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I am arriving at the San Jose airport in Costa Rica rather late in the evening (with small children). I would like to stay overnight somewhere close, ideally without going into San Jose itself (which I don't really want to visit anyway) and even better arrange for someone from the hotel to pick us up. What are my options on low to mid budget?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Hotel Mi Tierra (2nd Ave., Alajuela) is family friendly and has some good reviews, and it's about 2.5 km north of the Airport.

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I can recommend Maleku Hostel in Alajuela (Hostelworld entry). It's comfy, and located a short drive (2 km or 5 min) away from the airport. Also, they offer:

Free shuttle to the airport (from Hostel TO Airport, starting 5am to 5pm) it's a great place to stay before a morning flight out of SJO.

There are private rooms available (from USD 25), so I think it's good for families too. (I stayed in a dorm and paid $12 (March 2011), but looks like it's $15 now.)

As for other low budget options, there's also Alajuela Backpackers, with slightly mixed reviews.

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