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Your Expat Community in Costa Rica

  • Connect with fellow expats in Costa Rica

  • Join exciting events and groups for expats

  • Get information in our expat guides

  • Exchange tips about expat life in Costa Rica

  • Emanuele Casabona

    Finding other expats to share experiences in San José with, helped me a lot. Thanks to InterNations.

Welcome to the InterNations Community of Expats in Costa Rica!

¡Hola! and a warm welcome to our expat community in Costa Rica! Relocating to a new country can be both challenging and fun, but whether you're confused or excited, InterNations members are happy to share and help each other out using their knowledge and experience about living abroad. When considering your move, you may have questions like, “what is the education system like in Costa Rica?” or “what healthcare precautions do I need to take before moving to Costa Rica?” or “which area of San José is safe for a family?”. It doesn't matter how many questions you have, the InterNations expat community is happy to help answer them. With their sound advice, you can make informed decisions about your move, and turn to your fellow expats whenever you have another question. In getting to know the expat community in Costa Rica you'll also get to know some of the Costa Rican culture — from the traditional cassado to the annual Meeting of Cultures Day. And, of course, the people themselves, who are have been in exactly the same position as you and know what it takes to make a successful relocation.

With InterNations, you never stand alone. Whether you are moving to another country or going on a business trip somewhere — our communities around the world are there to make you feel at home wherever you are. Feel free to check out our vibrant InterNations Communities in countries like Germany or Peru.

Jump right in:

Living in Costa Rica: Your Questions, Answered

If you’re a new or soon-to-be expat in Costa Rica, you probably aren’t quite sure yet what it will be like. That’s why we gathered the answers to some key questions you may have about life in Costa Rica. If you want to ask more specific questions — or even share your own tips — join InterNations! You’ll be part of a community of new and experienced expats who love to help each other out.

What are the most common nationalities in Costa Rica? As an expat in Costa Rica, you'll meet people from many different cultures (especially if you're an InterNations member!) The top nationalities in the InterNations Communities in Costa Rica currently are:

  • Americans
  • Canadians
  • Venezuelans
  • Germans

Which cities are most popular among expats in Costa Rica? Some cities attract more expats than others. These are the cities with the largest expat communities in Costa Rica:

  • San José
  • Alajuela
  • Quesada

How much rent do expats pay in Costa Rica? Your personal situation plays a role here. Single expats spend on average 539 USD on their accommodation per month, while expat families spend around 963 USD. And of course, rents can also vary greatly depending on the location and city within Costa Rica.

To give you an idea of what to expect, here are some rent averages for the most popular cities in Costa Rica.

Average rent in San José

  • Single expats: 670 USD
  • Expat families: 1.354 USD

Average rent in Alajuela

  • Single expats: 405 USD
  • Expat families: 753 USD

Average rent in Quesada

  • Single expats: 421 USD
  • Expat families: 693 USD

How safe is Costa Rica? You may be wondering about safety. In general people perceive their personal safety situation in Costa Rica as rather safe. People rate the risk of falling victim to petty crime (such as pickpocketing or minor theft) as moderate. They consider the chance of being the victim of violent crime (including mugging) low. And, they rate confidence in the police force and related local authorities as low.

How safe is Costa Rica for women? Female expats rated the safety situation in Costa Rica as very safe. This is based on the feedback of expat women living in Costa Rica (rather than actual crime statistics). So obviously this can be highly subjective and depends on factors such as where people live.

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Learn about Expat Life in Costa Rica

Costa Rica has two coastlines, the Pacific and the Caribbean, which means there are plenty of beaches to enjoy on your weekends off. Costa Rica is also full of other natural paradises, such as vast rainforest, which makes up a quarter of its land, and volcanoes. Costa Rica is home to a small number of exciting urban areas and cities, such as the capital San José, the commercial hub of Costa Rica, Quepos, the heart of the Manuel Antonio National Park, and Limon, the soul of the Caribbean. Expats in Costa Rica feel safe, happy and have lots to do in their leisure time. Costa Ricans, or Ticos, are said to have the highest quality of life in Central America. Its peaceful landscape is reflected in the way the country is run; with excellent infrastructure and a high emphasis on sustainability, Costa Rica has a greater biodiversity than the US and Europe put together. Costa Rica's main economy revolves around its large export trade of bananas, coffee, sugar, and beef. It's also a key destination on the eco-tourism trail, and considering its political stability and good education levels, Costa Rica has one of the highest levels of foreign investment per capita in Latin America. There is still around 20% to 25% poverty in Costa Rica, so many expats move to Costa Rica to teach English, photograph wildlife and teach yoga, among many other occupations.

InterNations is the largest global network for expatriates, with communities in 420 cities around the world. Meet fellow global minds in your city of residence or get to know local expatriates before you're moving or traveling abroad and never feel like a stranger. InterNations makes it easy for you to stay in touch with your expat friends, both online and offline, so you can grow your network of friends and contacts from all over the world. Whether they live in Malaysia or France, InterNations allows you to be close to them even if they are miles away.

Your Friendly Network for Expats in Costa Rica

Be safe in the knowledge that every InterNations member has been approved by us and dedicated to upholding our community as a safe place to network and connect with people from around the world. By joining InterNations, you are becoming a part of a community of like-minded, international people who you can connect and exchange with online, and also meet up with in person. At our monthly events, you can get to know your fellow expats face-to-face. You can also join one or more of the incredible groups that we offer catering to a wide range of hobbies and interests. Meet up face-to-face with other expats in Costa Rica over dinner or coffee and brunch, or if you're looking to network in the city, join San José's Power Net-Weaving Group for entrepreneurs. If you want to try something new, why not sign up for San José's Latin Dancers Group? It doesn't matter how good (or bad) you are — this group is open to everyone! Knowing you'll have social events to attend and hobbies to pick up in your new country makes moving to a new place that much easier. By making new friends from the beginning, you'll have people around who can help you with any ups and downs you might have before, during, and after your move, and you'll be able to share your experiences with them. Make your new life in Costa Rica complete with the Costa Rican expat community.

Join Our Online and In-Person Events in Costa Rica

Attend our many events to get to know like-minded expats, both in Costa Rica and around the world! Our new online events even let you find connection and inspiration without leaving your home.

Let’s meet beside Belén, Heredia, the city of flowers! Join us this next Friday, May 31st in our InterNations event at Restaurante Hoyo 19 at the Cariari Country Club from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM. Come an

Want to see all the upcoming events in Costa Rica?

Connect with Like-Minded Expatriates in Costa Rica

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    From Austria, living in San José
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    From Mexico, living in San José
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    From Argentina, living in San José
  • Community Member
    From United States of America, living in San José
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    From Canada, living in San José
  • Community Member
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Meet other expats like you in Costa Rica

Our Global Partners

Share your hobbies and interests with expats in Costa Rica

  • Emanuele Casabona

    Finding other expats to share experiences in San José with, helped me a lot. Thanks to InterNations.

  • Victoria Arrington

    When I first heard about InterNations, I thought: This is exactly what I was searching for. What a great site.

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