The Short Stay Visa or Estancias: What are these and how can I obtain them?

by Quatro Legal Immigration Team | Jan. 2, 2024 | Article, Immigration

This type of Visa is for business travelers coming to Costa Rica to carry out work related activities such as: Participation in business meetings or discussions, Conducting sales calls to potential clients, contingent upon the visiting employee representing a commercial entity located outside the host country, Attendance at seminars or “fact-finding” meetings, Participation in training sessions, etc. for up to 1 year in Costa Rica.

If the assignment duration is less than the allowed period of stay, this is 30, 90 or 180 days (depending on your citizenship), andx you will be engaging in work-related activities without receiving a salary in Costa Rica, we can process of a Short Stay Visa.

The Short Stay Visa applys for foreign nationals that will be performing one of the following activities for up to 1 year in Costa Rica:

  • Those of special significance in scientific, professional, religious, cultural, sport, economic, or political fields invited by State members, public or private institutes, or colleges.
  • Business agents, traveling agents, or commercial delegates entering for matters related to the activities of the represented companies or societies, provided they do not earn salaries or honorariums while in the country and do not require residence in the national territory for their activities.
  • Reporters, cameramen, and other communication and entertainment personnel entering to fulfill their functions without earning a salary in the country.
  • Individuals requiring special medical treatment in a recognized hospital.

The application process for Short Stay Visa involves two steps: First, foreign nationals must seek admission to Costa Rica. Nationals of certain states may need to obtain a tourist visa (visa de turista) before entry, while others may be exempt from this requirement. Secondly, after admission to Costa Rica, all foreign nationals qualifying under the permanency category should apply for a Short Stay Visa (visa de estancia).

Generally, the requirements for an Estancia visa may include:

– Application Form: Complete the visa application form.

– Passport: valid passport with a minimum validity period of at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in Costa Rica, and entry stamp to Costa Rica in the applicant passport.

Passport-Sized Photos: Include recent passport-sized photos that meet the specified criteria.

Proof of Financial Means: Demonstrate that you have sufficient financial means to cover your stay in Costa Rica. This may include bank statements, proof of employment, or other financial documentation.

Travel Itinerary: Present a detailed travel itinerary, including your planned activities and accommodations during your stay in Costa Rica.

Proof of Return or Onward Travel: Show evidence of your intention to leave Costa Rica before the expiration of your authorized stay, such as a return flight ticket or itinerary.

Purpose of Stay: Clearly state the purpose of your stay in Costa Rica and provide any necessary supporting documents. For the Short Stay Visa, this could include invitations from Costa Rican organizations, information about meetings or conferences, or other relevant documentation.

Certificate of Good Conduct: Some applicants may be required to provide a certificate of good conduct or police clearance from their home country.

Health Insurance: It may be necessary to have health insurance coverage for the duration of your stay in Costa Rica.

Short Stay Visa Fees: Pay the required visa application fees. Fees can vary depending on nationality and the type of visa.

Always check with your Quatro Legal immigration expert for the most up-to-date and accurate information before applying for an Estancia visa. Please fill out the courtesy e-meeting form at the bottom. We will be glad to assist you!

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