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Republic of Costa Rica > Details

Country Name
Republic of Costa Rica
Geographical Area
19,653 square miles
Population
4,586,353 (2011 census)
Capital City
San Jose
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People  
Language   The main language spoken in Costa Rica is Spanish, however English is widely used in all the popular tourist areas. In some of the indigenous reservations native languages are still spoken, as well as a form of Creole-English along the Caribbean coast.
Religion   Christianity is the predominant religion, and Roman Catholicism is the official state religion according to the 1949 Constitution, which at the same time guarantees freedom of religion.
Government   Unitary presidential constitutional republic
Head of Government   President Luis Guillermo Solis
Embassy   Calle 98, Via 104 Pavas San José, Costa Rica Telephone: +(506) 2519-2000 Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(506) 2220-3127
Visas   A valid American passport is required. U.S. citizens may enter for up to 90 days for tourist purposes without a visa, however visa requirements are subject to change. Check with the consulate before traveling. Visitors must pay a departure tax of 29 USD when leaving Costa Rica.
Health Risks   Costa Rica actively promotes medical tourism. While the perceived advantages are affordable costs, quality health care, and a chance to recuperate and have a vacation at the same time, there are also risks.
Clothing Suggestions  
Time Zone:   CTS (UTC-6)
Banking / Exchange   Foreign currency, including traveler’s checks, can be exchanged at banks and special exchange shops in large towns.
Currency   The local currency in Costa Rica is the colon (CRC). Though the US dollar is widely accepted throughout the country.
Electric Current   Metric
Credit Cards / Traveler Checks  
Shopping   Costa Rica is famous for its coffee production and varieties. Coffee is the best shopping deal in all of Costa Rica. You will also find several markets in downtown San Jose that sell Latin American crafts and clothes.
Weights & measures  
How to shop Tax Fee  
National Airport   San Jose SJO & SYQ, Liberia LIR, Limon LIO
Major Tourist Attractions   Touring the Arenal Volcano, surfing the relaxing beaches of Tamarindo, and hiking the Manuel Antonio
Tipping Suggestion   When dining out, it is customary to tip 10% at restaurants. Tipping taxi drivers is not expected, but most visitors will tip bar and hotel staff and guides.
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