Retirement in Costa Rica

Costa Rica Retiring

Costa Rica RetiringCosta Rica, the Heavenly Abode of the Immigrant Retirees in Their Twilight of Life

Costa Rica reserves the fame as retiree destination for people from across the globe. The long stretched tropics of the Caribbean and Pacific and the mountainous central valley that produces a mild climate throughout the year.

The country has a middle-level income but provides its citizens high standards of living. Costa Rica has a small population of around four million citizens with the country covering a total of 50,000 square kilometers. Costa Rica is one of the best places to retire to in the fifties and even for a peaceful life after fifties.

Currently, more than 200,000 U.S expatriates live in Costa Rica while enjoying one of the highest standards of living in a Central American country. Most of the expatriates have organized themselves in well-established expat communities throughout the country.

These expats enjoy the low cost of Costa Rica living, the excellent low-cost health care and some of the most modern conveniences such as high-speed internet services. Entertainment is not limited in Costa Rica. Most of the expatriates will have a great time in movie theaters, outdoor activities along various beaches and fine dining in five-star hotels and tours in the major cities.

For all nature enthusiasts, Costa Rica will offer the unmatched beauty of Mother Nature. The country has a progressive approach to environmental conservation that ensures its jungles, wetlands, coasts and other biodiversity are properly maintained.

Different resident status for retirees

Costa Rica offers three kinds of immigration status for those who seek permanent residence in the country.

Applicants who can prove a stable monthly income of over $1,000 and above are permitted as pensioners or Pensionados as locals call them. Other candidates without an official pension but with adequate income above $2,500 are given Rentistas immigration status. In the third category, is the Investor class of immigrants, who can invest specified finances of between $100 000 to $200 000 in particular industries such as fruit processing and tourism in Costa Rica. All the above categories of immigrants can move with their dependent families only under permissible conditions.

One of the biggest challenges encountered while moving to a new place is getting appropriate means of transport for transporting household goods and other personal items. Various international shipping companies specialize in such services especially for migrants moving from other countries to Costa Rica.

One can easily get reputable shipping brokers in Costa Rica who coordinate with other international carriers to have items of clients delivered in certain locations within Costa Rica.

One can have all their household items rendered in one container from their country including their cars and other accessories. Some immigrants also choose to share a container with others. This reduces the shipping costs. There are still others who opt to bring only items that can fit in their briefcases and leave the rest in their home country.

Apart from personal belongings, you can also choose to move with your pets to Costa Rica. There are no quarantines for all pets entering Costa Rica. However, all pets entering the country must be vaccinated against rabies within a period of 30 days from departure to Costa Rica.

There is APHIS 7001 international certificate that one has to fill out that certifies the pets entering Costa Rica are in good health. Small cats and dogs can comfortably ride in a carrier under the seat. Larger dogs are only allowed to travel in crates with the rest of the luggage.

There are extra fees involved when transporting pets on most airlines across the world. However, an individual can choose to hire a pet shipper to have their pets transported to Costa Rica. Some breeds of pets are prohibited from flying due to health concerns. Others like birds may require additional paperwork. An individual, therefore, needs to check with their airline for such requirements.

Firearms: one can only be admitted with their firearms subject to the restrictions and import permits by the Costa Rica authorities. Only citizens and individuals with permanent residency may be allowed to hold firearms.

Permanent residence is only possible after three years of a temporary residency in the pensionado state for instance. Other immigration statuses have a different duration in which they are allowed to have possession of firearms.

Applications to have or import non-military weapons can be made through a licensed importer or an authorized dealer. The firearm must then be registered with the ministry of public securities department.

Medicines and other drugs: some medications that are prohibited in other countries such as USA and Europe are permitted in Costa Rica. This may include some narcotics and over the counter prescriptions. It is, however, important to check on medicines and other drugs that are prohibited in Costa Rica.

Costa Rica Immigration Laws.

Costa Rica immigration laws are becoming tougher each day. The process of applying for any immigration document is lengthy and complicated, especially to foreigners. For instance, an individual needs to provide proof of their income, their identities, that of their parents, criminal records amongst others information.

Even after applying, the documents might take up to six months or more before approval. There are also cases of unscrupulous dealers who pose as real estate agents and con foreigners of their hard earned cash.

It is advisable to seek services of a qualified legal attorney who is familiar with Costa Rica’s laws. We have capable Law Officer here at Meléndez and Bonilla who have built rapport with the immigration offices and helped our client’s sort complaints regarding Costa Rica immigration, likewise application for visas and work permits.

Our service charges are inclusive of the legal services, presentation of all of the documents, correction to all of the documents, and notarization of the documents. It however does not include any charges from the Consulate in the applicant’s country for legalization or stamps, or for the translation of the documents. These costs are worth the charges allotted because in the absence of such valid counseling, any price that you may have to pay for altering the date, in the case if anything goes wrong will be very expensive. You may also run the risk of outright rejection of your application permanently.