Costa Rica News – Although Costa Rica offers a high quality of life, the purchasing power you get when moving here is still great. You can get a nice deal when buying real estate here. It is more expensive than other Latin American countries but the security of living in such a peaceful paradise makes it worth the little extra. There are still bargains to be found if you know where to look.
The costs of local goods and services in San Jose are some of the lowest found world-wide. In all of the Americas, only Ecuador beats Costa Rica in this arena. Panama City or Guatemala City cost 14% more! The bills for utilities are 30% less in Costa Rica than in the U.S. In addition, you most likely won’t need heat or A/C because of the perfect climate found in most parts of the country. Even extra housing costs, like a live in maid, are affordable. This service would cost only a few hundred dollars a month.
Housing expenses are not the only factor in the cost of living, of course. Bus transportation can get you around the city for about 50 cents. They can get you to the farthest parts of the country for $10. A car is unnecessary but if you have one note that a gallon of gas is $4.75 because of export from Mexico and Venezuela. Buying a car in the country, however, can cost twice the actual value!
Food costs more than in the States because it’s mostly imported, although fresh fruits and produce can be found inexpensively from local farmers. Health care and education are high quality and low cost. Entertainment is a real steal; think $3 to see a new movie!
Once you meet people, make connections, learn the language and the average prices, and get settled you will find ways to lower your cost of living every day. Costa Ricans are resourceful in stretching their available income! They are also friendly, so they’d be happy to share their ideas with you.
Those accustomed to a moderate lifestyle in the States should expect to need $1200-$1500 per month. A couple can even live well on $1800 or more luxuriously for $2500. Lower classes in Costa Rica survive on $500 monthly, so if you are coming here with a foreign pension you will be more than fine.
By Kerry La