Following the trend of countries all over the world offering digital nomad visas, Costa Rica has recently announced its new digital nomad visa scheme.
The initiative was signed into law by President Carlos Alvarado on August 11, 2021. The digital nomad visa will allow remote workers to stay in the country for up to two years (one year renewable). Previously, remote workers entered the country as tourists and could only stay for 90 days.
In order to obtain Costa Rica’s digital nomad visa, remote workers will need to show proof of a stable monthly income of at least $3,000. If the applicant would like to apply with a partner or family member, the joint income must be $4,000 or more per month. Applicants must also obtain health insurance to cover all parties throughout the duration of their stay.
Digital nomad visa holders will be exempt from paying Costa Rican income taxes. They will also be able to open local bank accounts and drive in the country using their foreign license.
“Tourists who stay for longer periods of time redistribute their money in the value chains generated by tourism,” Tourism Minister Gustavo Segura said. “They make more local purchases, rent a car for several weeks or months, use services such as the beauty salon, the supermarket, restaurant, soda, laundry, greengrocer, medical services, among other businesses in the community, hence the importance of becoming an option for remote workers.”
The specifications of the visa application, including cost, have yet to be determined. The details must be laid out by the General Directorate of Migration and Foreigners (DGME) in no more than two months, as established by law.