Frequently Asked Questions

All your questions, answered.

What is a typical day at Rise Up?

The daily schedule is dictated by the surf conditions and the ideal times to surf.

What's included on a retreat?

  • Transportation to/from the airport.
  • Accommodation in a shared or private cabana, private bathroom, and access to a beautiful beachfront resort.
  • All daily meals, snacks, and drinks (alcohol not included).
  • Daily surf coaching and guiding with experienced coaches.
  • Surfboard rental – we have an excellent quiver of boards to choose from!
  • Daily yoga classes with our in-house yoga teacher.
  • Fun activities throughout the week! Transport to/from included.
  • An incredible crew to host you throughout your stay!

Where do I fly into?

  • Nicaragua: Managua International Airport (MGA) – 3 hour drive to hotel
  • Barbados: Grantley Adams International (GAIA) is the airport for Barbados – 20 minutes drive to hotel
  • Costa Rica: San Jose Airport (SJO) and then a domestic flight from SJO to Puerto Jimenez (PJM) – 20 minute drive to hotel
  • Guatemala: La Aurora International Airport (GUA) – 3 hour drive to hotel

What are the entry and exit requirements for Nicaragua?

  • To enter Nicaragua, your passport needs to be valid for 6 months.
  • All visitors entering Nicaragua are required to purchase a Tourist Card for $10 USD.
  • Visas are generally not required for stays up to 3 months.
  • Citizens of some parts of Eastern Europe and Latin America, and many African and Asian nations, need visas to enter Nicaragua, while others can apply for a visa on arrival. Check the Nicaraguan Foreign Ministry website: for the full lists.

Do you provide airport transfers?

All our packages include round-trip transportation to and from the International or in the case of Costa Rica only the local airport of Puerto Jimenez.

What should I bring?

In addition to your standard packing list items, please see our packing checklist to ensure you have the best stay with us!

Our locations are off-the-grid! Note the following things for Nicaragua:

WiFi: We recommend unplugging! If you absolutely need connection, we advise getting a local SIM card at the airport (there is a Movistar stand near the exit after baggage).

ATM: Make sure to get out enough cash at the airport before you leave as there is

no ATM near Rise Up. USD or Córdoba is accepted in Nicaragua.

No general store: Plan to have everything you need before getting to Rise Up as we are far from a local store (ex: enough sunscreen, repellent, etc.).

Showers: We do not have warm showers. You will probably prefer cold ones anyways 🙂

In addition we recommend the following:

  • Bring eco-friendly toiletries: shampoo, conditioner, etc. as much as possible.
  • Bring a re-usable water bottle (we provide drinking water for refilling).
  • Bring a re-usable shopping bag instead of getting plastic bags at markets.

Are you able to cater meals for vegetarians, vegans or anyone with food allergies?

We are able to cater to most dietary requirements as long as we have prior notice. Please specify any dietary requirements you may have on the registration form.

What are the opportunities to give back?

Rise Up Kids is an NGO that we created to support the education and needs of children living within the local communities around Rise Up. We create, implement, and support sustainable projects that are focused on the development and well-being of kids. We believe that together with our guests, we can accomplish greater things and can take on projects that will change the lives of young Nicaraguans and future generations to come.

During your week of your retreat we organize some activities with the local schools. We will visit, deliver donations, and enjoy some football games with the kids!

If you are interested in collaborating, you can bring: socks, pencils, notebooks, soaps, shampoos, etc.

The best way to help our mission is to donate! Even a small amount can make a big difference! 100% of donations go towards our projects.

Is there Wi-Fi?

We have WiFi available in all our locations, however at times it can be unreliable. That said, we recommend and prefer our guests disconnect from their devices as much as possible!

What breaks could we expect to surf while at Rise Up?

While at Rise Up Surf Retreats, you will be put into a small group that matches your surf level and brought to the best waves for your surf ability. Many of the breaks we surf are so empty we prefer not to name them to keep it that way!

Do you rent surfboards?

We include boards in all our packages. However if you have a particular preference then please reach out to find out what boards we have available.

What time is check-in and check-out?

  • Check-in is at 2pm.
  • Check-out is at 11am.

What is our late check out policy?

Due to our model of running retreats Saturday to Saturday it really depends on the location and what is happening at that specific time so please ask and we can let you and accommodate you if we can.

What is our early arrival policy?

Requests for early arrival before the designated check-in is possible based on availability.

Do you recommend travel insurance?

Yes absolutely. Insurance is compulsory to come on our retreats and our recommendation is Global Rescue as they cover all the activities you will be doing on your trip. If you have a preferable insurance provider please be sure to check that your policy includes travel cancellation, delays, and medical coverage in the case of an accident or injury doing activities such as surfing or hiking on volcanoes.

Do we offer child rates?

Children up to 3 years old are free. Then children from the age of 3 to 8 are 25% off and from 8 and above is full price.

What gratuity or tip do you recommend?

There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes to make your stay as smooth and enjoyable as possible! This includes our back of house staff (kitchen, groundskeepers, etc.) In addition to our front of house staff such as surf instructors, yoga teachers, drivers and hosts.

If you have had a great experience at Rise Up, we recommend a 10% tip on the trip total.

This will go directly to our wonderful staff members and makes a great difference as USD, CAD, the GPB and the Euro go much further than the local currencies.

Where can I get a copy of my receipt after departure?

Yes, please email [email protected] to request an email copy of your receipt.

What are the extra charges when on a retreat?

We recommend bringing enough cash to pay for alcoholic drinks, massages, souvenirs, extra activities and tips. Please note that as we run in remote locations, the airport is the best place to get out cash as ATM’s are not available in every destination. Cash is also recommended as in some locations it is the only method possible.

Are all taxes included in the package price?

All in country taxes are included but you may have a fee depending on the method of payment you are using.

What are the terms and conditions of booking a trip with Rise Up?

Please take the time to carefully read our terms and conditions prior to making a reservation.

Is Central America safe?

Our guests are our number one priority and if we ever had reason to believe our locations are unsafe, we would not run the risk of running them. Our retreats run in off-the-beaten path locations that are perfectly safe for tourists, and our guests have always felt very safe and comfortable. We recommend having the same level of caution as you would in your own home country and following common sense to minimize petty theft.

What are the steps that Rise Up Surf Retreats take to ensure client safety?

  • We strive to be fully aware of guests who may have allergies, injuries or serious medical conditions
  • Our local surf instructors and guides are ISA certified, life guard certification and hold their First Aid certifications. On top of that they have years of experience teaching. Our coaching methods and sound and thorough and truly focus on how to surf safely as one of the foundations when working with us.
  • Our guests are always given the appropriate information and instructions about the surf and activities to ensure their health and safety
  • Our drivers, boat captains and volcano guides are all First Aid Certified
  • We keep a full medical kit on site at the camp and always travel with a medical kit when on any kind of trip.
  • Our boat and vehicles are kept in good condition, with regular maintenance.
  • We have an emergency plan that includes contacting reliable English speaking doctors at the emergency clinic nearby. We always have a cell phone or radio on us in the event of an emergency.

For more on our health and safety please read our terms and conditions. It is also compulsory to have international medical insurance to come on a trip with us and have this information available for us to find in the case of an emergency.

COVID19 & Nicaragua

Please see more info related to COVID-19 on this page.

If you have any more questions email [email protected] and we’d be happy to help.