Costa Rica
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Top Costa Rica

Living In Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a popular destination for everyone from wealthy retirees to budget-minded ex-pats, with good reason. A stable government, good healthcare, gorgeous scenery, and a thriving community of transplants makes it one of the best Latin America countries for those in search of a new home. One of the main attractions – and the reason that so many North American and European vacation homes line the coast – is that Costa Rica gives foreigners most of the same property rights as natives, regardless of their nationality and immigration status. Although there is a big real estate market for foreigners interested in investing in houses or property, the more budget-minded can easily find a house or apartment just to rent.

Those who worry about primitive Central American healthcare need not fear in Costa Rica. It is known as having some of the best hospitals and doctors in Latin America. For a monthly fee, usually around $60 dollars, foreign residents can become part of the public healthcare system, where everything from drugs to dentistry is included. For a little more, you can also join a private system, many of which are renown for having highly trained doctors and modern medical equipment.

Costa Rica is simple to visit – all you need to enter the country is a valid passport, no matter your nationality. It is possible to extend a 90-day stay by leaving the country for 72 hours, which is the residency route than many ex-pats choose to take, although you might be asked to present a bank statement or return flight or bus ticket at the border. Residency visa requirements for Costa Rica underwent a change in March 2010; the monthly income needed to qualify for the two most popular residency categories – pensioner and small investor – now stands at $1000/month (formerly $600) and $2,500/month (formerly $1000), respectively. If the increased rates daunt you, don't lose hope; residency laws in Latin America tend to be in constant and drastic fluctuation, so they may well change again. That being said, it is a good idea for anyone interested in moving to Costa Rica (or who is already living there, for that matter) to check the current residency and immigrations rules regularly.

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Costa Rica: When to Go, Services, Things To See And Do, Things to do and see, Tour Operator Summary, Things To See And Do, Safety, Safety, Accommodation Summary and Safety.

27 Oct 2010

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