San Jose Airport Passenger Reviews and San Jose Airport Traveller Reports
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 14 May 2015 by Helen Devries (Costa Rica)|
Rating : 7/10
Check in and security very fast and efficient, but then you hit the overpriced shops and the limited and expensive
catering options. They should let the cafe outside arrivals take over a spot inside, they offer decent food at
good prices. The place is clean, the staff are pleasant and helpful, but it doesn't make up for the over priced
shops and the limited choice of food.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 26 February 2013 by C Harper (UK)|
Rating : 7/10
Used airport twice this month (Feb), other then being a bit short on eating places and those open were
expensive, passport check and luggage presented quickly.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 11 May 2012 by Andre Franca (Brazil)|
Rating : 8/10
SJO is a very modern airport, immigration is friendly but asks to see all your papers, come prepared if you do
not hold your tickets, carpeted floor, free wifi Internet, expensive gift shops and food carts, taxi fare is high,
20 usd for a 15 minutes drive, before checking in you must pay departure tax, it now costs 30 usd, you can
pay with credit card, overall good experience, I will be back in the summer.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 2 May 2012 by Carlos Moreira (Costa Rica)|
Rating : 7/10
Airport was quite easy to navigate. Exit tax is still $26 +$2 (fee for them to check your bags). I used my
credit card and it goes through as a cash advance. There is no longer a smoking lounge, if you want to
smoke you need to do it outside before you even enter the airport. As for restaurants, I hardly saw anything
in the main terminal.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 17 April 2011 by K Heady (USA)
Customer Rating : 3/5
I was horrified to discover that the restaurants consist only of U.S. fast food. Other than
coffee, and I am thankful to Cafe Britt for that, there is not a morsel of Costa Rican food
available in the airport, unless you include the Burger King typical breakfast. Not only that,
the food is poor quality and more expensive than it would be in the States. $29 for two small
sandwiches, a bowl of soup and two soft drinks is outrageous. There are several Costa Rican
food chains that would be better quality and give a much better impression of the country.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 7 March 2011 by R Thomas (UK)
Customer Rating : 5/5
Small modern clean airport with very efficient check-in and thorough, friendly, security
lines. Decent tourist/souvenir shop post security as well. Great views of runways and
adjacent mountains whilst waiting for flight. Food normal airport fare, but coffee good - as
it should be in Costa Rica!
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 14 December 2010 by Dana Sundmark (Canada)
Customer Rating : 4/5
It was well organized and fairly painless to get through. The one thing to avoid when you
arrive is the official money changing desk before you leave the terminal. It is a rip-off,
giving 10% less then everywhere else for USD. Taxis all take USD as well as colones.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT customer review : 12 July 2010 by A Schneider
Customer Rating : 3/5
When one leaves Costa Rica there is a $26 airport charge. If one pays by credit card the Costa
Rican government puts the charge in as a cash advance fee. When your credit card bank gets
that charge they then charge you a minimum cash advanced fee of $10. Don't use your credit
card to pay for the exit tax. It'll then cost you $36 to leave Costa Rica.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT review : 28 March
2010 : by B Scott
Customer Rating : 3/5
Be aware - after security, there is no place to change money. If you have more leftover
colones than you want to spend (which can be challenging to figure out, since ALL prices after
security are in dollars) you have to hope that you can get change from colones in dollars, as
a helpful person at Church's fried chicken did for me. There is also no bar after security,
making spending colones more of a challenge. Well, there is a bar, but it is in the smoking
lounge, which is in the basement and is unair conditioned, so unless you are a smoker who
likes to sweat, it's not really an option. All food options in the terminal are American.
It's clean and spacious (except for the construction area) and the farther you are from the
construction area, the better the A/C works. Some gates require a bus ride. Check-in seemed
chaotic, but was faster if you had done e-check-in with TACA. The security area was cramped
due to construction, but it moved quickly. As of 3/20/10, you can pay the departure tax in
colones or dollars - if you use a credit card, it is treated as a cash advance, so be careful.
You have to pay the departure tax before you check in - your migration form is on the back of
the receipt, and you need to fill that out before you check in. I liked the airport when I
arrived (although I couldn't find an ATM on the arrivals level - you may have to go upstairs)
but much less impressed on departure.
SAN JOSE AIRPORT review : 11 November 2008 : by J Dowden
Customer Rating : 4/5
For a smaller airport, we found it very efficient. One thing we enjoyed was a smoking lounge AFTER
you go through Security. Great place to kill a little time. The server there will go to the food
court for you and get you a sandwich. Lounge itself serves cold drinks and coffee. As smokers,
it's getting harder and harder to find a place to smoke. This seems a great idea to me. Wish all
airports had one.
