This is Holy week in Costa Rica and many businesses are closed for the week. All are closed Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Saturday and Easter Sunday. Banks were open the beginning of the week but them along with all of the malls shut down today for the balance of the weekend. Buses aren’t running, not many taxi’s on the street and basically only the grocery stores or supermercados as they call them here are open and not all of them.
If you are trying to conduct business this week forget it, it isn’t going to happen. All of the government offices have been closed since Monday.
You can’t even ship a pet into Costa Rica this weekend because Customs is closed. If an animal flies into Costa Rica unaccompanied by the owner, it will sit in the Customs warehouse until Monday when they open back up. They don’t care if they eat or get water, it is the strangest thing to me. The owner can come in if they can talk their way in and feed and walk the dog but they can’t leave the premises until Monday.
In the states banks can only be closed for 3 days but here it seems sky is the limit. On this holiday they are closed for 4 days. At Christmas, depending on the day that Christmas falls, they can be closed up to 5 days.
90% of the population of the Central Valley has gone to the beach for the holiday. You would know this by the traffic yesterday heading out of town it was bumper to bumper for as far as you could see. There are no hotels to stay in (at the beach) as they have all been booked up since the end of February and prices are at their highest this week too.
Next week is the time to go to the beach if your going to go. Everyone will have returned from their 4-7 day holiday and the hotel prices will be cut in half.
We never go to the beach during Semana Santa for the reasons listed above. Take the kids out of school for a couple of days and take off a couple of days of work and go when there is no one there. It is kinda like Disney after Christmas break. A virtual ghost town and much more attractive and enjoyable than the madness of the crowds.
Business is back up and running on the 9th and everything will be backed up for a couple of days trying to catch up from the long holiday. But things will finally get done. I have so many irons in the fire just waiting for business to be back on that I can’t wait til Monday. Next week will be a busy week for everyone.