The Costa Rica trip has been cancelled again

Sophia Petrie

More stories from Sophia Petrie


Brandon Preator

Outside Mr. Preator’s classroom at PHS, he promotes Costa Rica on the window so all students can view it.

Due to recent Covid regulations and vaccination issues, the Spanish students’ Costa Rica trip has been canceled for the third year in a row. 2022 seniors are the last of the current PHS students who had the opportunity to travel across the border their freshman year. 

To many Spanish students, this was a wonderful opportunity to get first-hand experience in a fluent spanish-speaking country, allowing them to use the language skills they’ve learned. After this trip was originally put together by students, PHS Spanish teacher Mr. Preator continued the tradition as a non-school affiliated trip to allow other students to have this experience.

I was really upset with the fact that we had paid all that money, but didn’t get to go and did not get a full refund.

— Jordyn Dearcorn

“When we signed up for the trip a couple years ago, it was set for this last summer,” Spanish teacher Mr. Brandon Preator said. “But it got postponed due to Covid and Costa Rica being closed, so it was changed to this summer.”

Covid restrictions swooped in again, and the travel company the students are using made it mandatory for all users to be vaccinated. Many students already couldn’t go this summer once the trip was postponed again, and some of the remaining were not willing to be vaccinated. This left about three students willing to make the trip to Costa Rica, leaving Mr. Preator to ultimately cancel it completely this summer. 

“I was really upset with the fact that we had paid all that money, but didn’t get to go and did not get a full refund,” junior Jordyn Dearcorn said. “My mom and I were willing to get the vaccines, but did not particularly like the idea of it.”

The classes’ travel company, Explorica, changed their restrictions about mid-February regarding the vaccinations. These changes were made due to Costa Rica requiring vaccinations for entry at some of their venues, such as hotels and restaurants. Covid has continued to put a halt on this trip for three years. 

“Being one of only two people who are still in highschool that went to Costa Rica is kind of crazy,” senior Hawkin Sweeney said. “At the time, two freshmen went, Brent Childers and I. We made tons of memories, met really cool people, experienced new outdoor activities, and saw exotic plants and wildlife.”

From the last trip to Costa Rica in 2019, Hawkin recalled making lots of new friends with the locals and new people he would’ve never otherwise, something that can create special memories for a lifetime. 

“It was a great trip overall and I highly recommend visiting,” Sweeney said. “For example, at one of the villas we visited, we played soccer with some of the local children on the beach and I haven’t ever experienced something quite like that since.” 

While the trip has been postponed more times than students would like, not all hope is lost. Other travel companies are still available, as well as other locations.

“I’m going on a trip to Spain this summer,” Preator said. “And if things go well there, I think I might explore offering a trip to Spain as well.”