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Toiletries in Costa Rica?

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Portland, Oregon
posts: 10
Toiletries in Costa Rica?

Help! I am going to Costa Rica for the first time over Christmas......my husband won't let me check a bag for fear of it getting lost, and between needing to take DEET, bug cream, sunscreen, just plus all my usual toiletries, there is no way this will all fit in my little US-required ziplock bag in my carry on baggage! Argh! Can you buy stuff like that in Costa Rica? I mean, I can live without shampoo and saline solution for a couple days......we are landing in San Jose and then driving up toward Canas and then turning toward Bijagua where I think there will be few services, but how about on that road from San Jose to Canas?

2 replies to this topic
San Jose, Costa Rica
posts: 40,496
1. Re: Toiletries in Costa Rica?

Every thing that you may need it is available as in USA ...

It is International mall 3 minutes from terminal towards Alajuela...that may be the place you need!

Even Wall Mart almost across from SJO...if you are a Wall Mart costumer if you are not sorry...keep going to the mall on the road to Alajuela...mall Internacional!


Seattle, Washington
Destination Expert
for Seattle, Washington
posts: 4,953
reviews: 7
2. Re: Toiletries in Costa Rica?

If you do decide to travel with carry-on only, then I'd plan on carrying travel sizes & then refilling or replacing them in a few days. If you shop around, then yes you can find most US brands in CR, but they will be more expensive if imported. Some of same US brands are made in Central or South America, so they will be less expensive.

I find many items are less expensive in the independent pharmacies. If the pharmacist doesn't have the brand you want, then he/she will recommend a generic or local brand equivalent. They're usually not as expensive.

If it matters, WalMart also owns several of the grocery store chains such as Pali, Maxi Pali, Mas X Menos, etc.

One thing to keep in mind is that most things are more expensive outside of the central valley. The $10 bottle of suntan lotion you found in Alajuela may cost you $20 at the beach.

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