Costa Rica Reopens for Americans But For Some

As the pandemic started many countries were closing their borders and putting quarantine restrictions. However, due to travel restrictions, many travel plans were at a halt and the travel industry was in chaos.

But as the coronavirus cases started to drop the world started to travel. Hoping to salvage some of the tourist seasons, Europe, for instance, reopened to Europeans and those from select countries. 

US Citizens Banned

But the US citizens were banned from entering Europe and many other countries were not allowing US citizens as coronavirus cases were increasing.

It is the European Union that had banned the Americans to visit their countries as the coronavirus cases spike in the US

The EU was planning to review the ban every two weeks. This is only to make sure that the countries can be updated in the list. However, the Americans are not very keen as they are the ones out of the equation. Consequently, this could lead to a summer of disappointment for many Americans. However, the exception is for diplomats and healthcare workers.

Costa Rica, however, is coming up with a new travel policy that aims to recover its tourism economy. And welcome Americans back—just not all of them. 

The Reopening

Costa Rican tourism offices revealed last month that it was opening its borders to select U.S. states. As of Sept. 1, the first eight states (and Washington, D.C.) were Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Maryland, and Virginia. On Sept. 15, Colorado, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania will join the list.

However, it is reopening in order to restore Costa Rica’s tourism economy. It contributes about 8.2 percent of the country’s GDP, generating 211,000 jobs that make up 8.8 percent of employment, according to Tourism Minister Gustavo Segura.

“Costa Rica’s tourism industry is essential to the country’s economic growth and development,” Segura said. “In 2019, more than 3.14 million international travelers visited the country, of which more than 1.3 million were U.S. travelers.”

By letting some states in, the Costa Ricans are hoping to find some balance during what everyone can’t help but now call “these unprecedented times.”

However, the list of U.S. states will keep on changing depending on the numbers increase and decrease in cases. The current list of states have “an epidemiological condition with similar or lower levels of contagion than those of Costa Rica,” said Tourism Minister Segura. Americans have to supply proof of residency for their state to enter. It can be either a driver’s license or state ID. Whereas, children are exempted from this rule.

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