Average Costa Rica Salaries in 2024: List of minimum wage, labor law regulations, etc.

If you are an entrepreneur or human resources manager or will invest in our country, you need to know about this year’s minimum wages and other aspects. This article explores wages, labor laws, and the overall employment landscape in Costa Rica for 2024.

1. Unveiling Costa Rica’s Salary Landscape

a. Exploring Average Salaries in Costa Rica

Costa Rica boasts a burgeoning economy and a skilled workforce in Central America. The average salary for an employee in Costa Rica varies across industries and job roles, with professionals in sectors like technology, finance, and healthcare commanding competitive wages. As of 2024, the average monthly salary in Costa Rica ranges from CRC 500,000 (USD 1,000) to CRC 1,500,000 (USD 3000), depending on factors such as education, experience, and industry.

b. Minimum Wage Regulations

Costa Rica has established minimum wage regulations to ensure fair compensation for workers across different sectors. As per the latest regulations, the minimum wage for unskilled workers in the private sector is approximately CRC 309,143 per month. However, it’s essential to note that specific industries or regions may have higher minimum wage requirements to align with the cost of living.

The Ministry of Labor and Social Security of Costa Rica increases the minimum wage per year for each private-sector occupation.

2. Factors Contributing to Specialization in Costa Rican Workers

a. Emphasis on Education and Training

Costa Rica strongly emphasizes education, with high literacy rates and a robust educational system. The country invests in technical and vocational training programs to equip its workforce with specialized skills in various industries.

b. Bilingualism and Multicultural Exposure

Many Costa Rican professionals are bilingual and proficient in English, enhancing their marketability in the global job market. Costa Rica’s multicultural environment also fosters adaptability and cross-cultural communication skills among its workforce.

A clear example is the call centers of consolidated companies such as Amazon, Intel, Hewlett Package, the tourism sector, and others, which take advantage of Costa Ricans’ English and education levels.

c. Industry Expertise and Innovation

Costa Rica has emerged as a hub for innovation and technology, attracting skilled professionals from diverse backgrounds. Industries such as IT, pharmaceuticals, and renewable energy showcase the country’s expertise and specialization in cutting-edge technologies and practices.

This has also benefited Costa Rica, which is considered the “Silicon Valley of Latin America.” The government plans to turn part of the city into a Technology Hub.

3. USA vs. Costa Rica Wages for Businesses comparison

a. Cost-Effectiveness

While wages in the USA may be higher compared to Costa Rica, businesses can benefit from cost savings by leveraging the competitive salaries offered in Costa Rica. Nearshoring or outsourcing certain business functions to Costa Rica allows companies to access specialized talent at a fraction of the cost.

b. Access to Skilled Talent

Costa Rica’s skilled workforce and proximity to the USA make it an attractive destination for businesses looking to tap into specialized talent pools. Costa Rican professionals offer expertise across various domains, from software development to customer service.

4. Advantages of Nearshoring in Costa Rica

a. Cost Savings

Nearshoring to Costa Rica offers significant cost savings for businesses, thanks to the lower labor costs compared to the USA. Companies can maintain high-quality standards while reducing operational expenses.

b. Access to Specialized Talent

Costa Rica boasts a pool of highly skilled professionals with expertise in niche areas such as IT, finance, and healthcare. Nearshoring allows businesses to access this specialized talent without extensive recruitment efforts. Ticos has an excellent international ranking for its category, for its strategy of proximity to the American country, and for being the right talent for companies looking for.

c. Proximity and Time Zone Compatibility

Costa Rica’s geographical proximity to the USA ensures seamless team communication and collaboration. Additionally, the shared time zone facilitates real-time interaction and efficient project management.

5. Attractiveness for New Company Investments

Costa Rica attracts investments from new companies seeking to capitalize on its strategic advantages and favorable business environment. Factors contributing to its attractiveness for new company investments include political stability, modern infrastructure, and government incentives.

6. Extracted List of Costa Rican Salaries for 2024

The following is the official list of base salaries for 2024. They can be taken as an average salary for Costa Rica, but the private employer can improve the salary payment for its employees to be a more competitive company; you can take as a reference more years of experience if the person is educated, position (job title) and everything depends on your company’s budget. They are sourced from the Ministry of Labor and Social Security.

