Many travellers are not aware that the San José airport is not actually in San José. It is located in Alajuela which is 20km west of the city. This is a bit inconvenient for those travellers who want to get a bus that only leaves from San José centre, but it is also good to know that many of the buses that leave San José pass Alajuela on their way. More info on this below.
To find the bus stop at the airport, you only need to head out the main doors and make your way to the highway in front. It is easy and there are some photos below to show you what it looks like.
Bus Terminals in San José
This is not an exhaustive list and not all terminals and destinations are listed below, but these are the most common ones travellers tend to use and what we have information for so far. We will keep adding and improving this list as we go!
Empresarios Unidos – Puntarenas is at Calle 16 and avenida 12 which is about 10 blocks south of the 7-10 Terminal.
And of course you have all of your international services such as Tica Bus, TransNica, Nicabus, Central Line, Platinum.
Airport to San José Centre
In front of the airport is a major highway that heads to San José. A taxi will cost you $25 USD but you can also take a local bus. I am told by the taxi organizer that all buses that pass the bus stop in front of the airport are heading to the city centre. If you know where your hotel is then you can maybe follow your route on Google Maps and get off at a close stop. Or head to the center and get a much cheaper taxi from there.
Villa Bonita is a great spot to know about if you are getting a bus but don’t want to head all the way to San José. Tons of buses pass by here and it is a common spot for travellers to grab the bus. Have a look at the Villa Bonita page for more information. This is a very common spot for both travellers and locals to get the bus from an there are locals who hang out there and sell drinks and snacks and help you flag down your bus. The only thing about this spot is that although it is very likely the bus will stop nothing is every 100% if you’re not at an actual station.
If you are still planning for your upcoming trip, I am told this Trip Planner from Gecko Trail is quite useful to help you prioritize where you want to spend your time! Gecko Trail is a ICT certified Travel Agency that has great core values and gives back to the community. So much to see and do in this beautiful country!
More details coming very soon!
Time to catch the bus, I’ll be back with more info soon.
Help your fellow traveller
If you have taken any of the buses on this page, please drop us a comment below about how the trip went, what time you left, how long it took and what it cost. And, definitely let us know if we have anything wrong.
Lets help each other in our travels!