Welcome to our blog on becoming a digital nomad in Costa Rica! This small country, located in Central America, might be the perfect destination for you if you’re a young adult looking to escape the traditional career path and work remotely while exploring a new country. With its stunning natural beauty, friendly locals, and relatively low cost of living, Costa Rica has become a popular choice for digital nomads of all ages. In this blog, we’ll introduce you to what it’s like to be a digital nomad in Costa Rica as a young adult and provide tips and resources to help you get started. Whether you’re looking to live in Costa Rica long-term or take a short-term working vacation, this guide will help you navigate the challenges and opportunities of life as a digital nomad in this tropical paradise.

There is a New Law for Digital Nomads in Costa Rica

On Monday, July 4, 2022, the Regulation to Law 10008, named “Law to Attract Remote Workers and Providers of International Services,” was signed as the Law of Digital Nomads. With the regulation already in force, the requisites to apply as digital nomads are established. These regulations seek the economic reactivation of the country and encourage foreign workers to work in Costa Rica and to have remote work while enjoying the tourist attractions.

This new regulation allows foreign workers (digital nomads) not to face a tedious procedure before the General Direction of Migration and Immigration, the public institution in charge of processing the applications of digital nomads who want to work in our country.

Articles 2 and 4 of said Regulation are relevant because they establish a new migratory category for digital nomads, called “Worker or Remote Service Provider.” The digital nomad is the foreign person who “provides remunerated services remotely, in a subordinate manner or not, using a computer, telecommunications or similar means, in favor of a natural person or legal entity who is abroad, for which he receives a payment or remuneration from abroad for a minimum amount of three thousand US dollars per month ($3,000.00) and in case of requesting legal stay for their dependents of four thousand dollars per month ($4,000.00) (…).”

Digital nomads will have tax benefits such as exemption from payment of import taxes on personal computer equipment or total exemption from tax on utilities related to the income they receive from abroad.

Requisites for Digital Nomads Visa

Essential requirements to fulfill as a digital nomad are in articles 5, 7, and 8 of the Regulation, among them:

  • Proof of payment of one hundred dollars (USD$100) in favor of the Costa Rican government.
  • Images of the valid passport pages of the foreign person showing his/her photograph, personal data, and entry stamp to Costa Rica if the person has already entered the country.
  • Bank account statements accompanied by an affidavit stating that the financial statements were requested and obtained from the corresponding banking entity and indicating that the person has received an income from abroad for a minimum amount of three thousand dollars monthly during the last year ($3,000.00) or in case of requesting legal permanence for their dependents of four thousand dollars monthly in the previous year ($4,000.00).
  • Every foreign document that is provided must have an official translation into Spanish, made by a Notary Public or official Costa Rican translator.
  • Finally, when the migratory condition is granted, the foreign person will be able to enter Costa Rica and have three months to attend a face-to-face appointment where the photograph of the corresponding migratory document will be taken. For this appointment, the person shall provide the following:
  • Proof of payment of $90 for the issuance of the immigration document.
  • A valid passport and in good condition.
  • Medical Services Policy covers the applicant and his dependents for the entire stay in the country for at least fifty thousand dollars ($50,000.00).

Best Places to Live for a Digital Nomad in Costa Rica

Besides the practical considerations, many digital nomads choose Costa Rica because of its natural beauty and rich culture. The country is home to many national parks, reserves, beautiful beaches, and bustling cities.

Whether you are just starting as a digital nomad or are an experienced remote worker, Costa Rica is a great destination to consider. With its tax exemptions, strong internet connectivity, and natural beauty, it is no wonder that it has become such a popular choice among digital nomads. So, as a new member of the community of digital nomads in Costa Rica, the first question is where I will live and work.

Costa Rica offers beautiful places where to live; whether you want to stay in Costa Rica for the long term or for the short term,

As follow, you can find a suggestion of the best place in Costa Rica, where you can live and work

  • San Jose: As the capital and largest city in Costa Rica, San Jose offers a more urban environment and a wider range of amenities, including coworking spaces and reliable internet connectivity.
  • Manuel Antonio: Located on the Pacific coast, Manuel Antonio is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful beaches and national park. It has a lively expat community and a variety of accommodation options.
  • Tamarindo: Another popular beach destination on the Pacific coast, Tamarindo is known for its surf culture and has a variety of cafes, restaurants, and coworking spaces.
  • Nosara: Located on the Nicoya Peninsula, Nosara is a small town known for its yoga retreats and eco-tourism. It has a laid-back vibe and a strong expat community.
  • Monteverde: Located in the mountains, Monteverde is known for its cloud forests and outdoor adventure activities. It has a small-town feel and a cooler climate.
  • Puerto Viejo. it is one of the best locations on the Caribbean coast, where you will be surrounded by exuberant nature and beautiful beaches. In this location, You will be part not only of a strong digital nomad community but also, but a strong foreign community

Do I need a Digital Nomad Visa to Enter Costa Rica?

You can enter the country with a Tourist Visa, where usually you will be allowed to stay 90 days in, and later, you then you can apply for digital nomad status for a period of 90 days in Costa Rica

Digital nomads have become a common sight in Costa Rica, with many choosing this Central American country as their destination of choice. The country’s stunning natural beauty, affordable cost of living, and strong internet connectivity make it an attractive place for those looking to work remotely.
One of the major draws for digital nomads in Costa Rica is that they are exempt from most taxes as long as they are not physically present in the country for 183 days or more per year. This means that digital nomads can take advantage of Costa Rica’s low living cost without worrying about paying taxes on their income.

Internet Providers

Those who are already in Costa Rica will find a good number of internet providers available to choose from. The Costa Rican Embassy can provide information on the different providers and help with any issues that may arise.
Internet providers in Costa Rica range from small, local companies to large international corporations, so digital nomads have a wide range of options. Some popular providers include Claro, Liberty, and ICE, all of which offer a variety of packages and speeds to suit different needs and budgets.

Do the Digital Nomads in Costa Rica Need to Pay Taxes?

After you get your digital nomad visa for Costa Rica, you can start to work. Based on the new law for digital nomads, as long as you stay in the Country, you don’t need to pay any income tax or any tax on your salary, which is a very good incentive, adding to the cost of living in Costa Rica, is lower than some other countries.

Can I Bring my Family with Me? 

Yes, you can bring your family with you. In such a case, the rest of the family members must be filed as dependent from the person who shows an income of $4.000 per month. All the members who will apply must comply with the same requisites as the main applicant.