90-day maximum stay

stephen1779 asked 6 years ago

My wife and I are travelling to CR and will be staying for about 6-months or so; however, the maximum stay seems to be 90-days. How long do we have to leave the country for to reset the clock, so to speak. 

1 Answers
Jenn and Matt Staff answered 6 years ago

Hi Stephen, There’s no hard and fast rule about how long you need to be out of the country. If you bring a lot of goods back with you ($500 or more), there are customs rules about being out for 72 hours, but otherwise it just depends on the border agent. A lot of expats living in Costa Rica go to the neighboring borders in Panama and Nicaragua. Some of them have informal rules about how long you have to stay out before they’ll stamp you back in. At Paso Canoas in Panama, the Panama side won’t stamp you back in until you’ve been in the country for 5 hours. When we did the Penas Blancas border in Nicaragua about a year ago, we stayed out for a few hours, hung around the border, then came back. We prefer to take a mini-vacation if we can so that we don’t have to deal with waiting around at the border, as they’re usually not the nicest of places. Paso Canoas does have some decent shopping though if you need to buy things. Also, we crossed over via the small border at Rio Sereno near San Vito recently and recommend it. There’s more info here: https://www.twoweeksincostarica.com/rio-sereno-border/  

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