Expats in Costa Rica: Why they Love to Stick Around

10 months ago  •  By  •  1 Comments

Why Expats in Costa Rica Love to Stay

Expats in Costa Rica are increasing in numbers and this trend will just appreciate in the coming years. Many people are asking why. Costa Rica is an English speaking nation thanks to its high literacy rate. Its population is also friendly to foreigners thanks to the country’s long history of hosting expats.

Costa Rica also has a very beautiful landscape. It has forest reserves, white sand beaches, lakes, valleys, and mountains that provide people with so many things to see and do. Most expats in the country were tourists before visiting the country for the first time. Thanks to the charm and warmth of Costa Rica many choose to stay for good. Expats however have four major reasons why they visit here often or choose to stay here for good.

The Perfect Climate For Everybody

Expats in Costa Rica loves the climate

Costa Rica has warm weather all year round. Going to the beach everyday or spending time outdoors is very doable. There are only two seasons in the country – the dry and wet seasons. The wet season is from May to November and the dry season runs from December to April.

This simple seasonal cycle makes life in the country simpler compared to what expats have to deal with in North America.

The better news however about Costa Rica’s climate is that it can be regional. Even though it is a small country (comparable to the size of Virginia) the regional divides in the country also offer different climates that would be a perfect fit to the different preferences of expats.

Expats in Costa Rica who love the sun can choose to live in the Northern Pacific Coast also known as the Golden Coast. This region receives the least rain in the country and the humidity here is quite higher than anywhere else in Costa Rica.

For expats in Costa Rica who would prefer a colder temperature the obvious choice would be the Central Valley. The Central Valley is more of like a plateau that rises to almost 3000 ft. above sea level on some areas.

This high elevation makes it colder compared to other parts in the country. In Costa Rica the primary rule is the higher you get, the colder it becomes. 70 F is the median temperature in the valley but it dips to as low as 60 F at night making a sweater necessary.

The Arenal region is almost the same with the valley’s climate thanks to its high elevation but this area tends to be more humid at times.

An Easy Going Lifestyle

Expats in Costa Rica, Costa Rica Expats, Expats Costa Rica

Expats in Costa Rica stick around because of the attitude of the people here and it rubs even to foreigners. The phrase “pura vida” sums it all up. When translated to English this phrase means living the good life. Puerto Ricans love to spend their time with family and they tend to enjoy life more.

Costa Ricans work to live and not the other way around, which is what many expats are used to doing back in the US. Spending time in the country allows expats to reexamine their lives and allow them to loosen up a bit.

The pura vida attitude allows people to take life easy and expats in Costa Rica tend to stand by this philosophy while in the country. Many want to embrace it for life so they stay around for good.

A Low Cost Of Living

expats enjoy low cost in costa rica

Costa Rica is known to have affordable cost of living minus the compromises in one’s standard of living. This combination makes expats in Costa Rica stay for longer periods of time if not forever. The two leading expenses known to man from all over the world is housing and health care. Both of these are very affordable in Costa Rica.

Health care here can be secured for as low as $130 (thru a health insurance). But that amount can already provide access to the country’s private health care system which is more efficient and more expensive than the public health care system.

Expats who apply in the country’s public health care system (Caja) can save more as they are only required to pay a small monthly stipend to access the services of 30 hospitals in the country for free. Visiting a doctor here only costs $50.

Renting and owning a house in Costa Rica is also very affordable compared to the prices of real estate in the US. A house that has a view of the Pacific Ocean with modern stainless appliances can be bought for as low as $150000. For expats in Costa Rica who want to have a simpler lifestyle, a Tico style house with a smaller floor area minus the appliances can be bought for as low as $50000.

This too has a view of the ocean so the lack of space may not be a big issue for some. Renting a fully furnished condo with two rooms and just a walking distance from the beach is possible costing around $600 a month. But there are some expats in Costa Rica that are renting small rooms for just $300 a month.

It is very common for many retired expats to have a monthly budget of $2000. This affords them a very comfortable life already. Some can live on a $1200 budget. It all depends on an expat’s lifestyle.

The Ideal Location Of Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a just a two and a half hour flight to the US. This is why there are many flights from the United States to the country’s two international airports located in Liberia and San Jose. Round tickets from Miami to San Jose can only cost around $400 making a trip to this Central American paradise easy and inexpensive.

Expats in Costa Rica can easily go back to the US as often as their budget will permit (which is not that much at all). This cheap plane tickets will also make it easy for American friends to fly to Costa Rica to visit relocated expats resulting to lots of fun and can also cure homesickness big time.

Expats in Costa Rica can easily enjoy the laid back feel of the country but also rest in the assurance that when and if they need to go back to the US they can do so with no problem. This adds to the advantages of living in Costa Rica.

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