Costa Rica – A Retirement Paradise

You might like to consider retiring in Costa Rica. This is one country that will offer you many, many advantages both in the normal course and as a retired person. Traditionally, the country has been politically stable and has a democratic form of government.

During the difficulties posed by the Cold War, there were a number of global organizations that considered Costa Rica a safe haven to operate from. The main focus at the time was extending aid to Latin America.

Costa Rica, situated at the southern end of Central America, covers an area of more than 51,000 kilometers and has a population of about 3.2 million. The country is known for its natural beauty, with different kinds of vegetation and wonderful beaches, where you will surely love to spend a great deal of time.

The diversity of Costa Rica’s natural beauty is such that whether you are looking for beaches, forests, mountains, national parks or volcanoes, believe it or not, you can find them all in this amazing country!

Costa Rica has an equable climate, with temperatures varying between 68°F and 78°F, rather reminiscent of spring. Most of the time, you’ll be able to get by with just light clothing. There’s a dry season from December to April, when temperatures are quite high – pleasant in the valleys, warmer in the lower coastal regions. During the dry season, days are sunny and nights are cool.

During the rainy season, which continues from May to October, you’ll see overcast skies and heavy rain most of the time. Around the end of July and the beginning of August, the weather begins to resemble spring.

Costa Rica is only a 3-hour flight from many locations in the southern part of the United States. There are also several direct flights to locations in Europe and South America from Costa Rica.

Costa Ricans place a great deal of importance on education. You will find many highly qualified professionals and technical people here. As a retired person, you can expect to find several Costa Ricans who can speak English and will be ready to help you if you are in trouble.

English is widely spoken and understood here, although the official language of the country is Spanish. Often you’ll find that young people in Costa Rica have received a bilingual education at grade school and been through high school with English, German or French.

In addition, communications are very highly developed here. Costa Rica offers many benefits as a tax haven. There are no exchange controls on foreign currency and foreigners can expect to enjoy the same privileges as Costa Rica’s citizens. The currency used in Costa Rica is the colon. You could also exchange your foreign currency or make your payments through Visa, Mastercard or American Express.

One of the reasons why you may be drawn to Costa Rica as a retirement destination is that any profits you make within the country are not taxed, whether you are a national, foreigner or non resident. This includes capital profits, gift and estate taxes. Royalty income received from abroad is also exempted from tax, whether the author is a resident of Costa Rica or not.

Occasionally, you may come across incidents of civil unrest, such as strikes and demonstrations, but Americans are not generally caught up in such episodes.

As far as housing is concerned, you have several choices, such as independent living, assisted living or retirement communities, which are truly beautiful settings. You’ll find as many as 60 independent villas as well as a health center in Costa Rica.

You can live in this country for as little as $ 1,000 to $ 1,300 per month and the quality of life that you would enjoy would be far better than what would be available for that amount of money in the United States.

The cost of property in Costa Rica compares with prices in the United States – with one important difference. You’d get better value for the same price in Costa Rica. Let’s say the price of a home would be about the same as that of Middle America – but in Costa Rica, your home could well include a view of the ocean or a wilderness in your backyard!

As for safety and security, it would be better carry your passport at all times. The alternative is to keep it securely locked in your hotel or place of residence, as thefts have been known to occur.

By and large, life in this country promises to be rich and varied. So are you ready to take the plunge? Think it over – remember you could do a lot worse!

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