1. ENTRY VISA
Depending on citizenship, an entry visa to Costa Rica may be needed. The Visa Officer at the UPEACE Office of the Registrar and Academic Administration will assist students with restricted nationalities and those that require Consular entry visas to obtain all proper documentation from the Directorate General of Immigration in Costa Rica.
Detailed information about country classification and the entry requirements of different nationalities is available on the website of the Directorate General of Immigration. Access it here.
There are 4 relevant visa groups. Groups I and II do not need an entry visa to enter Costa Rica. Their student visas will be processsed upon arrival in Costa Rica. Groups III and IV require entry visas to enter Costa Rica. See the images below for country classification into these 4 groups.
GROUPS I AND II
GROUPS III AND IV
In reference to all official documentation, the following definitions may be helpful:
- Authenticate: to prove or serve to prove that (something) is genuine; especially: to prove that (an item of evidence) is genuine for the purpose of establishing admissibility; or to make (a written instrument) valid and effective by marking esp. with one's signature (usually done by lawyers or Consulates)
- Certify: to attest as certain; give reliable information of; confirm; or to guarantee; endorse reliably: to certify a document with an official seal. 3. to give assurance; testify; vouch for the validity of something.
(Example: Universities stamp copies of transcripts with the University’s seal and the registrar signs next to the seal to certify the document is a true copy)
To request an entry visa, the following documents must be sent:
- Photocopy of passport pages where name, photo, birth date, birthplace, date of issuance and expiration appear (this document must be sent on the application package)
- Visa Form: this document is also required in the application package.
- Photocopy of flight itinerary
- Notarized affidavit of support and bank statement
Notice of approved entry visas will be provided to both a Costa Rican Consulate and UPEACE. On the Visa Form the applicant was asked to provide the nearest Costa Rican Consulate so that the General Immigration Authorities of Costa Rica can send notification of the approved visa there.
DAA will send you a scanned copy of the visa approval in order for you to approach the Costa Rican Consulate. To find out the location of your nearest Costa Rican Consulate, check the following website:
The entry visa costs approximately US$ 20, which is payable at the Costa Rican Consulate or upon your arrival to the Costa Rican International Airport.
2. STUDENT TEMPORARY RESIDENCY (STR)
According to University for Peace policy, it is mandatory by that all UPEACE students have a legal status in Costa Rica. Therefore, all students must provide to the DAA the following documentation during the Orientation Session:
- Photocopy of passport pages where name, photo, birth date, birthplace, date of issuance and expiration appear (this document was required for your application package)
- Visa Form: this document was also sent in your application package.
- Birth Certificate, clearly stating the names of the parents. The certificate must be in the original language, accompanied by an official English translation and authenticated or legalized by the nearest Costa Rican Consulate. The document must be received by DAA within 90 days of the issuance date.
- Criminal Record report from the country of origin or from the country where the student has resided for the last 3 years. The document must be in the original language, accompanied by anofficial English translation, and authenticated or legalized by the nearest Costa Rican Consulate. The document must be received by DAA within 90 days of the issuance date.
Please note that the student will have to pay $40 per document for an official stamp required to validate them in Costa Rica. In cases when the consulate is not able to sell this stamp, the student may buy it at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Costa Rica. UPEACE can assist students with this process, but students are responsible for all fees.
Note:The Costa Rican authorities established all fees, and they are subject to change.
Each Costa Rican Consulate has a different process for document authentication, so students are advised to contact their local consulate with enough anticipated time to obtain information. Some processes may require up to three weeks.
Note: If the country does not issue any of the requested documents, the student must bring a certification stating that it is the country’s internal policy not to issue these documents.
Without these two documents the University for Peace will not be able to process the student permit nor will it be held responsible for the student’s migratory status. Students who fail to provide the above mentioned documents will be prohibited from registering, attending classes, using student services, such as Library, printing, Internet, UPEACE e-mail accounts, or receiving transcripts or certification, etc.
It is mandatory for UPEACE to notify the Costa Rican Immigration authorities about students who do not provide the necessary documentation to legalize their student status in Costa Rica.
3. ENTRY VISA FOR SPOUSES AND/OR CHILDREN
Married students who will travel with their spouses and/or children will also be assisted. The following documents needed at least six weeks in advance:
- Visa Form http://www.upeace.org/PDF/Visa.pdf
- Clear copy of the main pages of the spouses and/or children’s passport.
4. TEMPORARY STUDENT DEPENDENT PERMIT
The following documents must be provided upon arrival at UPEACE:
- Birth Certificate of their spouse and/or children, clearly stating the names of the parents. The certificate must be in the original language, accompanied by an official English translation, and authenticated or legalized by the nearest Costa Rican Consulate. The document must be received by our Visa Officer within 90 days of the issuance date.
- Criminal Record of their spouse and/or children aged 12 years or above, report from the country of origin or from the country where the student has resided for the last 3 years. The document must be in the original language, accompanied by an official English translation, andauthenticated or legalized by the nearest Costa Rican Consulate. The document must be received by our Visa Officer within 90 days of the issuance date.
- Certificate of marriage (not for children), the document must be in the original language, accompanied by an official English translation, and authenticated or legalized by the nearest Costa Rican Consulate. The document must be received by our Visa Officer within 90 days of the issuance date.
- It is an Immigration General Directorate regulation that if the child will be residing in Costa Rica with only one parent, a letter of authorization must be signed by the parent who will not be travelling to Costa Rica, stating his/her approval to be away from the child for the spouses' study period.
The student is responsible for all costs related to the entry visa and the permit for his/her spouse and/or children.
5. YELLOW FEVER VACCINE
Please note that students coming from the countries listed below must submit the Yellow Fever International Certificate upon arrival to the Costa Rican airport, which is effective 10 days after the vaccination.
Sub-Saharan Africa: Angola, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, and Sudan.
South America: Bolivia, Venezuela, Brazil, Peru, Colombia, and Ecuador.
Caribbean: French Guyana.
- ROUND TRIP TICKET
Please note that Costa Rican Immigration authorities require that all non-Costa Ricans who enter the country must have a round trip ticket. In the past, several of our students have been ordered to buy a return ticket at the airport to comply with this requirement or have been kept from boarding a connecting flight. Please do not take any chances.
UPEACE is registered at the Directorate General of Immigration in Costa Rica, therefore, is able to assist students, their spouses and children in the processing of all necessary visas and residencies to complete UPEACE academic programmes.
Application for entry visa and temporary student permits take place in Costa Rica, once the student has provided all necessary documents and fees involved in this process.
- TRANSIT VISAS
Students are responsible for inquiring about, and covering, the costs of all transit visas needed to travel to Costa Rica. Upon request by e-mail, UPEACE will provide certification letters stating that the applicant has been admitted to UPEACE, to support transit visa applications.