PSA: Costa Rica Will No Longer Allow Covac Global Air Evacuations

PSA: Costa Rica Will No Longer Allow Covac Global Air Evacuations


Update: Please see Covac Global's updated evacuation requirements as of 1/11/22

Costa Rica Will No Longer Allow COVID-19 Air Evacuations, such that we no longer recommend that clients travel to Costa Rica while this order remains in place. Our top recommendation for this service is Covac Global, which transports members home via air ambulance if the member has tested positive for COVID-19 with a PCR test and exhibits one or more COVID-19 symptoms, including but not limited to fever, chills, or fatigue. This provides significant peace of mind, particularly in the time of Omicron, which is highly transmissible and could otherwise derail many Americans' plans to return home, since the U.S. now requires negative results from a COVID-19 test taken within 1 day prior to flying to the U.S.

Previously Costa Rica did permit visitors who tested positive for COVID-19 but had mild symptoms to be transported by air ambulance from the country; the new policy was announced 12/17/21. This means that if a U.S. traveler tests positive for COVID-19 while in Costa Rica, the traveler will be issued a mandatory quarantine order of 10-14 days, which must be undertaken in Costa Rica. Per the U.S. Embassy, the Costa Rica Ministry of Health has stated that this quarantine order cannot be appealed or shortened, even if the traveler subsequently tests negative for COVID-19 while in quarantine.

Here's part of what we received from Covac Global, bolding ours:

“Costa Rica has made an overnight decision that it will not allow Americans (or any nationality) with mild symptoms to be safely removed via air ambulance from the country…If members have current plans to travel to Costa Rica, we recommend that you reconsider those plans, as we can no longer conduct evacuations from Costa Rica…For our mildly symptomatic members in Costa Rica, the government has made a decision that they will not be allowed to leave the country. Those who are hospitalized and in serious condition MAY be allowed to leave, but there is no guarantee that they will.”

As of time of writing, the only countries Covac Global does not provide evacuations from are Costa Rica, North Korea, and Iran.

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