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Relaxing In Costa Rica With Your Digital Nomad Visa

4 min read

Relaxing In Costa Rica With Your Digital Nomad Visa

Costa Rica is a popular tourist destination for Americans and Canadians interested in Central America. Costa Rica is well known as a popular ecotourism destination because of its biodiversity. 80% of tourists who visit Costa Rica visit because of ecotourism. Costa Rica has diverse habitats, including rainforests, mangrove forests, and beaches, and has hundreds of different types of birds and mammals in the country. Approximately 28% of the country has been set aside as a protected natural area.

In the past, it took a lot of work for expats to spend extended time in Costa Rica, and most people who visited stayed for several weeks or a couple of months. However, digital nomads can now spend up to one year in Costa Rica with the country’s new digital nomad visa. This digital nomad visa is an excellent option if you want to spend time in nature and explore Costa Rica.


Relájate En Costa Rica Con Tu Visa De Nómada Digital (1)

Costa Rica has 300 different beaches to explore while there


The new Costa Rica digital nomad visa program is for remote workers, business owners, and freelancers who want to live in Costa Rica for one year. Like most digital nomad visa programs, you can't work for companies in Costa Rica on this visa. There is a separate visa, the Costa Rica Work Visa if you want to work for a local company. One major benefit of this digital nomad visa is that you can bring your family with you, like Antigua And Barbuda’s digital nomad visa, which also allows you to bring the family. If you do this, you must prove you have a relatively higher income and provide additional supporting documentation.

Other benefits include the fact that you can open a local bank account in Costa Rica and you can drive in the country using your local license. This digital nomad visa also has relatively lower income requirements and does not require too much supporting documentation. It is also easy to extend your visa for another year if one year of exploring Costa Rica doesn’t feel like enough. Another benefit is that you do not have to pay taxes on your foreign income while in Costa Rica.


Related content: Living In Ecuador With Your Digital Nomad Visa


You can spend one year in Costa Rica with your digital nomad visa

You can spend one year in Costa Rica with your digital nomad visa


Costa Rica has a pleasant climate if you prefer warmer weather. The average annual temperature is between 26-32 Celsius by the coast and 23-26 Celsius in other parts of the country. The entire country has more than 800 miles of coastline and 300 different beaches to visit. There are also 28 national parks in Costa Rica; three are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Another popular tourist attraction is Golfo Dulce Bay, a famous bioluminescent bay.

Costa Rica has a relatively low cost of living, although some tourist destinations can be expensive. However, expats from places like Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom will find Costa Rica is much cheaper than their home country. The minimum salary in Costa Rica is over $500 USD/month, while the average salary is around $830 USD/month. Two-bedroom apartments in cities like San Jose can start at $500 USD/month but cost more if it is more luxury and located in the city center. If you qualify for the program, then the cost of living should not be a burden if you live in San Jose and travel a lot.


Related content: The Basics Of How To Get A Second Passport Or A Second Residency


Enjoy the ecotourism in Costa Rica with your digital nomad visa

Enjoy the ecotourism in Costa Rica with your digital nomad visa


If you meet the eligibility criteria for the digital nomad visa program in Costa Rica, you can start looking at requirements and applying. One of the main factors to consider is the income requirements of this program. You need to make at least $3,000 USD a month to be eligible for this digital nomad visa. If you want to bring family members, then the financial requirements are $4,000 USD/month. It is also worth noting that the income amount needs to be stable each month for the six months preceding the application. This may be a challenge for some digital nomads who are just starting or have irregular client work. Applicants must also prove that they have health insurance covering Costa Rica during their stay. If you are bringing your family, they all also need health insurance.

To apply, you need to submit the following documentation:

  • Copy of your passport;
  • Supporting documentation to show you meet the income requirements ( bank
    statements, pay slips, tax returns, etc.);
  • Consular/restricted visa, which will allow you to enter the country and apply for a
    residence permit in the county;
  • Health insurance policy documents. The policy must be valid for one year.
  • Other information may be requested.

At the moment, there are also additional forms that you need to fill out, and these forms are in Spanish. You have to complete them whether you apply in person or online. These forms include the Non-Residency Stay Form, Proof of Informed Consent, and a form with information about any dependents. These forms are short, and one only requires a signature. It is best to monitor this to see if the process changes or if some of these documents are translated online.

Once you apply, you should hear back in two weeks. The application cost is initially $190 USD, and you must pay an additional fee once accepted and before entering Costa Rica. If your family is travelling with you, they will also need to provide additional documentation. The income documentation that you provide should show that you make $4,000 USD/month, regardless of the number of family members. You will also need to provide a marriage certificate and a birth certificate for any of your children coming with you. You also need to provide a document from a recognized Civil Registry that verifies your marriage. Once you receive approval and enter Costa Rica, you must make appointments to finalize the process. You have 90 days to do this and can complete the process with an immigration official in San Jose.


Tortuga Island is a popular destination in Costa Rica

Tortuga Island is a popular destination in Costa Rica


After nearly eight months, Costa Rica has finalized the legal framework needed to launch this digital nomad visa. This visa allows you to stay in Costa Rica for one year and enjoy the abundant ecotourism that Costa Rica has to offer. If you are interested in the outdoors, this is one of the best digital nomad visas in Central America for you to consider. Living in Costa Rica for one year could also give you more time to explore other residency programs that Costa Rica offers, including programs for retirees or investors.


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Mikkel Thorup

Written by Mikkel Thorup

Mikkel Thorup is the world’s most sought-after expat consultant. He focuses on helping high-net-worth private clients to legally mitigate tax liabilities, obtain a second residency and citizenship, and assemble a portfolio of foreign investments including international real estate, timber plantations, agricultural land and other hard-money tangible assets. Mikkel is the Founder and CEO at Expat Money®, a private consulting firm started in 2017. He hosts the popular weekly podcast, the Expat Money Show, and wrote the definitive #1-Best Selling book Expat Secrets - How To Pay Zero Taxes, Live Overseas And Make Giant Piles Of Money, and his second book: Expats Guide On Moving To Mexico.

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