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6hr stopover at Costa Rica, enough for quick trip to city?

6hr stopover at Costa Rica, enough for quick trip to city?

Old Mar 8, 14, 11:24 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Somewhere Sunny
Programs: SPG Plat100, UA 1K, National Exec
Posts: 49
6hr stopover at Costa Rica, enough for quick trip to city?

Have 6hr stopover next Tuesday, is it enough to take a quick trip/lunch in the city? How long does it normally take to go through custom for US citizen? How's the traffic, how long does it take to the city/downtown.

Any suggestion to make good use of stopover? good place/restaurant near airport?

thanks a lot
williamx is offline  
Old Mar 9, 14, 7:55 am
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 72
You don't say what time but downtown could take well over an hour each way (or 20 minutes but then nothing would be open or be a safe time to visit). You may be underwhelmed by the downtown experience though it's ok for a quick visit to a few parks or museums.
ukdave0 is offline  
Old Mar 10, 14, 10:09 pm
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Chicago
Programs: AA, UA
Posts: 38
It will take an hour each way to get to and from the city to the airport, and can be as bad as 90 minutes each way with no warnings, even a single accident can shut down traffic for an hour or two, plus 30-45 minutes to get through customs on landing, and then 30-45 minutes more to get back in through security. So figure of your 6 hours, 3.5 or 4 of them are gone, leaving two hours at most to walk around downtown San Jose. There are a couple of museums, but with limited time you'll get to see one at best. It's got its nice points, San Jose, I myself like it, but most people, even natives, think downtown is a dump. If you must leave, you're better off taking a quick cab ride to the center of Alajuela which is 10 to 15 minutes away at most.
Darian is offline  
Old Mar 11, 14, 3:08 pm
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum
Posts: 1,565
Does "next Tuesday" mean today or Tuesday of next week?

"Capricious" is a good word to describe the airport. Lines entering and exiting Costa Rica can be horrendous or you can breeze right through. After 20 years of flying in and out of SJO, I've never been able to tie it to time of day, day of week, or season of the year. There's no rhyme nor reason to it.

SJO is quite far from downtown San Jose, and that's the part that concerns me about your plan. You could find yourself in a traffic jam and not make it back in time. I have a feeling you'd get downtown and think, "Oh." San Jose's main shopping street, Avenida Central, is hardly a stroll down Fifth Avenue.
SJOGuy is offline  

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