Are you thinking of moving your life offshore? About to hit the eject button from your homeland? Have you ever wondered why over 100,000 expatriates have done exactly that and chose Costa Rica as their landing zone? You’re not alone and there are hundreds of reasons why this little nation is the perfect choice for many as their relocation destination.
Though an unseasonably warm winter was what you may have been treated to this year, it surely doesn’t erase from memory the sound and sensation of scraping that icy windshield at 7:30 in the morning before slipping and sliding down the highway to your stuffy, dry office. Remember that last shovelful of snow and with it the wish of a tropical paradise that danced across your mind? One obvious reason many choose to move to this country is the weather. Year-round sunshine and warm temperatures are a seducing pair of factors that often first attract expats. With annual temperatures from 71 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and picture perfect sunny mornings over 300 days of the year, you may wonder why you haven’t already traded in that shovel for a new set of golf clubs. Even during the rainy season (April to November) the rain tends to fall only in the middle of the afternoon, giving way to clear, starry skies at night.
Do you like endless stretches of pristine beach? Or are mountains and valleys more your style? Do you think that a tropical rainforest surrounded by pure nature would be the best fit? Perhaps you’re a bit of a city dweller and prefer the hustle and bustle of the concrete jungle. How about living in a peaceful, small community with quaint shops and warm, friendly inhabitants? Well, you are in luck. Costa Rica has them all, and more! For expats the sheer variety of options to live in any of the 27 microclimates, and hundreds of types of settings, urban and non, are almost overwhelming. Fear not, as this country is small and easy to navigate and there are plenty of opportunities to explore and carve out that perfect little slice of paradise that best suits your tastes and lifestyle.
Can I drink the water? You sure can, and more. Costa Ricans have one of the highest life expectancies of any population. This is due, in part, to a fantastic two-tiered private and public healthcare structure. Additionally, fresh fruit and vegetables are plentiful and available year round for cheap. You’ll be eating well and spending less time at the doctor’s office in little green country this place we call paradise. And when you do need that doctor, you have some of the best professional services and care in Latin America, hands down. Whether you choose private insurance for less than $1000 per year to visit the American style hospitals and clinics, or are a paying member of the social security system who enjoys universal health care, there are a myriad of options to be sure that you are going to be healthy and happy for many years to come.
Speaking of happiness, what are the Costa Ricans like as a people? Costa Rica tops the list of the happiest nations on Earth, year after year. According the Happy Planet Index, an index of human well-being and environmental impact, Costa Ricans are all smiles and leading the way in that pursuit that we all share. Starting to get the picture?
Perhaps what contributes to this sense of well-being that is shared by Costa Ricans and expats alike stems from the abolishment of a standing army in 1948, earning them the reputation as being the “Switzerland of Central America”. Peaceful means of resolving issues is engrained in the very political landscape and therefore the culture. Non-confrontational by nature, the people of Costa Rica will strip away any stress, worry and anxiety you may have with an approach to life well-encapsulated by the local expression “Pura Vida”, meaning Pure Life!
Having a stable democracy and long-standing respect for the democratic process is one of the many attractive characteristics that also bring a good deal of foreign investment here. Tax free work zones set up for multinationals like Intel, Hewlett Packard, Oracle, Proctor & Gamble, and hundreds more creates a healthy middle class, and economy that has shown steady growth even through the toughest economic times. With elected officials keyed into the means of bringing in these organizations and having them stay long-term is central to Costa Rica’s development and evolution out of a “banana republic” and into the 21st century of products and services.
Sounds great and all, but doesn’t this come with a high price attached to it? Not necessarily. Though Costa Rica is one of the more expensive countries in the region, inflation is relatively low and the cost of living is quite affordable. Considering that many locals earn less than $500 per month, the question becomes less about what it costs to live and more about what level of lifestyle you wish to lead. If a modest home and trips to the market every week is your pace, then a couple can live very comfortably for around $2000 per month. But if the latest Land Rover, Tiffany bracelet, and multimillion dollar mansions on the beach are your style, Costa Rica can provide – in spades. Attracting everyone from the budget-conscious retiree on a fixed income to the high-rollers looking for a getaway spot in the tropics, Costa Rica is ready to host all and any profile of expat.
These, and so many additional factors, are what’s making Costa Rica less of a secret and more of a top-rated expat destination. Why not get in on the action now and find out first hand why literally thousands upon thousands have made a piece of this tropical paradise their opportunity to move their life offshore. Call Lisle Head who is the lifestyle expert on expat living in Costa Rica at 866-403-1345