Playa Ocotal, Costa Rica
Last updated on Jul 02, 2023
Summary: Expats, digital nomads and retirees discuss what it is like to live in Playa Ocotal, Costa Rica: Cost of living, Finding a home, Meeting People and more.
What do I need to know about living in Playa Ocotal?
When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Playa Ocotal, they said:
"Playa Ocotal is a popular retirement destination for expats due to its tropical climate, beautiful beaches, and relaxed lifestyle. Before retiring there, it's important to understand the cost of living, which is generally lower than in many Western countries, but higher than in other parts of Costa Rica. Healthcare in Costa Rica is of a high standard and affordable, with both public and private options available. However, it's recommended to have a comprehensive health insurance plan. Spanish is the official language of Costa Rica, so learning some basic Spanish will make daily life easier and more enjoyable. The country uses the Costa Rican colón as its currency, but US dollars are widely accepted. It's advisable to open a local bank account for convenience. Costa Rica has a stable political climate and is considered one of the safest countries in Central America. However, like anywhere, it's important to take basic safety precautions. The country has a residency program for retirees known as the "pensionado" program, which requires proof of a monthly income of $1,000 from a pension or retirement fund. Costa Rica has a high standard of education, with many schools offering bilingual education, which can be an advantage if you plan to have your grandchildren visit or live with you. The country's infrastructure can be challenging, with some areas having poor road conditions and limited public transportation. Owning a car can be expensive due to high import taxes. Costa Rica is known for its commitment to environmental sustainability, so be prepared to embrace a green lifestyle. Finally, it's important to understand that while Costa Rica offers a relaxed pace of life, things may not always run on time. Patience and flexibility are key to enjoying life in this beautiful country," said one expat who made the move to Playa Ocotal.
What do I need to know before moving to Playa Ocotal?
About the Author
Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.
- What should I pack when moving to Playa Ocotal?
- Where should I setup a bank account in Playa Ocotal?
- Will I be able to find a job in Playa Ocotal?
- What is life like as an expat in your area?
- What do expats in Playa Ocotal appreciate most about the local culture?
- What do expats find most challenging?
- Is there a lot of crime in Playa Ocotal?
- Is there a lot of diversity? Are people in Playa Ocotal accepting of differences?
- What are the schools in Playa Ocotal like?
- How are healthcare services in Playa Ocotal?
- What are medical services in Playa Ocotal like?
- Are healthcare and health insurance expensive in Playa Ocotal?
- What are emergency services like in Playa Ocotal?
- Will I need to travel to see a specialist?
- Are common prescription medications available in Playa Ocotal?
- How are local medical facilities in Playa Ocotal?
- As a foreigner living in Playa Ocotal, will I have access to public healthcare? What is it like?
- What have your experiences during the pandemic with the local healthcare system been like?