Travel Budget for San Jose

Provincia de San Jose, Costa Rica

How much does it cost to travel to San Jose?

How much money will you need for your trip to San Jose? You should plan to spend around ₡37,643 ($58) per day on your vacation in San Jose, which is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors. Past travelers have spent, on average, ₡6,854 ($11) on meals for one day and ₡10,426 ($16) on local transportation. Also, the average hotel price in San Jose for a couple is ₡39,871 ($61). So, a trip to San Jose for two people for one week costs on average ₡527,000 ($811). 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
  • One Week Per person
  • 2 Weeks Per person
  • One Month Per person
  • One Week For a couple
  • 2 Weeks For a couple
  • One Month For a couple
This data comes from the travel budgets of real travelers - How it works. Put these numbers on your website.

A vacation to San Jose for one week usually costs around ₡263,500 for one person. So, a trip to San Jose for two people costs around ₡527,000 for one week. A trip for two weeks for two people costs ₡1,054,000 in San Jose. If you're traveling as a family of three or four people, the price 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 San Jose can often have a lower daily budget per person than one person traveling alone for one week.

How expensive is San Jose? How much money do I need for San Jose?

How much does a trip to San Jose cost? Is San Jose expensive? The average San Jose trip cost is broken down by category here. All of these San Jose prices are calculated from the budgets of real travelers.

Accommodation Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

The average price for one person for accommodation in San Jose is ₡19,936. For two people sharing a typical double-occupancy hotel room, the average price for a hotel room in San Jose is ₡39,871.

  • Accommodation1 Hotel or hostel for one person
  • Accommodation1 Typical double-occupancy room

Featured Properties

Hotels in San Jose

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

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Transportation Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The cost of a taxi ride in San Jose is significantly more than public transportation. On average, past travelers have spent ₡10,426 per person, per day, on local transportation in San Jose.

  • Transportation1 Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.

Featured Services

Flights to San Jose
How much does it cost to go to San Jose? Naturally, it depends on the dates. We recommend Kayak because they can find the best deals across all airlines.

Rental Cars in San Jose
The price of renting a car in San Jose will depends on dates, the type of car, the location, and your age. We recommend Kayak because they can find the best deals across all car rental companies.

What did other people spend on Transportation in San Jose?

Typical prices for Transportation in San Jose are listed below. These actual costs are from real travelers and can give you an idea of the prices in San Jose, but your costs will vary based on your travel style.

  • Taxi from SJO
  • Local Bus

Food Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • While meal prices in San Jose can vary, the average cost of food in San Jose is ₡6,854 per day. Based on the spending habits of previous travelers, when dining out an average meal in San Jose should cost around ₡2,742 per person. Breakfast prices are usually a little cheaper than lunch or dinner. The price of food in sit-down restaurants in San Jose is often higher than fast food prices or street food prices.

  • Food2 Meals for one day


Entertainment Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • Entertainment and activities in San Jose typically cost an average of ₡8,469 per person, per day. This includes fees paid for admission tickets to museums and attractions, day tours, and other sightseeing expenses.

  • Entertainment1 Entrance tickets, shows, etc.

Featured Activities

Tips and Handouts Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The average price for Tips and Handouts in San Jose is ₡16,039 per day. The usual amount for a tip in San Jose is 5% - 15%.

  • Tips and Handouts1 For guides or service providers

Alcohol Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • The average person spends about ₡6,699 on alcoholic beverages in San Jose per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.

  • Alcohol2 Drinks for one day


Water Budget in San Jose
Average Daily Costs

Calculated from travelers like you

  • On average, people spend ₡928 on bottled water in San Jose per day. The public water in San Jose is considered safe to drink.

  • Water2 Bottled water for one day

Last Updated: Jun 1, 2021
San Jose On a Budget
San Jose National Theatre of Costa Rica, San Jose
San Jose is the capital city of Costa Rica and is likely to be your first and last stop in a visit to the country. The city is situated in the Central Valley and is surrounded by beautiful mountains and valleys, making for a beautiful flight in. The city has an elevation of 1200 meters and sits on a plateau with a beautiful backdrop of lush green forest. Half of the people in Costa Rica reside in the country's capital city. You are likely to stay only a day or two, but there are a handful of things to do and see including museums and markets. You will also find many embassies, as well as the University of Costa Rica in San Jose.

San Jose is located in the Tropics within a tropical rainforest, but it's higher elevation gives it a mild climate. Technically, the climate is considered tropical wet and dry. The average highs are in the high 70s to low 80s Fahrenheit year around. The lows are typically in the mid 60s Fahrenheit. The rainy season is between May and mid-November, but the weather can be overcast even during the dry season.
There are a handful of museums throughout San Jose that are worth visiting if you have the time. These include the National Museum, the Gold Museum, the Jade Museum, the Children's Museum, and the Insect Museum at the Universidad de Costa Rica. Other nearby places to visit include the butterfly farm, the coffee farm, and La Paz Waterfall Gardens.

It is also possible to book a tour within San Jose, or organize a tour throughout all of Costa Rica.
San Jose is divided into 11 districts. These are Catedral, Carmen, Hatillo, Hospital, Uruca, Mata Redonda, Merced, Pavas, San Francisco de Dos Rios, San Sebastian, and Zapote. These districts can further be divided into specific neighborhoods, or barrios. The downtown area includes the districts of Catedral, Carmen, Hospital, and Merced. The Hospital and Merced districts are where you'll find the main commerical activity of the city. Catedral is named for the Cathedral and the Catholic Archdiocese of San Jose, which is located there.

If you have enough time, a great day trip from San Jose is a visit to Poas Volcano. The volcano is stunningly beautiful with an emerald green crater lake. Do make sure the weather is clear on the day you head to the volcano as a cloud cover will completely block your view. It's possible to catch a bus from San Jose to Poas at Parque La Merced. It leaves every day around 8:30 in the morning and it is easy to make a return trip the same day.

Other activities that you can enjoy around town include yoga classes, sporting events, and visits to hotel casinos where you can try your hand at gambling. If you happen to be in town on a Thursday, then head to the Parque Morazon where you can watch dozens of jugglers perform to percussion music. It's a fun local event and you may even be asked to join in.
Food and Dining
Like most places in Costa Rica, the most popular food around town is the national dish of gallo pinto. This is a mixture of fried rice and black beans and usually served with tortillas and sour cream. Casados is commonly available for lunch and dinner. This dish includes rice, beans, and meat, and is served with a cabbage and tomato salad, fried plantains, and tortillas.

If you're looking for a great place to grab a cheap and quick bite to eat, head over to Mercado Central. It's an old food market but you'll also find a handful of smaller restaurants. You can also pick up some fresh fish or other meats. There's a wide variety of local specialties including ceviche, corn based dishes, and cinnamon flavored ice cream.

San Jose is served by an international airport which offers connections to major airports in the U.S. and other convenient locations. This means that you can get in and out quickly. Therefore, San Jose makes a great hub for planning any of your Central America itineraries for the entire region.

The best way to travel around San Jose is by taxi. They are generally quite cheap and every taxi should have a meter. It is best to confirm that the driver is using their meter before you begin the trip.

Walking in San Jose may be hazardous as pedestrians don't typically have the right of way. Make sure you watch for fast moving cars and motorcycles when you cross busy streets.

There is a bus network that is run by several private bus companies. The network connects much of the city with the suburbs, and there is a bus service between Juan Santamaria International Airport and downtown as well.
Looking for a party hostel in Costa Rica or Cancun? Looking for a budget hostel in Mexico or Costa Rica?
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.

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