It’s no real secret of why so many Americans end up living in Costa Rica. After a week vacation in Costa Rica, lounging on beautiful, sun kissed beaches, with monkeys, sloths, toucans, and parrots playing in the trees overhead, eating fresh fruit daily, and spending time soaking up all the beauty that abounds in this tiny country, you can see why most people who do visit Costa Rica end up asking themselves how can I move there? For many, Costa Rica living for Americans is a dream, a fantasy that could never become real, but in actuality, there are plenty of Americans who do turn that dream into a reality and move to Costa Rica. Living in Costa Rica is not for everyone, but if you think it might be for you, consider some of the realities of living aboard.
Many people imagine that living in Costa Rica is like spending every day in heaven, and to some extent that’s true. But you have to keep in mind the reality of what living in Costa Rica means. One of the reasons that so many Americans fall in love with Costa Rica is because of its wild and untamed beauty. There are very few places left in the world where the natural environment is still so closely situated to residencies. While it’s amazing to witness monkeys hanging out in the trees above your house, or see toucans eating fruit from your front yard, there is also a more pesky side to Costa Rica’s wild side. Living in Costa Rica means sharing space with all of the critters, not just the cute ones. Termites, bats, rats, scorpions, spiders, snakes, mosquitoes, and cockroaches abound and if you own a house, chances are you’ll have just as many encounters with these less cuddly creatures as you will with the cuddly ones. You can’t have the monkeys without the mosquitoes. But, not to fear, if you absolutely love Costa Rica and have your heart set on moving here, you can always chose to live in a more metropolitan region of the country like the central valley where you won’t see as many sloths, but you won’t have to worry about termites eating your house either.
It’s not just the natural environment that can take some adjusting to with Costa Rica living for Americans. There are other things that can be difficult for Americans who decide to take the plunge and move aboard. There is the issue of the language barrier. Spanish is the national language of Costa Rica and while there are quite a few Costa Ricans who speak English, you will find yourself hard pressed to communicate through daily activities if you don’t bother to learn a little of the local language. Many of the popular locations that most Americans end up living in have well established expat communities, so while you will be able to make plenty of friends in your native language, handling business like going to the bank, registering and insuring your car, visiting a doctor or dentist may still require some basic Spanish skills.
While there are some adjustments that you will have to make with Costa Rica living for Americans, one thing to keep in mind is that moving to a foreign country is an adventure. And all adventures have good points and difficult ones, but as long as you’re ready for an adventure, you’ll enjoy the challenges of living in Costa Rica. Please contact us with any questions about finding a condo or home in paradise.