Parking attendant (non chauffeur) ¢11,953,65 Gardener (designs gardens) ¢13.448,72
School bus escort ¢11,953,65 Jewelry box ¢13.448,72
Animal trainer ¢13.448,72 Car washer and waxer ¢11,953,65
Customs broker ¢24.231,19 Pool cleaner (chemical-free) ¢11,953,65
Sales agent * ¢403.461,60 Septic tank cleaner ¢13.448,72
Mason ¢13.448,72 Tire repairer ¢12.998,72
Automotive Enlister (sander) ¢12.998,72 Radio broadcaster ¢15.613,91
Credit Analyst * ¢403.461,60 Television announcer ¢24.231,19
Event entertainer ¢13.448,72 Television lighting technician ¢24.231,19
Steam leveler with steam equipment ¢13.448,72 Master Builder (Construction) ¢15.613,91
Sawyer (uses motorized saw) ¢13.448,72 Manicurist; Makeup Artist ¢13.448,72
Legal assistant * ¢463.248,99 Masseuse ¢13.448,72
Home Assistant (Special care) ¢15.613,91 Computer corrective maintenance ¢15.613,91
Customs Agent Assistant ¢15.613,91 Building maintenance ¢13.448,72
Accounting Assistant * ¢403.461,60 Computer preventive maintenance ¢13.448,72
Dental assistant ¢15.613,91 Boiler mechanic (Maintenance) ¢15.613,91
Kitchen Assistant ¢12.998,72 General Mechanic ¢13.448,72
Assistant in general mechanics ¢12.998,72 Precision mechanic ¢15.613,91
Assistant operator, construction ¢12.998,72 Industrial sewing machine mechanic ¢15.613,91
Baqueano ¢12.998,72 Messenger ¢358.609,50
Barber ¢13.448,72 Miscellaneous * ¢358.609,50
Barista ¢13.448,72 Miscellaneous nursing homes ¢11,953,65
Warehouse Manager (Manager) * ¢389.961,60 Video camera monitor ¢389.961,60
Winemaker (Laborer) * ¢358.609,50 Forklift operator ¢12.998,72
Cashier ¢403.461,60 Maid ¢11,953,65
Waiter ¢11,953,65 Babysitting, except in the child’s home ¢11,953,65
Press cameraman ¢24.231,19 Babysitter in the child’s home (Domestic work) * ¢246.624,40
Singer ¢13.448,72 Clerk (General) * ¢389.961,60
Bartender ¢12.998,72 Stacker operator ¢12.998,72
Boat captain ¢15.613,91 Spider” Operator (Screen Printing) ¢13.448,72
Gas cylinders and fire extinguisher charger ¢12.998,72 Radio booth operator ¢15.613,91
Butcher office clerk ¢12.998,72 Boiler operator ¢13.448,72
Butcher butcher ¢13.448,72 Excavator operator ¢15.613,91
Carpenter ¢13.448,72 Stationary crane operator ¢15.613,91
Taster ¢15.613,91 Heavy machinery operator ¢13.448,72
Locksmith ¢13.448,72 Radio cab operator ¢13.448,72
Chapulinero ¢13.448,72 Construction worker ¢13.448,72
Chef ¢15.613,91 Hand milker ¢11,953,65
Bus checker ¢11,953,65 Milker with machine ¢13.448,72
Collector * ¢389.961,60 Baker ¢13.448,72
Cook ¢13.448,72 Griller ¢12.998,72
Bartender (Bartender or Barwoman) ¢13.448,72 Pastry chef ¢13.448,72
Ambulance driver (first aid) ¢13.448,72 Shrimp peeler ¢11,953,65
Bus driver (no charge) ¢13.448,72 Agricultural laborer (manual labor) ¢11,953,65
Bus driver (conductor) ¢15.613,91 Agricultural laborer (motor mower and similar) ¢12.998,72
Trailer driver ¢15.613,91 Loading and unloading laborer ¢11,953,65
Light vehicle driver ¢12.998,72 Construction laborer ¢11,953,65
Heavy vehicle driver ¢13.448,72 Garden laborer (manual labor) ¢11,953,65
Minibus driver (minus 11 passengers) ¢12.998,72 Garden laborer (motor mower and similar) ¢12.998,72
Concierge * Concierge ¢358.609,50 Boat laborer ¢11,953,65
Private accountant * ¢422.798,93 Pilero (dishwasher) ¢11,953,65
Private accountant * ¢562.756,90 Automotive painter ¢15.613,91
Private accountant * ¢638.299,51 Broad brush painter ¢13.448,72
Private accountant ¢765.985,67 Pistero (fuel dispenser) ¢12.998,72
Copilot (First Aviation Officer) ¢24.231,19 Pistero-collector (responsible for money) ¢403.461,60
Fabric piece cutter (patterns) ¢13.448,72 Pizza maker (assembles and bakes pizza) ¢12.998,72
Piece stitcher (machine garments) ¢13.448,72 Pizzero (cooker) ¢13.448,72
Seamstress (Dressmaker) ¢15.613,91 Porter*. ¢358.609,50
Counter (Ticket seller) * ¢403.461,60 Inventory processor (hand hell) ¢13.448,72
