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Visa & Residency Guide to Costa Rica

Want to know how to live in Costa Rica on a tourist visa or with residency?

This article will provide you with the basics of how to achieve that.

 By first talking about living in Costa Rica on a tourist visa…

Then moving onto the nuances of that…

Such as the possibility of doing a visa run….

And also the consequences of overstaying your visa…

Before ending it on the topic of the temporary and permanent residency programs that exist.

For those who wish to live in this country longer than what a tourist visa allows…

And do to so legally and with more security.

So let’s get to it!

Tourist Visa in Costa Rica

You will be allowed in Costa Rica for 90 days once you arrive.

Overstay the Visa?

If you overstay the visa in Costa Rica, you will be required to pay a fine of about 100 USD per month that you overstayed.

However, if you do not pay the fine, then you will be banned from entering Costa Rica for three times the number of months that you were overstaying your visa.

Visa Run?

From what I have read online, visa runs in Costa Rica seem quite common and are definitely possible to do.

So once your 90 days are up, just get on a bus or flight out of the country and come back when you want to get another 90 days.

Temporary Residency in Costa Rica

If you are thinking of getting temporary residency in Costa Rica, then there are different groups that you can fall under, such as:

  • Work visa where you have a contract to work for a specific employer in Costa Rica.
  • Rentista visa where you are earning at least a 2,500 USD a month from investments, savings or elsewhere for two years or you deposit 60,000 USD into a Costa Rican bank account.
  • A visa with the pensionado program where you are retired and collecting 1,000 USD or more per month.
  • An investment visa where you invested at least 200,000 USD into Costa Rica.

Permanent Residency in Costa Rica

You can get permanent residency in Costa Rica if you have been living in Costa Rica for 3 years with temporary residency.

Otherwise, you can also get permanent residency if you are a first degree relative of a Costa Rican citizen.

This can also mean, from my understanding, marrying a Costa Rican citizen as well.

And that’s all the basic info!

Got any questions or comments? Drop them below.

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Best regards,


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