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19 Pros And Cons Of Living In Costa Rica (Expat Advice)

19 Pros And Cons Of Living In Costa Rica (Expat Advice)

Costa Rica is a riveting place and it’s commonly associated with good weather, fun, and of course its scenic sights.

The country has lots to offer and it is renowned for being full of historic regions that are going to spark your interest if you’re a history buff.

It’s essential to look into the pros and cons of living in Costa Rica for those who are thinking about moving to Central America and want to enjoy the perks of this lovely nation.

We have taken the time to go through the advantages and disadvantages of living in Costa Rica if this is an option you are considering.

Pros Of Living In Costa Rica

Gorgeous Beaches

It’s best to start with the beaches of Costa Rica.

When moving to Costa Rica as an expat, you are going to have one eye on the lovely beaches. Just being able to soak in the sun, lounge on the warm sand, and hear the rustles of the waves can be quite an enthralling experience.

This is why it’s best to look at the top beaches of Costa Rica for those who want to make the most of their time in the country.

Pleasant Weather

The weather here is exceptional.

Most people are going to want to stay in a region that is welcoming and is going to be pleasant for most parts of the year.

While it does rain here a bit, you will still like living in Costa Rica as an expat over the long haul. This is due to the excellent weather.

Welcoming Residents

The residents are a serious plus point for expats moving to Costa Rica.

We have taken the time to visit various parts of the nation and the type of people you are going to get to speak to in this part of Central America are going to impress you.

They are welcoming and more than happy to show you around. This helps you move to a new country and get a lay of the land.

Great For Retirement

Retiring abroad is going to require a bit of research on your part.

Costa Rica is an exemplary nation, which means you are going to have lots to do here. The beaches, beautiful sights, and just the warmth of the people are going to entice you when you are here.

However, it is also well-designed for retirees. You are going to enjoy your time here and the weather is going to allow you to have quite a bit of fun too.

Good Healthcare

Most people are going to have one eye on the healthcare system when it’s time to move to a new country.

You don’t want to get stuck in a situation where your health is not good and you end up having to go through hurdles to receive adequate healthcare.

For the most part, the healthcare system is excellent in Costa Rica. The quality is good, but you will have some regions where the lines are going to be longer than others.

Stable Politics

The political situation is quite stable in Costa Rica.

Expats moving to Costa Rica will rarely have to worry about the political landscape of the nation. This does help anyone who wants to feel stable and secure when they are moving to a nation in Central America such as Costa Rica.

Compared to other nations, you are not going to have to worry about that here.


The cost of living is reasonable in Costa Rica.

Expats staying in Costa Rica are going to be budgeting just like anyone else. We find this to be a reasonably priced country whether you are looking to go grocery shopping or just want to rent a home in Costa Rica.

Whatever you are looking to do, you are going to have affordable options to choose from and that’s what makes it beneficial as an expat.

Natural Beauty

The natural beauty is exceptional here.

Costa Rica is indeed one of the more beautiful nations on the planet and you are going to adore the tropical nature of this place.

The vivid greenery, open spaces, and overall elegant beaches are going to blow you away. There aren’t too many places that are as scenic as this when you begin to explore the uniqueness of Costa Rica.

Close To The US

Most people are going to be looking at living in Costa Rica as Americans.

This happens and it’s normal for a lot of Americans to come to Costa Rica because of how close it is to their homeland.

If that is something you do care about, you will like being in Costa Rica. It’s not a long flight back home and this will make it easier for those who have family in the US and want to go back and forth from time to time.

Great Food

The food is world-class in Costa Rica.

This is true for most parts of Central America and the same goes for this country. Costa Rica has lots of local dishes that are appetizing and are going to fill you up as soon as you begin to explore the local eateries.

We have spent a lot of time going to different restaurants and it does not get better than this for those who want quality food.

Cons Of Living In Costa Rica

Rainy Periods

There are going to be periods of rain in Costa Rica.

This is not a consistent issue but you are going to have to be prepared for certain times of the year when it’s going to rain more than others.

Most people will tend to stay indoors during these periods but it is manageable for those who do get used to it.

Slow Government Agencies

This is one concern that has been noted about staying in Costa Rica.

When it is time to deal with the government agencies in the nation, you are going to have to go through numerous hurdles and it does take a toll on you.

A lot of people are going to have to face long lines and that is often quite frustrating.

Average Public Transit

The public transit system is still being developed and it is only useful in larger cities.

Otherwise, the public transit system is not good enough and does disappoint. You are going to have longer waits and the routes are not going to be as efficient as they need to be.

This leads to longer walks and it is not ideal for those who are looking to be somewhere on time.

Poor Infrastructure

The first thing you are going to notice when you are in Costa Rica is going to be the infrastructure. It’s not good enough and that’s frustrating for those who want to live in a place where it’s easy to drive.

This is not going to be the case in Costa Rica.

The roads have potholes and tend to be broken down more often than not.

Long Delivery Times

The delivery times are going to get on a person’s nerves if they are looking to get items shipped out to Costa Rica from other parts of the world.

There are a few reasons for this.

The first reason is going to be simply due to the distance between other nations and Costa Rica. However, it’s also going to have to do with internal management when it comes to getting the package to where it needs to go.

Poor Time Management

The time management issues that are rampant throughout Costa Rica are going to frustrate a person.

This is due to people not doing things on time.

If you are looking to run a business in Costa Rica, you are going to have to adjust to this reality. Otherwise, you are going to be left waiting a lot more than you want to.

Chances Of Natural Disasters

Earthquakes have been mentioned as a concern in Costa Rica.

Now, this does not mean you are going to be dealing with natural disasters all the time. It is going to happen once in a while and that is simply due to how Costa Rica is set up.

It’s on a fault line, so the chances of an earthquake go up in these parts.

Lack Of Road Regulations

The road regulations are not as good as they need to be.

This is due to the lack of enforcement on the part of the police. This causes drivers to become more aggressive with their driving and that leads to the breaking of rules.

It’s best to be aware of this because road regulations are not on par with the rest of the world.

Poor Driving

The driving standards are not bad and this has to do with the poor road regulations.

If you are looking at safe driving, you are not going to find it here as often as you would want to. It’s best to be a good, defensive driver here if you are going to get behind the wheel.

Final Thoughts

These are the top pros and cons of living in Costa Rica.

We do believe living in Costa Rica is a great option for those who want to retire or just like the idea of being in a warm nation.

The people are friendly, the food is great, and you are going to have a wonderful time for as long as you stay here.

We also recommend visiting the best ancient ruins in Central America, spending time in Belize, and looking at the best nations to live in with little money.