Relocate to Costa Rica
Are you thinking of relocating to Costa Rica? Join one of our Relocation tours, enjoy your wonderful week with us and discover Costa Rica from a new perspective! Our professionals will guide you through the process of planning your move, determining which areas you would like to tour and what to do in the country.
During the trip, we’ll provide you the travelers with all the information regarding obtaining residency, answering legal questions, advising on investing or borrowing in Costa Rica, relocating, the education system, healthcare, and any other topics that might arise.
1. What to do before you move
Before you move to Costa Rica, there are a few things you should take care of. First, you should see Costa Rica with your own eyes, visit the most popular beach destinations for yourself, have your “boots on the ground” approach, so you can feel its beauty form inside.
Second, consult with an experienced immigration service to understand the residency process better and what categories of residency are available to you and your specific needs.
Determine your budget
Costa Rica is a relatively affordable place to live, but it’s essential to determine your budget before moving. A few tips we have for you are: consider your housing (an airbnb can be good temporarily), food (restaurants are on par with USA prices), transportation (Uber or Didi), healthcare (CCSS), and education costs.
Choose your location
There are many beautiful places to live in Costa Rica, so you’ll need to decide which one is right for you. Depending on your budget and lifestyle, you may want to consider a beach town, the central city of San Jose, rural, or mountain areas. Each of the destinations has a unique charm and amenities, so be sure to do your research before deciding.
Learn about the culture
Costa Rica is known for its beaches, tourism, friendly people, rainforests, and laid-back lifestyle. However, there are also some cultural differences that you should be aware of before making a move. For example, Costa Rica tends to dress more formally than Americans, and they often greet each other with a kiss on the cheek.
The cuisine is quite different as well, for example, Gallo Pinto is a very popular option for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, which is some of the best beans and rice in the world. Usually served with an egg or sausage and cheese!
2. How to get residency in Costa Rica
The first step in getting residency in the country is to consult with an experienced immigration servicer. Here you can leave your information so they can help you understand the process and what options are available to you.
To get started you’ll need to gather your documents before you leave your home country or pay for a service to do it for you. Obtain your police record certificate (federal level) from your local police department and your birth certificate both of which need to be apostilled. Regardless the country you are from, you will still need the aforementioned papers.
3. What to bring with you when you move
When you decide to move to Costa Rica, there are a few things you should bring with you. First, pack all the documents you need, like your police/birth certificates, passport, credit card (usually the easiest way to get the best conversion rates to colones), and driver’s license. You’ll also need to get enough clothing for a tropical climate and any prescription medications you take. Additionally, bringing some cash with you to the beach can be a good idea, as not all businesses in the country accept credit cards outside the Central Valley.
All of the plugs in South, North, and Central America use the USA standard (2 or 3 prongs model) meaning if you’re coming from North America you shouldn’t need any adapters for your plug-in devices. The standard voltage in the country is 110-120 volts, which is the same as in the United States and Canada. The remainder of the globe uses a voltage range of 220-240 volts.
4. How to adjust to life with Costa Ricans
The country is known across the world for its friendly people, tourism, laid-back lifestyle, and beautiful wildlife. However, there are also some cultural differences that you should be aware of before making a move. Learning some basic Spanish and common Costa Rican phrases before moving to this wonderful country is very helpful. Although it is preferable to speak some Spanish, you can get by with just English because many ticos learn English at school and like practicing with outsiders.
There are many ways to adjust to life in Costa Rica. One of the best things you can do is to find a community of fellow expats on Facebook who can help you navigate the details of the cultural differences. Additionally, there are many resources available online that can help you learn more about the country’s culture, customs, and wildlife to get connected.
5. How to make money in Costa Rica
If you’re looking for a job in Costa Rica in most cases the only approach would be online until you’re at least a permanent resident, so the best place to start is with your network of friends and family. Ask around to see if anyone knows of any openings, or check online job boards like Indeed.com. You can also try contacting companies directly inside or outside of the country to inquire about employment opportunities.
Even better would be to learn how to invest your money in local projects and make 12-14% interest! Click here to sign up and find out more!
6. How to start a business in Costa Rica
Starting a business in Costa Rica can be a great way to make money, live the expat lifestyle and only require temporary residency if you are “hands-off”. However, it would be best to keep a few things in mind before taking the plunge. First, you’ll need to choose the proper structure, like a sole proprietorship or limited liability company. Then you’ll also need to hire a few tico’s to obtain the necessary licenses and permits from the government. Additionally, having a solid plan and enough capital is vital to getting your business off the ground.
7. Healthcare in Costa Rica
The country has high-quality, affordable healthcare and covers pre-existing conditions, health problems you had before the date that your new health coverage starts! However, you should know a few things before using the system. First, you’ll need to obtain a residency status before accessing healthcare coverage in Costa Rica. Once you have it approved by Immigration, you will have to enroll in the national health insurance program (CCSS), and purchase private health insurance if you wish. The country has lots of hospitals and clinics that offer high-quality care.
8. Education in Costa Rica
The country offers many excellent educational opportunities for expats. Many private schools provide bilingual and international schools that follow an American or British curriculum. Additionally, the country has some universities that offer degree programs in English. However, it would help if you kept a few things in mind when choosing an educational institution. First, you’ll need to ensure that the Costa Rican government accredits the school. Additionally, it’s essential to check that the school’s curriculum meets your needs and that the teaching staff is qualified.
9. Find the best place to live in Costa Rica
There are several factors to consider when choosing to move across the world and live in a new country. First, you’ll need to decide whether you want to live in the city, the countryside, the beach or mountains area. If you choose to live in the city, you’ll have access to more amenities and opportunities, but you’ll also have to deal with more traffic and pollution.
If you choose to live in the countryside, you’ll enjoy a more relaxed pace, but you’ll need to be prepared to live without some of the conveniences of city living. Additionally, it’s essential to consider your budget when choosing a place to live, as costs can vary significantly depending on the location.
10. How to get around in Costa Rica
Travelers first start in the center of things at the international airport of San Jose unless you choose to take the pan American highway (number 1 highway) which reaches from Alaska all the way down to the start of South America in Panama. The country has many options for locals and tourists alike to get around, tour guides, buses, taxis, and Uber/Didi. The most popular choice is the bus for locals, as it is relatively cheap and easy to use. However, buses can be crowded and uncomfortable and are not always reliable. Ubers are a more comfortable option, but they are also more expensive.
If you choose to rent or buy a car, you’ll have the freedom to explore the country at your own pace, but you’ll need to be prepared to drive on unpaved roads. Additionally, it’s good to remember that going to a Central American country can be a different experience than at home on the road, so it’s necessary to be cautious and always follow the signs.
11. What to do once you’re in Costa Rica
Now that you’re here, in the country of beautiful coasts and sun it’s time to explore your new home! There are many beautiful places and wildlife to see, so be sure to take advantage of all that the country offers like the beautiful beaches in the Guanacaste, Puntarenas and Caribbean areas! Join our tour to explore this amazing country and find your favorite place that you can make your new home!
CONTACT US to reserve your spot on our tour!