San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Mother's Day: What to do and where to shop

Mother’s Day is widely celebrated in Costa Rica, and you can find many discounts, deals and special events leading up to and around the Aug. 15 holiday.

Tourism Promotions

The Costa Rica Tourism Board, or ICT, is promoting domestic tourism in Costa Rica for Mother’s Day with many deals and discounts all over the country for Costa Ricans and residents. According to Ireth Rodríguez, assistant director of marketing for ICT, the idea is to give the Costa Rican family the opportunity to travel and sightsee on this special day with instant promotions and juicy discounts.

Hotels and tour operators are offering discounts of 15-50 percent off normal rates. In addition, some are offering extra bonuses like kids under 12 eat for free, 2-for-1 packages or free passes to hot springs with a hotel stay.

Additionally, a contest has been running on Facebook pages in collaboration with local television stations. For example, correctly identify a photo of a popular destination in Costa Rica, and your name is entered into a drawing for various prizes, like a trip for four to the destination in the contest.

The campaign, “¡Vamos a Turistear!” (Let’s go sightseeing!), is a collaboration between the Costa Rican Chamber of Hotels (CCH), the Costa Rican Association of Tour Operators (ACOT), the National Chamber of Tourism in Rural Communities (Canturural) and private businesses. For more information about the campaign and Mother’s Day promotions, visit the instant promotions page on the website:

Mother’s Day Lottery

The Costa Rica Lottery is hosting a special Mother’s Day Lottery. More than ₡1.886 million ($3,741,824) will be given away in prizes. The jackpot is ₡250 million ($500,000) and the drawing will take place on August 18. The tickets already are on sale – ₡15,000 ($30) for a sheet, and ₡1,500 ($3) for a fraction (one ticket).

Don’t know how the lottery works? See our story.

Store Sales

Shops and ferias in San José and other cities are hosting contests and having sales for Mother’s Day. The daily La Nación reported that stores are seeing a decrease in purchases this year, with most people buying small gifts, mainly personal care items and cosmetics. Store owners are holding out hope that sales will increase before Aug. 15.

Because it is one of the biggest retail periods in Costa Rica, shoppers can expect discounts and sales in many stores. For example, the big chain, Monge, has discounts of up to 25 percent on electronics and furniture. The store is also running a contest – for every ₡50,000 ($100) spent, a customer’s name is entered into a drawing for five prizes of ₡1 million ($2,000) each.

Some discounts are only offered if an item is purchased on credit, so it’s a good idea to watch out for these types of sales. Purchases made on credit in Costa Rica can get out of control, as the interest rates can be high.

Mother’s Day Events

On Wednesday, Aug. 14, the National Theater in San José will host a special program for Mother’s Day at noon. Teachers and students from Kinesis, a dance academy in Alajuela, will give a short presentation of the bolero dance, Bachata, bolero creole and even a tango delight. They will then give way to the audience, converting the stage and the aisles of the auditorium into a ballroom where everyone is invited to dance.

“The idea came from the experience last year when in a presentation by the same academy, some dancers incorporated some of the attendees in a dance. It was just one, but in the end it was impossible to seat the audience and the show ended with a big dance. Hence, we wanted to repeat the experience and therefore offer the auditorium to attendees so they can celebrate Mother’s Day with a good dance,” said producer Ronald Álvarez. Cost is ₡1,000 ($2) per person.

On Friday, Aug. 16, at 7 p.m. in Cartago, east of the capital, the Culture Ministry is hosting a concert in the San Luis Gonzago high school gym with composer and arranger Adrián Goizueta and his group Cu4t3o. They will also perform again on Sunday, Aug. 18, at 11 a.m. in Cartago’s Municipal Ampitheatre. Both concerts are free.

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