Become a Digital Nomad in Costa Rica: Your Ultimate Guide

Are you a remote worker looking for a new home in an exotic location? Costa Rica might be perfect for you with its natural beauty and friendly people. And the good news is that you can now apply for a Digital Nomad visa that allows you to stay longer than a regular tourist visa.

What is a Digital Nomad visa?

A Digital Nomad visa is a non-resident visa that allows you to work remotely and stay in Costa Rica for up to one year. This visa is renewable for an additional year if you spend at least 180 days in the country during the first year. The visa also allows you to bring your spouse and children under 25 years old with you.

What kinds of jobs are possible for a digital nomad in Costa Rica?

As a digital nomad, you can work in various fields, such as programming, digital marketing, graphic design, content creation, writing, editing, organization, and planning.

Advantages of working as a digital nomad in Costa Rica

Working remotely as a digital nomad has many advantages, including the freedom to work from any location with an internet connection. You can say goodbye to the office dress code and work in comfortable clothes. You can also enjoy a more flexible schedule and avoid wasting time in traffic jams. Working as a digital nomad in Costa Rica allows you to explore the country while you work, meet new people, and make connections.

Digital nomad visa requirements

To apply for the Digital Nomad visa in Costa Rica, you must meet certain requirements:

  1. Proof of income: You need to provide original bank statements and a signed affidavit showing a fixed income of at least $3,000 USD per month for the previous year. If you want to include your family in the application, the monthly income requirement increases to $4,000 USD.
  2. Medical insurance: You need to purchase medical insurance that covers you for at least $50,000 USD for the duration of your stay in Costa Rica.
  3. Government fee: You need to pay a fee to apply for the non-resident Digital Nomad visa.

Note that while you can work remotely for a company outside of Costa Rica, you cannot enter the local labor market and cannot compete with residents for jobs.

Additional benefits of the Digital Nomad

The Digital Nomad visa offers additional benefits besides the advantages mentioned earlier. One is driving in the country using your home country’s driver’s license as long as your digital nomad status is active. This can be very convenient for those planning to explore the country independently.

Moreover, the visa includes exempting import taxes for the importation of computers and other technical equipment needed to perform the digital nomad visa holder’s job. This can be a significant cost-saving for digital nomads who require specific equipment to work efficiently.

Overall, the Digital Nomad visa in Costa Rica provides an excellent opportunity for remote workers to live and work in one of the world’s most beautiful and welcoming countries. By providing a streamlined process to obtain a visa, a comfortable lifestyle, and numerous benefits, Costa Rica is undoubtedly one of the best countries for digital nomads to consider when choosing a new home.

How to apply for a digital nomad visa

To apply for a digital nomad visa in Costa Rica, you must follow these steps:

  1. Gather the required documents, including bank statements, a signed affidavit, proof of medical insurance, and payment for the government fee.
  2. Fill out the application form and submit it to the Costa Rican consulate in your country.
  3. Wait for the application to be processed, which can take up to 30 business days.
  4. If approved, you will receive a digital nomad visa to stay in Costa Rica for up to one year.
  5. Once in Costa Rica, you must register with the Costa Rican Social Security system and obtain medical insurance that covers you during your stay.
  6. Finally, you must spend at least 180 days in the country during the first year to be eligible for a visa renewal.

Conclusion

Becoming a digital nomad is an excellent opportunity to combine work and travel. With a digital nomad visa, you can stay in the country longer and enjoy all Costa Rica offers. The application process is straightforward, and the requirements are reasonable, making it a viable option for remote workers looking to relocate. However, it’s important to remember that while working remotely in Costa Rica, you cannot enter the local labor market or work for a Costa Rican company. If you meet the qualifications and are interested in becoming a digital nomad in Costa Rica, gather all the required documents and start the application process today.

-Written by Glenn Tellier (Founder of CRIE and Grupo Gap).

[email protected]

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Is Costa Rica good for digital nomads?

Yes, Costa Rica is a popular destination for digital nomads due to its tropical climate, natural beauty, and strong internet infrastructure. It also offers a relatively low cost of living compared to other regional destinations.

Do digital nomads pay tax in Costa Rica?

If you are working for a company based outside of Costa Rica, you are not required to pay taxes in the country. However, if you earn income from a local source or operate a business within Costa Rica, you may be subject to taxation.

Where to live in Costa Rica as a digital nomad?

Some popular areas for digital nomads in Costa Rica include the Central Valley region (including San Jose and surrounding areas), the coastal town of Tamarindo, and the southern Pacific region around Dominical and Uvita.

Is a digital nomad visa available in Costa Rica?

Yes, Costa Rica has recently introduced a Digital Nomad visa allowing foreign nationals to live and work for up to one year.

What is the lowest income requirement for a digital nomad visa?

The minimum monthly income requirement for the Digital Nomad visa in Costa Rica is $2,500 USD.

Can I work a remote job in Costa Rica?

Yes, as a digital nomad, you can work remotely for a company based outside of Costa Rica while living in the country.

Can I work in the US and live in Costa Rica?

Yes, it is possible to work for a company based in the US while living in Costa Rica as long as you have the necessary visa or legal status to work in the US.

Can I work while on vacation in Costa Rica?

Technically, you cannot work on a tourist visa in Costa Rica. However, with the Digital Nomad visa, you can work remotely while living in the country.

Can you be self-employed in Costa Rica?

Yes, being self-employed as a digital nomad is possible. However, you must meet the minimum monthly income requirement for the Digital Nomad visa or obtain a work permit to operate a business within the country.

 

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