Common Travel Mistakes to Avoid for your Costa Rica Vacation
Getting psyched about your upcoming family beach vacation or girl’s getaway in Costa Rica? We understand how much goes into planning the perfect holiday, and how mishaps like hidden hotel charges and overbooked itineraries can ruin an otherwise fantastic trip. But, with a little preparation and advice from seasoned experts, you can avoid these common travel mistakes and enjoy a stress-free vacation in paradise.
Packing too much
Unless you’re flying business class, you probably want to rethink your wardrobe selection and packing strategies, as carry-on and checked baggage policies are becomingly increasingly strict, even on international flights. Stick with the basics, and remember that most forgotten items can be picked up locally. Also, if your plans entail any regional flights on Sansa or Nature Air, their weight limits top out at 50 pounds, so leave that third pair of shoes at home and stick with lightweight, quick-dry clothing that can be worn and washed several times during your journey.
Being stubborn with your travel dates
Travel website Kayak says that the best time for booking cheap tickets is 21 to 34 days before international flights, though others have found better deals when tickets are purchased at least 49 days in advance. Beyond booking your airfare early, your vacation budget can be stretched even further if you consider visiting between May and November – Costa Rica’s rainy season months. While you can expect some afternoon showers, you can also bet on 20 to 40 percent discounts off normal hotel and beach vacation rental rates, making this an option worth considering. Low season specials on accommodations put extra money in your pocket for other vacation splurges! Make sure to check out our discounts page for deals and last minute offers.
Overbooking your itinerary
We know how tempting it is to plan an action-packed itinerary, with jaunts to all the popular beach and mountain hotspots. The problem with this approach is that distances in Costa Rica are notoriously deceiving, and what looks like a quick two-hour jaunt on the map is really a half-day’s drive. The bottom line is that an over-packed itinerary leads to unnecessary stress. Instead, if you only have a week’s holiday, choose one or two destinations and make the most of them, rather than spending all your time in a car, bus or plane.
Spending your entire vacation in an all-inclusive resort
Honeymoons aside, Costa Rica has far too much to offer to be holed up in the confines of a five-star luxury resort. Indulge yourself with an upscale ocean view villa, but also take the time to explore the countryside, experience eco and nature tours and get to know the locals, who are some of the friendliest around. Try some of the country’s regional dishes and tasty street food – you won’t be disappointed! Your Costa Rican vacation will be that much richer, having discovered a little taste of the “pura vida”!