San Jose’s international airport is a central hub of the country, making it quite convenient to travel directly to most destinations. Whether you wish to visit historic sites, sandy beaches, lush rain-forests, impressive volcanoes, or misty cloud-forests you can do so with ease. With regular buses, shuttle services, taxis, rental cars, and even domestic flights, getting to and from San José International Airport is as simple as selecting which mode of transport best suits your preferences.
Where is San José International Airport?
San José International Airport is located 17 kilometers northwest of Costa Rica’s capital, San José.
Driving to/from San José International Airport
Almost anywhere in Costa Rica can be accessed by car, and it’s even easier if you are traveling directly from the airport. All major roads lead here, meaning that popular tourist destinations such as Monteverde Cloud Forest, Arenal Volcano, Central Valley, and beach resorts on both the Pacific and Caribbean coasts can be accessed in under 3 hours. Many visitors choose to spend their first and last days exploring the Costa Rican capital of San José. It’s a city of historic significance with myriad museums, colorful markets, parks and fine restaurants. San José is conveniently located just 30-minutes driving along Route 1 to and from the airport!
Bus to/from San José International Airport
It’s easy to reach the city of San José from the airport by bus. Tuasa Bus transports visitors to Parade Alajuela Bus Station on Avenida 2, just opposite Merced Park, in downtown San José. The journey takes approximately 35 minutes and costs the equivalent of $1.50 USD. Services run daily several times an hour. If you wish to continue to other areas of Costa Rica by bus, such as Jaco, Liberia, Limón, Manuel Antonio, Monteverde, and Nicoya, you can do so from nearby bus terminals in San José.
Hop on a Shuttle
One of the best ways to travel to and from San José International Airport is via a shared or private shuttle. Shared shuttles are a great way for solo travelers and couples to meet new people and travel safely. Alternatively, if you’re holidaying with family members or groups of friends, it may be more convenient and cost-effective to hire a private shuttle. These comfortable, air-conditioned buses offer English speaking drivers/tour guides for one single price for the vehicle, rather than a price per person. Drivers will meet you at the airport or your hotel for your return journey. Private shuttles operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and even cater to those with additional luggage, including surfboards!
Take a Taxi
If you’re just traveling between the capital city of San José, it’s easy to jump in a taxi. However, if you are venturing further, you should research reputable taxi companies in advance and agree on a price before your journey begins. Traveling by Uber can be more reliable for foreigners in Costa Rica, due to the fact that you know the size of the vehicle and price you will pay at the time of booking. Uber drivers can collect you from the airport arrivals lounge or your hotel at any time of day or night.
If you’re short on vacation time, touring Central America, or just wish to travel in style, SANSA Airways offers domestic flights to and from San José International Airport. This is a comfortable way to transfer while touring Costa Rica from above the clouds, flying over rain-forests, volcanoes, and breathtaking coastal regions. The airline offers flights to Liberia, Quepos (if you’re Manuel Antonio bound), Nosara, and Limón, for surprisingly reasonable prices.