Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa: Remote Work Visa For Costa Rica

Written By: Armando Du Preez
Fact Checked By: Richard Nathan

Jul 21, 2022

8 min read

Are you looking to work and travel at the same time? Then I have the perfect solution for you. The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa. With this new visa, you can work and enjoy the Pura Vida lifestyle in the Central American country of Costa Rica.

Although Spain is now getting into the digital nomadic world, countries such as Croatia, Estonia, Greece, and Portugal are getting excellent feedback from the nomad communities worldwide. There are also rumours of a new Panama Digital Nomad Visa.

The Costa Rica Digital Nomads Visa (DNV) has been delayed a bit. Still, despite the Covid-19 pandemic, digital nomads can soon experience the blue oceans of the Caribbean Islands.

Let's get to it:

Key Points Of The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa?

Before I get into the Costa Rica DNV details, you must know that the Costa Rican Digital Nomad Remote Work Visa is not yet available. However, before you get too worried, here's some critical information about the Costa Rica DNV and what you can expect when it's launched.

What Is The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa?

A Digital Nomads Visa is designed for remote workers, business owners, and freelancers who want to stay in a foreign country longer than a tourist visa. These visas are essentially more residence permits that allow digital nomads to enjoy long-stay visits to Costa Rica. The Costa Rica DNV is also a way to boost the tourism industry and has its benefits for the world economies.

If you want to be eligible for a digital nomad visa, there are certain things you need to know. First and most important, you must either work for a foreign company, not in your home country, own a business, or work as a freelancer with clients from other companies. The Costa Rica DNV is ideal for digital nomads who want to settle without worrying about crossing borders or overstaying their tourist visas.

Remember that the Costa Rica DNV differs from a Costa Rica Work Visa. The difference is that the Costa Rica DNV requires you to work for a foreign company. At the same time, the Costa Rica Work Visa allows you to work for a Costa Rican-owned company.

How Long Will The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa Be Valid?

The Costa Rica DNV allows digital nomads to stay in Costa Rica for up to 1 year. But there's more. You can apply for an additional year as soon as your 1 year is up.

I know that is great because instead of only staying 90 days in Costa Rica with your tourist visa, you can now enjoy 2 years. In addition, this means you don't have to go through the hassles of applying for a Permanent Resident Visa or a Rentista Temporary Resident Visa.

Before applying for the additional year, you must prove that you have stayed in Costa Rica for 180 days.

What Are The Financial Requirements For The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa?

Before getting too excited about the Costa Rica DNV, you must first meet the financial income requirements. For example, if you plan on going to Costa Rica alone, you must have at least a stable monthly income of 3,000 USD. On the other hand, if you plan to apply for the Costa Rica DNV with your family members, you must prove that you have at least a stable income of 4,000 USD per month.

So if you want to provide evidence of your Proof of income, remember that the 4,000 USD can be made up by combining your and your spouse's income. This must be done by providing evidence of your previous bank statements for the prior year.

Who Can Apply For The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa?

The short answer is basically anyone that works as a freelancer doing remote working in Costa Rica. The main requirement is that you do not work for a Costa Rican company. It doesn't matter what your country of origin is. As long as you do not receive payment from a Costa Rican company, you are good to go.

What Are The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa Requirements?

Although the Costa Rica DNV is not available yet, you can check out some basic requirements already available. However, it is essential to note that these requirements can change and that there is a possibility that additional documents might be added. Here's what you need to know about the basic requirements:

  • Proof of stable monthly income:

As I have mentioned earlier, you must meet the financial requirements. The financial requirements for a single person are 3,000 USD per month. Remember that you must meet a 4,000 USD monthly income when applying with your family.

  • You must have Proof of health insurance:

Your health and medical insurance must cover you or your family members for the duration of your stay in Costa Rica.

  • Make your Costa Rica DNV payment:

You must make a payment for the granting of your Costa Rica DNV. This payment is required because you are a remote worker or service provider. Although the exact amount has not yet been made public, it would be determined through regulations issued by the Directorate.

