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

June 25, 2022
4 min read
Rio Celeste waterfall, Tenorio volcano national park, Costa Rica
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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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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:

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  • 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.

Additional reporting by Caroline Tanner.

Featured image by Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
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TPG featured card

Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 10X points
10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day

Intro offer

75,000 bonus miles
Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

Annual Fee

$395

Recommended Credit

740-850
Excellent
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023
Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023