Did you know? Costa Rica falls under the category of happiest countries in the world. Right from its colorful currencies to its world-renowned beaches, there is no doubt why most digital nomads choose to land in this country. Known for its massive biodiversity and world-class coffee beans, Costa Rica is truly a breathtaking place!
If you are someone who enjoys tropical weather, there is no reason you wouldn’t love this amazing country in Central America. With its pleasant climate year-round, amazing food, and serene land, anyone can work in Costa Rica with a peaceful mind. And when it comes to taking a break from work and treating yourself to a crazy night out, Costa Rica won’t disappoint you either!
Despite the many great things Costa Rica has to offer, moving from the comfort of one country to another can be quite intimidating for most people. You need to consider many factors like the cost of living, traveling expenses, food, coworking space, etc. But don’t you worry! I’m here to take you through almost everything you need to know about Costa Rica.
If your next destination is Costa Rica and you want to learn everything that goes around in the country, read on!
Costa Rica for digital nomad at a glance
Living in Costa Rica is not as cheap as compared to other countries in Central America. This is why most digital nomads spend around a month or two in the country and move into other neighboring places with relatively cheaper cost of living.
However, for digital nomads willing to spend a little extra, I can’t think of a better place than the sandy beaches of Costa Rica with mesmerizing sunrises and sunsets. Even the thought of working in a country that contributes 5% of the entire earth’s biodiversity while surrounded by lush greenery, is something nobody can resist.
Costa Rica lies not very far from Canada and the US. Thus, if you’re someone who doesn’t like to travel too far away from home, Costa Rica can be your go-to destination! Costa Rica is the ultimate choice for digital nomads who want an escape from the busy streets of mainland cities and work in a more exotic environment.
- Pleasant weather year-round
- Some of the most mesmerizing beaches
- Lush greenery
- Delicious food
- Diverse culture
- Considered to be among the happiest countries in the world
- Living cost is relatively higher than in other neighboring countries
- The internet facility is not the best in Costa Rica.
Cost of Living in Costa Rica
As said earlier, Costa Rica does not fall among the destinations with cheaper cost of living. However, it is a popular choice among digital nomads, expats, and tourists due to the many other factors the country has in store. Right from peaceful working environments to a rich sense of outdoor serenity, Costa Rica is worth every colon you spend.
The cost of living in the country varies from one nomad to another depending on factors like accommodation, city, food, travel, etc. However, here is a general estimation for the monthly cost of living in Costa Rica:
- Accommodation – $500- $1000
- Fooding – $400
- Internet and Phone Bills – $75
- Transportation (Taxi, bus, car rental) – $150
- Entertainment (Gym, drinks, nightlife, tours) – $250
Altogether, the maximum monthly expenses in the country may come up to $1875. However, remember that this is just a general estimation, and the cost of living may vary depending upon the city you live in and your standard of living.
Also, the above estimation is without the electricity bills because that solely depends on where you live. For example, if you choose to live on the coasts, it is obvious that you’ll be using an air conditioner throughout the day. This can cost you around $300 monthly only on electricity for a small condo with a single AC.
Internet Facilities in Costa Rica
This is one aspect where Costa Rica falls behind most other countries. For digital nomads, the internet is a must-have as that’s where all the travel expenses come from. It is quite difficult to get good internet connections in the country. Of course, the internet facility in Costa Rica is improving, but it still lacks behind as compared to other neighboring countries. In a certain report, Costa Rica was ranked 117 out of 207 countries in terms of the countries’ internet system.
The internet speed is not bad in all cities. The average internet speed of Costa Rica lies at 4.52 Mbps. However, if you’re lucky, you may even find a few spots with 10 Mbps and above speed.
If you’re thinking about the public Wi-Fi facilities in Costa Rica, it is quite challenging. When it comes to restaurants providing free Wi-Fi and the overall cafe culture, Costa Rica still has a long way to go!
Also, if you’re renting an apartment in the country, make sure to inquire about the internet facility first. High chances are, you’ll have to put the internet connection by yourself!
Some of the most popular internet providers in Costa Rica include Kolbi, Cable Tica, Tigo, and Claro. Kolbi is the main internet provider in the country with a monthly fee of around $50 for 50 Mbps.