Demonstrator (display) ¢11,953,65 Computer programmer (no degree) ¢15.613,91
Demonstrator-salesperson ¢12.998,72 Programmer in radio stations ¢15.613,91
Dependent ¢12.998,72 Supplier * Supplier ¢403.461,60
Flight dispatcher ¢24.231,19 Receptionist* ¢389.961,60
Graphic Arts Designer ¢15.613,91 Garbage and recycling collector ¢11,953,65
Digitizer ¢13.448,72 Coffee picker per trunk ¢1.138,14
Cabinetmaker ¢15.613,91 Coyol collector ¢11,953,65
Aspiring educator without a degree ¢463.248,99 Watchmaker ¢13.448,72
Electrician ¢13.448,72 Reporter ¢13.448,72
Electromechanical ¢15.613,91 Sabanero ¢11,953,65
Packer, labeler (manual) ¢11,953,65 Sacristan ¢11,953,65
Office Clerk ¢12.998,72 Manual waste sorter ¢11,953,65
Surveyor * ¢389.961,60 Salon Waitress ¢11,953,65
Automotive straightener ¢13.448,72 Tailor (Tailor-made garments) ¢15.613,91
Soccer Coach (First and Second Division) ¢15.613,91 Secretary * ¢403.461,60
Inventory scanner (handheld) ¢389.961,60 Secretary * ¢422.798,93
Esthetician ¢15.613,91 Secretary * ¢562.756,90
Stevedore per kilo fruits and vegetables ¢0,0821 Secretary * ¢638.299,51
Motion stevedore ¢433,07 Secretary * ¢765.985,67
Stevedore per ton ¢101,56 Serigrapher (design) ¢15.613,91
Stylist ¢13.448,72 Serigrapher (Estampa diseños) ¢13.448,72
Florist ¢13.448,72 Welder (Special Welding) ¢15.613,91
Plumber ¢13.448,72 Welder in general ¢13.448,72
Photocopier (Photocopy Center) ¢12.998,72 Logger (uses motor saw) ¢13.448,72
Press photographer ¢15.613,91 Upholsterer ¢13.448,72
Milling machine operator (Metalworking) ¢15.613,91 Tattooist ¢13.448,72
Fumigators in houses and buildings ¢12.998,72 Cab driver ¢13.448,72
First Division Football Player ¢15.613,91 Air conditioning technician ¢13.448,72
Soccer Player Second Division ¢13.448,72 Orthopedic appliance technician ¢24.231,19
Social Media Manager (Community Manager, designs final artwork) ¢15.613,91 Contact lens technician ¢24.231,19
Social media manager (Community manager, monitors and responds) ¢389.961,60 Domestic/Industrial ¢24.231,19
Social media manager
(Community manager, Carrie, and interprets data)
¢403.461,60 Refrigeration Technician ¢24.231,19
Gondolier ¢11,953,65 machine technician ¢24.231,19
Security man* ¢389.961,60 Telephone operator * ¢389.961,60
Custody safekeeping and securities safekeeping*. ¢403.461,60 Metal lathe operator ¢15.613,91
Tourist guide ¢13.448,72 Domestic work * ¢246.624,40
Tinsmith ¢13.448,72 Tractor Operator (Caterpillar or Tire) ¢13.448,72
Glass installer (cutting, framing) ¢13.448,72 Vagonetero ¢13.448,72
Dance instructor ¢13.448,72 Greengrocer ¢12.998,72
Fitness instructor (no degree) ¢13.448,72 Flyer’s distributor ¢11,953,65
Zapatero ¢13.448,72


To obtain the cost per hour, you must take the monthly wages, divide by 30 (the number of days in the month), and divide by 8 (the official number of hours per day).
The result will give you the value of each professional’s hour of work. Be careful because some salaries are indicated by the daily cost, like the fitness instructor ¢13.448,72.

7. Conclusion: Deciphering Costa Rica’s Wage Landscape

In conclusion, Costa Rica offers a compelling proposition for businesses and professionals. With competitive salaries, favorable labor laws, and a skilled workforce, the country presents numerous opportunities for growth and success. Whether you’re a business considering nearshoring or an individual seeking employment, Costa Rica’s vibrant economy and dynamic workforce make it a destination worth exploring.

This overview of wages, labor laws, and the overall employment landscape can help you make informed decisions to thrive in Costa Rica’s dynamic business environment.

If you have any questions regarding the minimum wage and other employment matters in Costa Rica, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at info@aglegal.com