This post may contain affiliate links from our advertising partners, such as American Express. Read my Advertiser Disclosure policy here. Additionally, some of the offers on this page may no longer be available through Deals We Like.
A month or so ago, Southwest announced that they were looking to get government approval to start flying to Costa Rica (SJO Airport). While the approval is still pending, you can actually go ahead and start to make your reservations! Hopefully though there will be no approvals getting this approval, and Southwest can continue to expand internationally! I know I am beyond thrilled as I am still a Southwest Companion Pass holder, so flying for me is a BOGO always!
Service will start March 7, 2015 and fly direct from Baltimore Airport (BWI). So if you are in a city that flies to Baltimore, you can catch a connecting flight to Costa Rica. This includes flights from Kansas City, St. Louis, Nashville, Milwaukee, Chicago (Midway), Grand Rapids, Flint, Buffalo/Niagara Falls, Rochester, Albany, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Dayton, Columbus, Indianapolis, Greenville, Orlando, Portland, Manchester, Boston, Hartford, Providence, and Long Island Islip.
There is one flight daily from BWI to Costa Rica’s San Jose Airport that leaves at 8:40am and arrives at 11:45am. On the return, the flight leaves San Jose at 12:40pm and arrives at BWI at 7:35pm. Although there are daily flights from BWI that does not mean daily flights to/from your desired airport. For example, from Long Island Islip, you cannot depart on a Sunday or return on a Saturday. And remember, all flights route through Baltimore, so if you are in Orlando, for example, you will have to go north to then go back south – probably not an ideal route at all!
Right now, flights are anywhere between $200-$250 each way. I checked to see if there were Standard Award Ticket availability and it was pretty slim. Although if you are flexible, you can probably find a few dates to grab these free tickets. Note that these are free tickets from the Rapid Rewards 1.0 system, not points that you now accrue. You can learn more about transferring points to standard award tickets through this loophole here (note that it is ending soon!).
So for about $450 you can get a roundtrip flight to SJO. This price is comparable to another airline, so no great deal. And, you do not have the option to fly in or out of Liberia Airport. But… if you have the Southwest Companion Pass this can be a great deal!! Taxes are about $50 roundtrip, so you can pay $450 for the first passenger and then another $50 for the companion. $500 for two tickets is pretty good! And you have the benefit of being able to change or cancel your flight with no fee – another perk of all Southwest flights.
As mentioned previously, I am very excited about this new route!!! Let’s just hope there are no issues with government approval.