Many students ask us about travel insurance, and we recommend that everyone do their own research to determine which travel insurance policies are right for you. It’s important to consider which countries you are traveling to, the length of your trip, activities you plan on doing and your country of origin. There are state-of-the-art private hospitals in Costa Rica (San José, Liberia) as well as public hospitals, 24-hour clinics, helicopter evacuation, private practices and pharmacies. For simple issues like bug bites, cuts, ear aches, UTIs, etc., usually the pharmacists can recommend treatment and it’s normally very affordable. For more serious illness or injuries, the private hospitals are best, but that can get expensive. Make sure the travel insurance plan you’re considering covers everything that’s important to you and before you travel, ask how to get in touch with them should you get sick or have an emergency. If you have personal experience with any travel insurance providers that are excellent or best avoided, please let us know and we’ll be sure to communicate that with future students. We don’t recommend any particular company, but these are a few links to get you started.
Medical attention near our schools:
Heredia is right next to the capital city of San José and is extremely close to large private hospitals such as the Clínica Bíblica, the Clínica Católica, and the CIMA. There are numerous pharmacies within blocks of our school and plenty of clinics and private practices right in downtown Heredia. Basically, you’d have quick access to anything you needed.
Sámara is equipped with two pharmacies, a doctor with a private practice in downtown Sámara and another in neighboring Carrillo. In nearby Nicoya (45 minutes driving) there is a large public hospital with an emergency room (and ambulance), many large pharmacies, a private clinic and a number of private practices. In Liberia (under 2 hour drive), the CIMA hospital has a location and there is another small modern private hospital called the Clínica San Rafael Arcángel. For extreme situations a helicopter evacuation to San José would be available and the best choice.
Injury while traveling is unlikely but a possibility and it’s good to travel prepared. Be sure to travel with all of your prescription medicine, bring plenty of sunscreen and bug spray and travel with a small first-aid kit. Don’t forget to pack any treatment for psychiatric conditions as well; anxiety, panic attacks, depression, bipolar disorder, etc. The most common ailments our students encounter are mild and avoidable, such as dehydration, sun burn, bug bites, blisters, and motion sickness (curvy roads). Remember to give us your emergency contact person/information so that we can inform a loved one in the unlikely event of an emergency. Intercultura staff will be here to help should you require any medical attention during your stay with us, just remember that we cannot cover your expenses so be sure to have access to enough cash or a credit card. If you have further questions about medical care in Costa Rica, please feel free to contact us.