The Weather in Costa Rica
The pleasant weather of Costa Rica makes this country a popular choice among most digital nomads. Since Costa Rica lies quite close to the equator, the country has tropical weather without a true winter season.
Most digital nomads come and dwell in Costa Rica to escape the harsh cold winter of other countries. Costa Rica’s climate is typically categorized into two seasons – dry season (high season) and a rainy season (green season). If your next stop is Costa Rica, I recommend visiting the city during the dry season. Rainy season can adversely affect the electricity in the country. And if you do not have a good battery backup and a router, you may fall behind in your work.
When in Costa Rica, you can expect to see a lot of vibrant sunny days throughout the year. The country is blessed with around twelve hours of sunshine every day.
Costa Rica lies between the magnificent Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Thus, location also plays an important role in the varying climatic conditions in different regions of the country. For instance, Tortuguero being closest to the Caribbean Sea has a more humid and wet weather condition. On the other hand, the province of Guanacaste, which lies near the Pacific Ocean, experiences dry weather and is rich in tropical dry forests.
Finding Places to Stay in Costa Rica
Finding a place to stay in Costa Rica can seem like a challenge if you’re getting around the country for the first time. However, with a push in the right direction, it is not that hard to find good accommodation in Costa Rica. Here are some of the best ways to find a place in the country:
Airbnb is the go-to for most digital nomads for finding accommodations in almost any country. Airbnb offers some of the best places in Costa Rica at reasonable prices. You can find great apartments and neighborhood buildings that offer temporary rentals.
Whether you want a private condo or an entire two-bedroom apartment, Airbnb has many options under its belt. However, before renting places on Airbnb, make sure to contact the owners directly, and do your research right.
Costa Rica Facebook Groups
Facebook groups are a great way of not only finding accommodation in the country but also networking. You can join Facebook groups like Expats in Costa Rica and ask them to recommend some nice places to stay as per your budget. You can also interact with people on these groups to get a nice idea about what goes around in the country.
Costa Ricans, or the Ticos and Ticas as they call themselves, are mostly friendly and outgoing people. Thus, you won’t have a hard time communicating with them, provided that you know a little bit of their national language, Spanish. However, if you have no clue about talking in Spanish, it is best for you to stick to tourist spots like Santa Teresa, Samara, and Tamarindo.
Hostels are not only the go-to for budget-friendly accommodations but also a great way of meeting new people. Not all hostels in Costa Rica are available online. Thus, it’d be great if you could get around in the country, interact with the locals, and find one.
You can check sites like HostelWorld to check if there are any hostels open for reservations. Also, if you’re someone who does not wish to share a room, great news for you as hostels in Costa Rica offers private rooms.
The Top destinations for digital nomads in Costa Rica
Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
If you love beaches, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca can be your dream destination in Costa Rica. It is a beautiful little town situated near the Caribbean Sea, filled with plenty of beaches, wildlife, and a great nightlife. Thus, there is never a boring day in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca. This is also a great place to get away from the bustling cities and enjoy a more peaceful environment amidst nature.
Samara is the ultimate destination for digital nomads who have a great interest in beaches, surfing, and yoga. It is only two hours away from the Liberia International Airport and is a great town to be in. If you’re a keen surfer or want to learn how to surf, Samara is your go-to.
Santa Teresa is another distant beach town located in the Nicoya Peninsula. If you’re someone who wants to enjoy nature at its purest form, you’ll love the rural beach setting in Santa Teresa. This is the perfect destination for people wanting to be completely away from all the hassles of city life.
Here is a destination for the city people! If you’re not a beach person and want to stay among the city lights, your first choice can be the beautiful city of San Jose. It is not only the capital city of Costa Rica but also the largest.
You can call Tamarindo as a destination for young and vibrant digital nomads. It has tons of great attractions for backpackers and surfers. Thus, the town of Tamarindo is a popular choice among young expats and nomads.
Costa Rica is an exceptional destination for digital nomads. No matter your preferences, you’re bound to find something in the country that fits your likings. Whether you’re someone who enjoys beaches and wildlife or wants to live in the bustling city streets, Costa Rica can offer you both!