Frequently Asked Questions

 

This section offers a good answer to the most frequent questions asked for our Travelers regarding our services, migration or labor affairs and more. We hope this resource meets the most of your accurate information demands, but feel free to contact us with further consultations regarding Costa Rica, this company or any other particular.

 

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1.                  I am interested in Retire in Costa Rica. What I have to do for getting this Status?

2.                Your Intercultural Programs includes Learning Spanish Programs Alone?

3.                What happen if I or my children am/are interested in any of your Travel Offers but I/We am/are minor(s)?

4.                What are the most frequent experiences living an Intercultural Program participant?

5.                I would like to study a college career in C.R? Is that possible?

6.                I am interested in a Family Exchange? ¿Is that also possible?

7.                I want to travel covered for a Travel Insurance. Do you offer this product?

8.                Is possible to get a job and earn some extra money while I traveling around C.R.?

9.                Do I need a passport to go to Costa Rica?

10.             Do I need a Visa to visit Costa Rica?

11.              May I enter to Costa Rica with a One way Ticket?

12.             Do I need an international drivers license to drive in Costa Rica?

13.             Can I get married in Costa Rica? What documents do I need?

14.             Is the water drinkable in Costa Rica?

15.             Is there a Train Service in Costa Rica?

16.             What is the currency in Costa Rica?

17.             Are All Major Credit Cards accepted in Costa Rica?

18.             What kind of Inoculations do I have to take if am planning to visit Costa Rica?

19.             Do I need an electric adapter to use my home or beauty care appliances?

20.           What documents are required to enter with a pet to Costa Rica?

21.             How much is the Departure Tax?

22.           How can I get a Working Visa?

23.           What are the requirements to become a Resident Pensioner in Costa Rica?

24.           Are the National Parks wheel chair accessible?

25.           Is there an American or other Nationalities Legion in Costa Rica?

26.           If I decided to stay longer, can I get a visa being there?

27.           What should I bring when going to the Rain Forest?

28.           Is there a Domestic Airline offering local trips within the country?

29.           What is the Sales Tax in Costa Rica?

30.           What number should I dial in case of Emergency?

31.             Are there local newspaper written in a language different to Spanish?

32.           When do you celebrate Carnival?

33.           Which are Costa Rica natural boundaries?

34.           How is Costa Rica politically divided?

35.           Where can I get more information about Costa Rica?

 

1. I am interested in Retire in Costa Rica. What I have to do for getting this Status?

Thousands of foreigners call Costa Rica home.  More than 25,000 North Americans alone are living here.  They have come to enjoy a slower pace of life and a lower cost of living.  Foreigners are free to own property in Costa Rica.  If you are retired and receive a monthly income, obtaining residency as a  “pensionado” is relatively simple.   A dependable attorney can be hired to help you with the paperwork.  We can provide you with names and telephone numbers of good lawyers upon request or a list can be obtained at the U.S. Embassy.

 

You must prove that you receive a minimum of $600 per month of lifetime income from outside of Costa Rica.  Social Security retirement income qualifies for this.  Social Security or Private Pension income must be verified.  You can own and operate a business, but cannot work for a salary.  Parents, siblings, spouse and children of pensionados can obtain residency as your dependents. After two years as a pensionado permanent residency can be acquired. 

 

You will need to complete an application, which can be obtained at the Department of Resident Pensioners.  However it is advised to have an attorney help you with the application, which he or she can also provide to you.  Along with standard information, it will ask for the origin and amount of your monthly “pension”.  The application needs to be signed by you, your spouse and any children over 18 years and less than 25 years of age.  Applicants must have no criminal convictions, pending charges or investigations against them at the time of the application.  You will need a police report verifying this as well as a birth certificate for yourself and all dependents, as well as photocopies of your passport and the passports of your dependents and four passport size pictures of yourself as well as of all of your dependents. 

 

Your attorney can notarize the application for you and present it for you.  Approval should be granted within thirty days. You are required to inform the appropriate authority of any change of your residence address.  A pensionado must reside in Costa Rica a minimum of four consecutive or alternate months per year.

 

Feel free to contact us if you would like any additional information regarding retirement living in Costa Rica.

 

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2. Your Intercultural Programs includes Learning Spanish Programs Alone?

No. If you prefer to learn others languages as english, italian, german or french is also possible. Some courses are offered through our academy. Other ones through other academies but no all programs include Home stay with a native speaker local family. Prices of packs use to vary with language to learn.

 

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3. What happen if I or my children am/are interested in any of your Travel Offers but I/We am/are minor(s)?

Is not a problem. If you or children are minor(s) must to obtain the respective permission of your parents or any other competent authority in your country and must to accept by writing the Rules of Behavior fixed for agency for this cases.   

 

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4. What are the most frequent experiences living an Intercultural Program participant?

 

v    Return to visit his/her host family and friends time after time

v    The second and/or next trips use to be total or partially free.

v    His/Her host family and friends use to return visit to participant at home

v    Is very frequent to make a boyfriend or girlfriend during program

v    Will make new friends both local and many other countries of the world.

v    Very probably will take a voluntary program(s) as well.

v    Your trip will extend for longer time than you originally planned.

 

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5. I would like to study a college career in Costa Rica? ¿Is that possible?

Yes, it is possible. You only will need to present your previous school attestations and request a “Student Visa” in nearer Costa Rica Embassy or Consulate to you. Additionally must to let us know what career do you want to study and most probably time to start and will make all arrangements for you. Our services includes advice and support in your moving process, Hotel, House, Apartment or Local Family searching and reservation, transfers around the city, advice and support on your College registration process and more. College careers use to start on January, May and September every year. This option is also available for High School students…

 

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6. I am interested in a Family Exchange? ¿Is that also possible?