San Jose Airport by J Ash
2 March 2008 Customer Rating :
I travel to Costa Rica once or twice a year for over 18 years and they do not let you bring on
beverages post initial security as they check your carry on manually in the jetway for liquids. I
think they need to allow passengers to purchase an additional water to take on as most flights I am
on are 5 hours. Otherwise just a small average airport.
San Jose Airport by Michelle Wright
2 March 2008 Customer Rating :
Do not pay the airport exit tax with a credit card! hen I got my credit card statement from Capital
One, I had a $5 transaction fee for paying the airport tax. Plus I had interest accruing from it.
The airport tax payment was considered a cash advance, not a purchase. I was surprised. I paid the
airport tax in Argentina with my Visa, from U.S. Bank, and the transaction was not considered as a
San Jose Airport by M Desjardins
7 December 2007 Customer Rating :
Just a tip re: the 26$ USD exit tax. It may be paid in advance at most hotels. With that in hand you
can skip the main line and get to check-in a lot faster. The airport is suffering majorly from
increased tourism and business travellers. Hopefully the new gates they are adding/repairing will
help alleviate the wait times. Our flight out (Dec 1, 2007) on Air Canada (AC999) was delayed by
various (given) reasons: not enough busses to get you to your plane, not enough security to escort
you to your plane, too many planes, etc. My best advice is don't get too worked up like some
passengers I saw, relax and enjoy your final few moments in beautiful Costa Rica.
San Jose Airport by J Neiman
19 January 2007 Customer Rating : n/a
The latest edition to the airport taxes in Costa Rica, not only include
a $26 USD exit tax per person, but also now is planned a $15 USD entry
tax per person. For a family of 4 visiting thats $164 USD. This extra
$15 is implemented to replace an existing 3% hotel tourism tax that
should be levied at hotels but inconsistently collected. Unlike the
hotel tourist tax, this new $15 USD tax is levied across tourists and
nationals - whether or not they intended on actually staying at a hotel.
San Jose Airport by Perry Merkel
9 January 2007
Yes, there is a $26 USD departure tax that must be paid before you
"check in", however you may pay with credit card. I found the airport
to be overall very clean and efficiently maintained. Plenty of fast
food type joints, but no other restaurant options. Nicely done shops,
offering "all things Costa Rican" and the usual duty-free stores, which
offered a very good selection of aged-rums (from Costa Rica, Nicaragua,
Guatemala, Cuba, etc). Samples were usually offered. American Airlines
does not have their own lounge, however one could get a day-pass to the
lounge downstairs for $20 USD.
Jose Airport by Roberto Gutierrez
Juan Santamaria International has come a long way since it first opened back in the 50's, which i
remember. Its been going threw another renovation phase and this is the first since the orginal
terminal was torn down and rebuilt. Alterra(the owner) is adding more waiting lounges and boarding
areas threw out the terminal, extending it. It is simple to navigate threw out the airport since
its one terminal and not as large as some of the American and European airports. Immigration lines
are short and custom officers moves really quickly. Taca/Lacsa basically owns the airport with the
most flights per day using SJO as a hub from North America to South America, other airlines has
daily flights to and from North America and Europe as Iberia(from Spain), Continental(from Houston
and Newark), American(from Miami), US airways(from Ft. Lauderdale and Charlston), Mexicana(from
Mexico), and Delta(from Atlanta). SJO food selection is ok realizing that you shouldnt be waiting
to long and i only wish that the Costa Rican government improve the expensive tax to leave the
country(even nationals have to pay which is outragous). Besides the expensive departure tax....SJO
is a welcoming airport(the best in Central America)with easy navigation around and great service. I
have always loved SJO airport since it opened in the mid 50's and its imporving every time i visit.
Jose Airport by G Erichsen
Although dark in places (except in the attractive new addition), SJO is a pleasant enough of an
airport to pass through in transit. The main drawback is that the food court is too small for the
number of people there during the periods that Lacsa/Taca is using the airport as its hub. The shops
have a reasonable selection of souvenirs at not-outrageous prices, but the food court (three
American-chain fast-food eateries) is overpriced even by airport standards. My main complaint about
this airport might not be of concern to many people, but I felt a bit disap-pointed that the airport
didn't have the feel of really being in Costa Rica. All prices were in dollars (not all that
surprising, really), and the restaurants had monolingual menus, the language not being Spanish. I
would have appreciated feeling a bit more like I was in Costa Rica for my brief stay rather than in
a Disneyland version of Costa Rica. OK, it was possible to buy gallo pinto (rice and beans) at the
Burger King for breakfast, but that was about the only thing different at the airport than what I
could have found at an airport in the United States. By the way, if you're traveling in transit,
there's no customs check at all, and no exit tax.
