Costa Rica, A Great Place to Retire

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Affordable and stunningly beautiful, Costa Rica is on many lists of ‘Top 10 number of Places to Retire Abroad.’ Living for less in a foreign land makes good financial sense in an uncertain economy. Or even just because being economical can get you so many good things.

NextAvenue.org ranks Costa Rica number three of five most enticing countries to retire in. It is number three with AARP and Boston.com, number four with Kiplinger, and number five according to International Living’s Retirement Index.

This index takes into consideration things from local entertainment to the availability of direct flights to the U.S. to senior discounts. There is plenty of local entertainment from nightclubs and upscale restaurants to the National Theater and National Symphony Orchestra. As for discounts, if you are a legal resident of Costa Rica, you can apply for a Ciudano de Oro (Golden Citizen) card. Once you have it, you can go to the front of any line (no waiting), get free bus rides and get discounts from 2-20% on many purchases. Even if you don’t have the card, it’s worth asking if there is a senior discount. You might have to show your driver’s license, but it’s worth the trouble for a discount.

Climate, cost of living, quality and availability of healthcare also enter the equation. You can choose your climate depending on elevation and other factors. The cost of living is about one third cheaper than most major US cities. Healthcare from English-speaking doctors is readily available. The size of the local expat community and the percentage of the local population that speaks English are also important factors. Check and check. Many US citizens have retired to Costa Rica, along with a few Canadians, Aussies and Brits. A large portion of the native population speak English as it is taught in the schools. You want to consider all of the things that make you comfortable in your surroundings, all of the details that makes it feel like home.

There are lists of the most economical places to retire, the most exciting, the most secure, and a myriad of others. As far as the world’s best climate, a lot depends on what you personally want. Some people thrive on sunshine and warmth, then there is the humid or dry question.  Others want some snow in winter or four seasons. It’s a matter of taste. The world’s best climate is pretty subjective. But pretty much whatever climate you want, you can find it in Costa Rica.

Whatever your favorite hobbies or sports, they are available, too. There are even some new adventures awaiting you, as well as new friends to meet. Or you can enjoy the familiar surroundings of shopping malls, supermarkets, museums and restaurants.  When so many authorities and trusted sources recommend Costa Rica as a good place to retire, shouldn’t you check it out?