Yes, it is. We have some options in this line but to participate on program must to be an active member of Mercy Travelers Club. The program it has an affiliation cost or membership and once registered on program, you will have access to info about family prospects.

 

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7. I want to travel covered for a Travel Insurance. Do you offer this product?

Many of our Travel Offers include on the regular price a local Travel Insurance that protect you in case of Accidental Death, Body Repatriation, Permanent Incapacity and/or Medical Assistance throughout your stay in C.R. Being covered for a Travel Insurance is a mandatory rule to may participate of some of our packages as Volunteering or Interns. But if you prefer, you may hire a Travel Insurance with your local Insurance Agent.

 

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8. Is possible to get a job and earn some extra money while I am traveling around C.R.?

Normally is necessary to have a work permission to work in country. This permission is emitted for respective embassy or consulate of C.R. on your area and to get it easier is necessary to have a formal offer of job in country and a college degree. Sometimes is possible to get an informal job in a hotel or restaurant for instance at exchange of free lodging and/or meals.

 

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9.  Do I need a passport to go to Costa Rica?

A valid passport is mandatory to enter to Costa Rica.

 

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10.  Do I need a visa to visit Costa Rica?

Depending on your country of origin, you may enter Costa Rica without a Visa. Citizens from USA, Canada and most of European countries have this privilege.

 

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11.   May I enter Costa Rica with a one way ticket?

To have a round trip ticket is an Entry Requirement.

 

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12.  Do I need an international drivers license to drive in Costa Rica?

You are allowed to drive with your normal drivers license for three months.

 

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13.   Can I get married in Costa Rica? What documents do I need? 

Foreigners can get married in Costa Rica. The documents needed are: - original birth certificate - affidavit of single status - police record - valid passport - divorce decree (if applicable) - These documents need to follow the authentication procedure before being taken to Costa Rica.

 

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14.   Is the water drinkable in Costa Rica?
The water is potable in most of the country. We recommend using bottled water, specially in areas around the coast.

 

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15.  Is there a train service in Costa Rica?

There is a Public Train Service covering the main points of San Jose City. Cost of the service is around $ 0.60 per person / each way and it offers monday to friday. There is a Train Tour going from San Jose City to Caldera Port, at the Pacific Coast on weekends. For more information and reservations feel free to contact us.

 

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16.  What is the currency in Costa Rica?
The Costa Rican currency is called Colon. US dollars and Euros are widely accepted.

 

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17.  Are All Major Credit Cards accepted in Costa Rica?
All Major Credit Cards are widely accepted. You will find ATM machines distributed throughout the country.
 

 

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18.  What kind of inoculations do I have to take if I am planning to visit Costa Rica?
No vaccines are required to enter Costa Rica.
 

 

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19.  Do I need an electric adapter to use my home or beauty care appliances?
Outlets are 110 V, with standard US two prong plugs.

 

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20.  What documents are required to enter with a pet to Costa Rica?

Dogs and cats entering Costa Rica must having a health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian, and endorsed by a veterinarian service (VS). The examination for the certificate must be conducted within the two weeks prior to the Arrival Date. The required vaccinations are: distemper, hepatitis, lestospirosis, parvovirus and rabies (for animals 4 months or older).     

 

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21.   How much is the Departure Tax?
Departure tax is $26 and it can be paid on US Dollars, C.R. Colones or using your Credit Card.

 

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22.  How can I get a working visa?
You must apply for a working visa at the Costarican Consulate.

 

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23.   What are the requirements to become a Resident Pensioner in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica warmly receives the more of good proven reputation citizens coming from the more of countries on the world interested in becoming a permanent Resident Pensioner. If you are interested in applying for this Status, please check the information contained on the question number 1 of this questioner.      

 

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24.  Are the national parks wheel chair accessible?
The Poas Volcano National Park is the only one that offers accessing facilities for wheel chairs. 

 

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25.  Is there an American or other Nationalities Legion in Costa Rica?
There is an American Legion for people who went to the army. You can also contact The Association of Residents at (506)233-8068.

 

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26.  If I decided to stay longer, can I get a visa being there?
You just have to leave the country for 72 hours, upon returning to Costa Rica the permit will be renewed automatically for 90 more days.

 

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27.   What should I bring when going to the rain forest?
All you need is insect repellent, a rain coat with a hood and hiking boots.

 

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28.   Is there a Domestic Airlines offering local trips within the country?

There are several local airlines that offers flight services within the country. Some of them are Sansa, Nature Air or Aerobell. Feel free to contact us for further information or bookings.

 

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29. What is the sales tax in Costa Rica?
C.R. Sales tax is 13%

 

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30.  What number should I dial in case of emergency?
Dial 911 for immediate assistance. Service offers 24/7/365.

 

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31.  Are there local newspaper written in a language different to Spanish?

Most popular No Spanish written newspaper is The Tico Times. Updated info about C.R. and the world in English.

 

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32.   When do you celebrate Carnival?
There is a carnival in San Jose City on December 26th. Limon Carnivals are celebrated in October 12th and Puntarenas City it has yours from February 21 to March 3rd.

 

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33.  Which are Costa Rica natural boundaries?
North: Nicaragua - South:Panama - East:Caribbean Sea - West: Pacific Ocean

 

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34. How is Costa Rica politically divided?

Costa Rica is divided into 7 provinces: San Jose, Heredia, Alajuela, Cartago, Limon, Puntarenas and Guanacaste.

 

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35.  Where can I get more information about Costa Rica?

Visit our C.R. Info Page available on Home Page for getting complete info about the Costa Rica Climate, History and other issues.

 

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