,543
  • Local Bus
    1,380
  • Taxi from SJO
    12,672


Food Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • While meal prices in Costa Rica can vary, the average cost of food in Costa Rica is $10 (₡5,329) per day. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out an average meal in Costa Rica should cost around $4.18 (₡2,132) per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in Costa Rica is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.


  • Food2 Meals for one day
    $10
    5,329

Recommended

What did other people spend on Food?

Typical prices for Food in Costa Rica are listed below. These actual costs are from real travelers and can give you an idea of the Food prices in Costa Rica, but your costs will vary based on your travel style and the place where the purchase was made.


  • Dinner at Finca Exotica
    27,276
  • Pizza
    1,850
  • Lunch
    4,000
  • Pasta Dinner (for 1)
    7,947
  • Smoothie
    1,500
  • Lunch
    6,990
  • Fruit Plate
    1,500
  • Breakfast Taco Bar
    1,695


Entertainment Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • Entertainment and activities in Costa Rica typically cost an average of $13 (₡6,394) per person, per day based on the spending of previous travelers. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.


  • Entertainment1 Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    $13
    6,394

Recommended Activities

What did other people spend on Entertainment?

Typical prices for Entertainment in Costa Rica are listed below. These actual costs are from real travelers and can give you an idea of the Entertainment prices in Costa Rica, but your costs will vary based on your travel style and the place where the purchase was made.


  • Bike Rental
    2,488
  • Yoga
    6,231
  • Massage
    22,486
  • Bike Rental
    4,982
  • Surf Lesson
    24,909
  • Tortuga Island Tour
    49,556
  • Dance Class
    4,982


Tips and Handouts Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The average cost for Tips and Handouts in Costa Rica is $5.52 (₡2,814) per day. The usual amount for a tip in Costa Rica is 5% - 15%.


  • Tips and Handouts1 For guides or service providers
    $5.52
    2,814


Alcohol Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The average person spends about $5.32 (₡2,711) on alcoholic beverages in Costa Rica per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.


  • Alcohol2 Drinks for one day
    $5.32
    2,711

Recommended

What did other people spend on Alcohol?

Typical prices for Alcohol in Costa Rica are listed below. These actual costs are from real travelers and can give you an idea of the Alcohol prices in Costa Rica, but your costs will vary based on your travel style and the place where the purchase was made.


  • Night at the Bar
    13,600
  • Wine
    7,433


Water Budget in Costa Rica
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • On average, people spend $1.28 (₡652) on bottled water in Costa Rica per day. The public water in Costa Rica is considered safe to drink.


  • Water2 Bottled water for one day
    $1.28
    652


Last Updated: Feb 5, 2024
Costa Rica on a Budget
Costa Rica Costa Rica
Costa Rica is one of the world's best ecotourism destinations. The country is famous for it's national parks which are as diverse as the country itself. Don't miss seeing an active volcano at Arenal or the beautiful green crater lake at Poas. Relax on the beach with monkeys at Manual Antonio and enjoy the Caribbean vibe in Cahuita. This is not a country you visit to experience city life. Most people fly into San Jose and then head out the next day. Costa Rica is all about wildlife, natural landscapes and the "pura vida." It's the place to come to experience a cloud forest or see hatching sea turtles. It's a place where you can see the tourism industry actively partnering with conservation groups to find a common interest in preserving the environment. Ecology is important throughout this country and it's truly a success story of what can be done to benefit both the economy and the environment in a resource rich country.

Costa Rica has been discovered by travelers from around the world, but that doesn't mean there aren't places left to be explored. Cheap flights into San Jose make the country a popular destination for Americans and Canadians alike. If you rent a car you'll have access to many places that most travelers don't reach. The popularity of Costa Rica also means that there are plenty of amenities for tourists in the form of cheap hotels, restaurants, and tour packages. There are also tourist buses that make the routes faster than the local buses, if you find yourself short on time. Because of it's small size and easy accessibility, it's possible to see a lot of the country in a short amount of time. Do consider your options though, as Costa Rica should be more than just a highlights tour.

Many people who visit this country make a point of spending time at both the beach and in the forest. There are many different beaches to choose from on both the Pacific and the Caribbean sides. To see the cloud forest, the most popular destination is to head to Monteverde. This is also a popular area for zip lining and adventure sports. On the coast you can enjoy any number of activities including surfing, kayaking, and deep sea fishing. While many people choose to make arrangements before they arrive in the country, it's very possible to organize everything once you arrive. This often proves to be the cheapest option as well.
At A Glance
  • This country has an excellent public transportation system. Buses are the easiest way to travel around and they reach most destinations. If you're hoping to get a little more off the beaten path then a rental car may be useful, but for most destinations, the buses are the way to go. They are generally reliable and comfortable and it's easy to purchase tickets. It's a perfect option for both seasoned and first time travelers.

