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car rentals from SJO airport

Chicago, Illinois
13 posts
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car rentals from SJO airport


I am traveling to CR for the first time with my teenage sons. We arrive late, 10:39 PM at SJO airport and are staying overnight at the Hampton Inn by the airport. We plan to rent a car to drive to Paos Volcano and then onto Arenal.

Can anyone explains the "ins an outs" to car rentals in CR? From the forums I have already looked at, it sounds like there is a airport fee you must pay when returning a car at the airport and some mandatory insurance coverage and also I think some sort of $1000 deposit the rental agency will put on your credit car but then remove upon return of the car? I just want to know how much the rental will really cost (versus rates posted on Kayak.com) and what to expect when I pickup my car and return it.

Thanks !


Grecia, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Province of Alajuela
Level Contributor
8,023 posts
43 reviews
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1. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

I would not do the car through Kayak. I like Kayak but it seems like the majority of "misunderstandings" regarding charges happen when booking through 3rd party sites. Book direct with the rental car companies here.

Your info is more or less spot on. You will need to put a $1000 deposit down on top of the rental itself. You need to make sure whatever price you are quoted includes the basic insurance required by law, this is one of the biggest issues from what I understand.

Companies themselves are hit or miss. I use Adobe a lot, they have a good rep overall and I have never had an issue with them. They are not the cheapest, not the most expensive, somewhere in the middle. There was an unhappy user of Adobe recently but as far as I know that was a pretty isolated incident. There is a lengthy forum thread about good companies and bad companies that's worth a read. More will chime in soon.


Chicago, Illinois
13 posts
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2. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

Thanks for the info!

Punta Uva, Costa...
Destination Expert
for Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Level Contributor
6,874 posts
10 reviews
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3. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

From Alajuela I have rented from Adobe, Poas, Doolar, and Mapache. I have been satisfied with all of them. They wil bring your car to the Hampton Inn or will pick you up and take you to their nearby office.

Destination Expert
for Playa Samara
Level Contributor
4,050 posts
80 reviews
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4. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

The following threads provide just about all the information you could ever need regarding car rentals in Costa Rica. They are well worth a read:







Cahuita, Costa Rica
Destination Expert
for Cahuita
Level Contributor
2,647 posts
32 reviews
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5. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

The threads are well worth reading - it can be a bit complicated to rent a car in Costa Rica and being informed can save you a headache and a hole in your vacation budget when you arrive.

6. Re: car rentals from SJO airport

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