Jose Airport by J Davis
SJO is currently undergoing a enlargement due to the sudden increase of airport traffic and
there are plans for a business class lounge in the making. Immigration lines seem to be quite a wait
after 6 P.M. but earlier in the morning you can get threw immigration and customs in less than 45
minutes. The $26 departure tax is a pain when it should be included with the price of the ticket but
besides the $26 tax SJO is a pleasant airport to pass threw and is in better condition than its
rival airports threw out central america.
Jose Airport by Robert Sanchez
The airport has been under construction for years. You have to pay a $26 departure tax on top of
all the taxes that the Ticos have built into your ticket price. For all this money you get long
lines to pay the departure tax, long lines to check in (Delta says to get there three hours before
departure but their staff doesn't arrive until an hour and a half before departure), long lines at
the x-ray (only two!), no business class lounges, and inefficiency.
Jose Airport by Jeff Williams
There are two issues with this generally pleasant small airport currently being rebuilt. The first
is that at most times of the day it will take you a minimum of 1hr and often much more to get your
departure tax stamp (not usually too long), check in (can be long) and clear security (often queues
out into the car park) because of lots of flights departing at the same time early in the morning
with very few X-ray machines. Secondly, for business class travellers there is no lounge and I
don't know whether one is planned.
Jose Airport by Bill Maes
The airport seemed very efficient at my travel times in and out. I have made a point of not
traveling into SJO after 18:00, as it appears that every airline has scheduled a flight after that
point. I have witnessed very long lines curving the length of the arrival terminal and customs after
18:00. For the departure tax, I have purchased the stamp upon my arrival in SJO. This has saved the
headaches of waiting at departure.
Jose Airport by Tony Lai
SJO is a small airport. On arrival, going through passport control was a breeze.
Baggage claim was fairly quick. Took about 15 minutes. There is a no mans land area in which you
can hire a car or rent a car. Checking in for the return flight was a breeze. Security was very
efficient. Shopping options are decent for an airport of its size. My only gripe is the $26.00
departure tax. Most airport departure taxes are included in the price of the ticket. My gripe was
having to pay for the $26.00 departure tax prior to checking in. I wonder why it wasn't included in
the price of the ticket?
Jose Airport by Chris Smigliani
Returned to SJO last week for the first time since 1999. It has improved dramatically, taking the
top spot once again in Central America's airports (SAL had gained the spot for a while). The new
check-in area is fantastic, and Security is organized (was not the case before). The shopping has
improved (although prices at the Airport are considerably higher than everywhere except Multiplaza).
Arrivals, Immigration, Baggage Claim and Customs are also very well organized. Now if we could only
bring back the great Tico service that we had on the Costa Rican airline LACSA, and ditch horrible
Grupo TACA, we'd all find traveling to SJO a complete joy.
Jose Airport by Ronnie Gibson
SJO is a nice small airport with easy access between the terminal and gates. I fly to this airport
every year to see my family in Costa Rica. There is about 3 or so places to eat and a few duty free
shops. Immigration lines are long between 10:00-1:00 and expect to wait 45 minutes. Security lines
are always short though. The only problem i have is the $26.00/ 11,500 tax they charge to
leave Costa Rica.
Jose Airport by Norman Clark
One of the world's best small airports: clean, efficient, and thoughtfully laid out. What a great
welcome to Costa Rica!
Jose Airport by J Trevers
A nice welcome to Costa Rica, complete with relaxing waterfalls. Immigration was quick and customs
nearly non-existent. Annoyingly, everyone insists departing passengers arrive 3 hours before their
flights. This is entirely unnecessary. An hour and a half should be plenty. Security was a bit
slow, but efficient. Be sure to check out the souvenir shops with free samples of coffee and
chocolate covered coffee beans!
Jose Airport by T Chapman
Clean and modern airport. Rarely delays. Burger King, Church's Chicken and Papa John's are the
food selections. Plenty of souvenir shops. Gets a little crowded as arriving flights walk through
same terminal as departing flights. Immigration is slow. Peak times seem to be 1100 to 1400. Can
expect 30 to 45 minute wait at immigration. Customs requires you to XRay screen all bags. On
departure - $26 USD departure tax. If US citizen need passport to enter CR.
Jose Airport by Bill Hoffman
San Jose airport in Costa Rica is a small airport. Once you get off your flight, you are out of
there in twenty minutes. Immigration lines are short, and it is very easy to find transportation. It
took five minutes to get through security. The only complaint is there are only two or three places
to eat, and they are all more expensive (or so it seems) than other airports. There are only eight
gates, so you should not be confused.
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