Few trips are more exciting than a tropical holiday vacation. Costa Rica’s bustling rainforest and beautiful beaches are the perfect place to reconnect with loved ones, escape the cold, and ring in the New Year. It is important to remember, though, that the most wonderful time of the year is also the busiest. Planning a holiday vacation is more difficult than some people realize, so you’ll need to develop the right plan of attack. Read our Experts’ insider holiday travel tips and make your Costa Rica holiday trip the vacation of your dreams.
The Early Bird Gets the Best Hotel.
The biggest challenge in planning a holiday vacation is availability. Even if you think you are getting a head start it can be tricky to find the accommodation and airfare that you want. Our Experts recommend booking your air and hotels 10-12 months in advance. Booking during this time will give you first pick of the best airfares and hotel rooms. You might be able to get away with planning your trip 2 months out any other time of the year, but waiting until the last minute means that you’ll pay a hefty premium for your plane ticket… that is, if you can find somewhere to stay.
Flexibility is Key.
Holiday travel is a different game. The more flexible you are, the better your chances of winning. It is best to go into the planning process with a loose idea of the things you want to do and see, rather than committing to a set-in-stone itinerary that is planned down to the minute. Take some time to pinpoint the major goals of your trip. Instead of “beachfront suite with a pink and yellow private Jacuzzi where Janine stayed in 2008 on her snorkeling trip” try starting with “snorkeling at the beach.” Defining your general priorities will keep the important experiences at the helm of your planning so you don’t get caught up on petty details. It will open up your options and you’ll have a better chance at creating a unique experience.
Protect Your Investment.
The Experts recommend travel insurance for every trip, but especially over the holidays when weather delays and other kinks are more likely to arise. Travel is an investment worth protecting!
Add a Private Tour.
Sometimes holiday trips can feel more like a party than a private escape. Take some time away from the hustle and bustle by opting for a private tour. This will get you one-on-one time with your guide, the best chance at spotting wildlife, and a moment of tranquility in paradise.
Make a Reservation.
Even if you are a guest at the hotel it is wise to make a dinner reservation upon check-in. If you want to eat at a local restaurant, ask your hotel concierge for assistance in reserving a table. One of the best parts of vacation is dining, so make sure you have a seat!
Venture off the Beaten Path.
Every destination has its popular tourist spots and Costa Rica is no different. Areas like Tamarindo, Arenal, and Manuel Antonio are on everyone’s radar, which makes hotel availability very tight over the holidays. If you want to travel in December but don’t want to deal with the crowds, consider going off the beaten path. The Osa Peninsula is a great alternative for anyone who wants to experience more animals than people. The area’s rustic jungle lodges are small with just a handful of rooms. Even if your lodge is full, you will only see ten or twelve other people roaming around the property at any time. Some of our other favorite off-the-beaten path destinations include Dominical and Santa Teresa.
Ready to plan a holiday escape? Check out all of our Holiday Vacation Packages.