Deal alert: Travel to Costa Rica this fall for as low as $218 round trip

Jun 25, 2022

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Starting this fall, you can trade autumn leaves for palm trees with this flight deal to Costa Rica.

Nestled between the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, this small coastal country offers stunning white sand beaches and incredible plant and animal biodiversity in its long stretches of rainforest. When you visit Costa Rica, you can hike up a volcano, marvel at gigantic waterfalls and say hello to a family of monkeys on the same day.

If you want in on this incredible vacation spot, your travel options just became a lot cheaper. Beginning in September, you can book round-trip flights to San Jose, Costa Rica, starting at just $218, nearly 60% off its normal price tag. (Yes, you read that right.)

Currently, round-trip flights for the summer to San Jose are priced between $400 and $700. However, they drop significantly in fall.

If you dream of unspoiled beaches, cascading waterfalls and crystal-clear waters, this deal is worth checking out.

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Overlooking Central Valley, San Jose, Costa Rica
Central Valley of San Jose, Costa Rica. (Photo by miroslav_1/Getty Images)

Deal basics

Airlines: American, Delta, Copa, JetBlue.
Routes: JFK/LAX/BOS/IAD/BWI/LGA/LAS/PHL/MCO/ATL and others to SJO.
How to book: Directly through the airline.
Travel dates: September-November 2022 and January-May 2023; exact availability depends on the specific route.
Book by: 1-2 days.

Props to Scott’s Cheap Flights for catching this fantastic deal. Scott’s Cheap Flights sends deals up to 90% off via its Premium membership, which users can try for free for 14 days and then $49 per year. You can also upgrade to the Elite tier for $199 per year and receive all the Premium deals plus premium economy, business-class and first-class alerts.

Sample flights

This deal includes flights from a variety of U.S. cities to Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO), some of which are nonstop, including from:

  • Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL), starting at $218.
  • Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), starting at $244.
  • Philadelphia International Airport (PHL)/Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY), starting at $274.
  • Orlando International Airport (MCO), starting at $290.
  • Newark International Airport (EWR), starting at $339.

To search this deal, head to Google Flights and enter your origin city and put SJO as your destination. For example, you could book a round-trip, nonstop flight from JFK to SJO in mid-October for $326 on JetBlue.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

Unless you can fit all your swimsuits, jungle gear and toiletries in a small stowaway bag, you’ll need to pay extra for baggage since the JetBlue flights are for the carrier’s Blue Basic fare, which only allows travelers to bring one personal item that can fit under the seat in front of them on board. Any full-size carry-on bag brought to the gate will need to be checked for $60.

(Screenshot from Google Flights)

There are also some great flight deals out of other cities, so be sure to explore options based on your home airport.

Maximize your purchase

Even though these round-trip tickets are cheap, you’ll still want to get the most out of your money.

As always, you’ll want to use a credit card that earns bonus points on airfare purchases, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (which gives you 5 points per dollar spent on airfare booked directly with the airline or through American Express Travel) or the American Express® Gold Card (which nets you 3 points per dollar spent on airfare when booked directly with the airline or through Amex Travel). You could also use the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (which gives you 2 points per dollar spent on travel). See this TPG post for more on maximizing airfare purchases.

Related: Welcome to the jungle: How I redeemed 100,000 Chase points to book a Costa Rica trip of a lifetime

Bottom line

If Costa Rica is on your bucket list, this fall is the perfect time to cross it off, with flights starting at a little more than $200 from select cities.

This deal offers the perks of a luxurious vacation at a reduced price and provides ease in traveling from major U.S. cities to Central America. If you decide to book one of these golden tickets, act fast.

Featured photo by Matteo Colombo/Getty Images.

Additional reporting by Caroline Tanner.

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