So You Want to Retire in Costa Rica — 2017 UPDATE

A U.S. expatriate couple — Costa Rica residents since reluctantly moving from their beloved California in 2009 because of Great Recession financial reverses — relate what they’ve learned about the joys and challenges of “la pura vida” since a 2011 YouTube video on their early experience. (Available at .) Here are tips for those contemplating moving to the peaceful, biodiverse Central American republic, as 70,000 gringo expats have done. These Californians happen to be Democrats. They have many Republican expat friends, but there is a glancing reference to President Trump that has attracted bitter comments from a few conservative viewers. As creator of this video, I intend no political messages — other than respect for everybody’s freedom of speech and a plea for civility on YouTube.

56 Replies to “So You Want to Retire in Costa Rica — 2017 UPDATE”

  1. I agree with Trump, you do need psycho therapy. I live in the capital just up the road. Its very nice her in the central valley but difficult at times.

    1. Oh to live in a country where there are no politicians, no liberal or conservative parties or nothing of the sort…..the Central Valley looks beautiful ūüôā

  2. Why would I want to listen to two CA¬†libs who go political in a “Retire To CR” video?¬†¬†At 2m52s,¬†the man¬†refers to¬†Costa Rica as a socialist country. What the heck?¬†I almost fell outta my chair.¬† You should’ve stopped video and let him know that it’s a democratic republic. Then he can’t even explain¬†what “pura vida” means?!?! Epic fail.

    1. I am a Canadian and the Trump bashing made ME want to puke…..the couple are a pair of left coast wackjob Democrats that want a luxury lifestyle whilst yapping off about the beautifull benefits of Socialism

    2. Socialism is the philosophy of failure,the creed of ignorance and the gospel of envy.It’s inherant nature is the equal sharing of misery….Sir Winston Churchill.

      As for Sweden which has had RAPES rise by 1500% since a few million Muslims invaded Sweden try asking the average Swedish gal how safe she feels walking the streets

  3. oh to be rich and white and privileged and just swoop in on someone else Ľs country and benefit from a legacy of white/euro privilege… pura vida! (for some)

    1. I was trying to say that but you beat me to it. Near the beginning one of them refers to “democrats, who are working class” inferring he was from the “ruling” class.

    2. libtards? I m sorry in costa rica we have no such things we are too busy living life and trying to provide than arguing about moronic stupidity such liberalism and conservatism. Keep that stupidity in your nation please. and Ryan 10000% correct asking a bunch of privileged white baby boomer’s about living in costa rica in their gated communities with golf courses is a fallacy and a joke.

  4. Amazing how negative so many of the comments are. Sickening, really. I thought this video was very helpful and exactly what I was looking for. Thank you Martin!

    1. To whom are you referring? I would never call anyone a filthy name. I can disagree with someone all day and would never disrespect them (unless offensive language was used toward me). Case in point Rolman88. I can’t blame him though. He probably learned his limited English from another person who didn’t speak it well.

    2. The ability to learn a second language depends on many things, age at which one is exposed to it as well as that person’s level of immersion. I was an exchange student to Costa Rica at age 16 and immersed myself in the culture and language. I’ve been told that my Spanish is still¬†very good. Of course that was at a time when FB (et al) ¬†didn’t exist and as such I had little¬†reason to speak English. If I were an exchange student today, I doubt I would speak Spanish¬†as well as I do now.¬†I imagine that Dr. Gray and her husband had very little exposure to Spanish before moving. I would imagine they moved to a place with many expats and had little to no need to speak it . People really need a little more empathy.¬†However I stand by my original comment regarding the husband’s (lack of)¬†understanding of Costa Rica (government and culture)¬†and its “pura vida” culture..

  5. sorry to say you people are very judgemental and think you are better than anyone . everyone is wrong and your right attitude is crazy . worry about yourself dam people like you are a very conceited . this isnt about you and only you this is what is wrong with America .you people dont deserve what you have . unbelievable

    1. correction: your “white” attitude is crazy. i am a black american living in the dominican republic and don’t associate myself with white americans, canadians, or europeans and have been extremely happy this way!! you are so right with the way whites come to these countries and think they are above all. i heard the germans were really, really bad about this. and you’re so right about what you said concerning america!! spot on!

    1. The politics are welcome because retirees need to know about the legal system before they retire here. A gringo should not drive a car but instead use public transportation. You will ALWAYS be at fault if you are a gringo.

    1. I’d rather live in a country that has “poor” but free healthcare than in a country where if you’re not very well off you’ll die cause you can’t afford to see a doctor :/

  6. She mentioned about “worrying” about Trump, but moved to Costa Rica in 2009 when Obama was in office. A typical California leftist couple who voted in politicians who priced them out of their state and is trying to do the same thing to the place they move in. Also, she mentioned about not knowing Spanish even though she resided there for TWO years. She expected the locals to cater to her instead of her adapting to them.

    1. Guess you don’t read much, California has the the 5th largest economy in the world and is currently running a surplus. The mid west US is cheap for a reason, no one wants to live there. With Spanky in office, destroying the environment, destroying healthcare, destroying consumer rights, giving tax breaks to his rich buddies and increasing taxes for the middle class by eliminating state and local tax deductions it’s easy to understand why they want to stay in CR.
      However you are right about her and her husband not learning Spanish after being in CR for two years, but expecting anyone coming to the US to learn English.

  7. $ i lived in Costa rica for 4 months The costa ricans see you as $ . San jose isnt safe and i wouldnt trust any one of those clowns with my health

    1. As a Costa Rican I can say this is true! Sorry dude, but the “Pura Vida” lifestyle is BS, our lifes are stressful and nobody cares about others.

  8. Oh wow, he says petty theft is big. Leaving a camera on a table and walking away from it in America would have the same outcome. Leaving a phone in an unlocked car? What Americans don’t steal from unlocked cars? Bloody idiots. Typical gringos!!

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