Time Difference

Costa Rica observes Central Standard Time all year round, which is six hours behind GMT.

Money in Costa Rica

The national currency is the colon (divided into 100 centimos). US dollars are also commonly used in Costa Rica and prices are often quoted in USD. The best place to exchange foreign currency is in banks, such as Banco de Costa Rica and Banco Nacional, of which there are many in the major cities. Cards are widely accepted by merchants across Costa Rica. Generally, bank branches are open Monday to Friday from 09:00 to 15:00.

Electricity and Plugs

110 volts; American flat plugs, so make sure to pack an adapter.

Local Amenities

Most shops are open Monday to Saturday, from 09:00 to 18:00.


La Nacion, La Republica and La Prensa Libre are the major newspapers in Costa Rica. The Tico Times is in English, while local radio and television are also available.


Delivery time for mail to Europe is around one to two weeks.


To phone Costa Rica from the UK, add 00 506 to the front of the number you’re dialling (removing the first zero from the number). To call the UK from Costa Rica, use 00 44 before dialling the number (again, without the first zero).

Internet and Mobile Coverage

3G and 4G coverage is surprisingly good in the main cities and tourist areas, although it’s not so reliable in some of the very rural areas. Wi-Fi is also widely available, but again may not be in more remote regions. Mobile coverage is good overall, although you should check with your network operator before travelling to Costa Rica for exact details.



Our team will be able to provide the most up-to-date Costa Rica travel advice and information prior to your trip.

Contact one of our Costa Rica specialists