  • Food in Costa Rica can get a little monotonous. Rice and beans are typically served at every meal. Meat is often well seasoned, but there are times when the flavor can be a little bland. If you're looking for the best dining experiences, head to the beach where you can enjoy fresh seafood that is prepared any number of ways. Although seafood dishes are typically a little more expensive, they are well worth it, particularly if you're a little burned out on the rice and beans.

  • Many people head to this country for the adventure sports. There is everything available to visitors from zip lining, to whitewater rafting, or surfing. You can take lessons in any number of activities. Participating in these activities can really enhance your trip and allow you to have a little more diversity in what you see and do.

  • Many people choose to visit either the Pacific or the Caribbean coastline. Both or very different and offer interesting experiences. If you're interested in snorkeling, then the Caribbean side has more to offer. It also has an interesting vibe that is very laid back and relaxed. For deep sea fishing or scenic beaches, the Pacific side is more appropriate. If you can fit both sides in, then definitely do, as they are very different places and offer unique perspectives on the country.

  • Many people do a highlights tour of Costa Rica. It's easy to visit for a couple of weeks and go to the same places that everyone else does. Instead, try to find at least one off the beaten path destination and add it to your itinerary. In the end, it's likely to be your favorite stop off.



Related:

Looking for a party hostel in Costa Rica or Cancun? Looking for a budget hostel in Mexico or Costa Rica?
Top Tourist Attractions
Costa Rican Wildlife: Head to any of the national parks to see some wildlife. Wildlife viewing is one of the most popular activities in the country and you can expect to see anything from quetzals, to monkeys or slothes. Many people head to Costa Rica specifically for the bird watching, but the rich biodiversity of the area will quickly turn any vacationer into a wildlife guru.

Poas Volcano: Just a short distance from San Jose, the crater lake in this volcano is a stunning emerald color. Many people choose to visit the volcano as a day trip from the city, but if you decide to stay the night you'll have the place to yourself in the early morning. Morning hours are also when you're most likely to catch a glimpse of the emerald water as cloud and fog often rolls in during the afternoon.

Arenal Volcano: Pictured on many Costa Rican postcards, you can only hope that you're lucky enough to see the volcano actively erupting. Even if you don't catch a glimpse of the lava flowing, the area around Arenal is a great place to visit. It has hot springs that are a favorite of many visitors to the country.

Popular Foods
Most people don't travel to Costa Rica for the food. It's very simple, but natural in flavor. Most dishes are made with rice and beans which are served with a meat option and a salad. On the coast you can enjoy any number of delicious seafood options, and fresh fruit is available throughout the country. The dishes are usually mild in flavor, but slow cooked to ensure that the herbs are well blended together.

Gallo pinto: This is one of the more popular rice and beans dishes. It is usually seasoned with cilantro and onion and it's most commonly served as a breakfast dish. It's a filling way to start out the day and you will find it on most restaurant menus throughout the country.

Casado: This is a popular lunch dish that usually combines rice, beans, and a meat such as chicken or fish. It is usually accompanied by a salad and fried plantain. It's a filling dish that is mild in flavor but, when seasoned correctly, can be very delicious. It is also widely available throughout the country.

Salsa Lizano: This is a condiment option that is available on most tables in restaurants throughout the country. It's really the Costa Rican answer to ketchup and is used to flavor almost every type of Costa Rican food. Try it once and you'll likely be hooked. It is not spicy, but does have strong flavor.

We've been gathering travel costs from tens of thousands of actual travelers since 2010, and we use the data to calculate average daily travel costs for destinations around the world. We also systematically analyze the prices of hotels, hostels, and tours from travel providers such as Kayak, HostelWorld, TourRadar, Viator, and others. This combination of expenses from actual travelers, combined with pricing data from major travel companies, gives us a uniqe insight into the overall cost of travel for thousands of cities in countries around the world. You can see more here: How it Works.



1 Categories averaged on a per-item basis.
2 Categories averaged on a per-day basis.
For example, the Food2 daily average is for all meals for an entire day, while Entertainment1 is for each individual purchase. Thus, the overall daily average cost is not a summation of the individual categories.