  • General Law of Migration and Foreigner's additional requirements:

You may be required to submit additional documents according to the General Law of Migration and Foreigners No 8764.

How To Apply For The Costa Rican Digital Nomad Visa?

So as I mentioned before, the Costa Rica DNV is not available yet, which also means that there are no steps available for the application process. as of yet. However, you can expect the Costa Rica DNV to be similar to other visa applications.

The first thing you would need to do is gather the required documents. Remember that you may be required to submit additional documentation.

The second and most crucial part of the visa application would be to prove that you are a digital nomad. The following documents will act as Proof but are not limited to:

  • Proof of accommodation for the duration of your stay
  • An employment contract
  • A declaration letter stating that you will be working remotely in Costa Rica
  • A letter from your employer
  • Bank account statements that prove substantial financial means during your stay

You must also submit your valid passport, travel insurance, and a visa application form.

After you have successfully applied for your Costa Rica DNV, you will be notified by the authorities that your DNV has been issued.

When Will The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa Be Available?

Much information suggests that the Costa Rica DNV will be launched in mid-2022. Although there aren't any specific dates yet, you can expect them within the next couple of months.

However, suppose you can't wait to go to Costa Rica and want to go as soon as possible. In that case, I suggest you apply for the Costa Rica Tourist Visa. Although you can't work with a Costa Rica Tourist Visa, nothing is said about working remotely.

Do I Need To Pay Income Taxes When Working In Costa Rica On A Digital Nomad Visa?

Obviously, you became a digital nomad for a reason, and who really wants to pay taxes. Well, if you are looking at the Costa Rica DNV, you've just hit the jackpot. According to the General Law on Immigration and immigration law No 8764, digital nomads aren't required to pay income tax.

What Are The Benefits Of Having A Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa?

I know the Costa Rica DVN sounds great, but believe it or not, there's more. As you already know, digital nomads are exempt from paying income taxes. This is already a big deal, but digital nomads are also offered exemptions to pay taxes on all imported essential tools you must use for work. This includes your personal computer, telecommunications devices, or any necessary equipment you might need to fulfill your tasks.

Another benefit that you can enjoy is driving. I know that sounds basic, but you can use your country of origin driver's license in Costa Rica. Guess what? That's not all. Digital nomads can open savings bank accounts through any of the Costa Rica national banks. I know, right? You probably didn't expect that at all. Now you don't have to struggle with banking your hard-earned money and withdrawing it. Digital Nomad banking has never been easier.

Overview Of The Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa

I know the Costa Rica DNV might seem confusing, but there is nothing to worry about. Just check out the following key points that I mentioned above, and you'll be set for your adventure:

  • The new Costa Rica Digital Nomad Visa was implemented under the General Law of Immigration No 8764. Before you are granted the DNV, you must prove that you are a remote worker and meet the financial requirements.
  • Although you work in Costa Rica, remember that you may not work for a company registered in Costa Rica.
  • Your Costa Rica DNV will be valid for 1 year and can be extended for an additional. However, remember that you must provide Proof of a 180-day consecutive stay within your first year.
  • The minimum monthly financial requirements are 3,000 USD for a single person and 4,000 USD for a family.
  • You are exempt from paying income tax. In addition, you do not have to pay tax on imported goods such as your computer or telecommunications devices. You can use your country of origin driver's license and open a savings bank account at a Costa Rican national bank.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you get good Internet in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica ranks 80th in the world in fixed broadband internet speeds, with 43.32 Mbps downloads, according to Speedtest. Costa Rica is well behind the United States (12th, 179 Mbps) and Panama (36th, 111 Mbps) but on par with Mexico (77th, 45 Mbps).

Where do digital nomads stay in Costa Rica?

Here are the most popular cities digital nomads like to stay in. These cities are based on the monthly rental of a house/villa/apartment, a few other English-speaking residents, and plenty of surrounding attractions for those glorious days away from the web.

  • San Jose, Central Valley
  • Santa Teresa, Guanacaste
  • Playa Hermosa, Guanacaste
  • Playa Samara, Guanacaste
  • Puerto Viejo, Limon

You can also check out the 7 best places to visit in Costa Rica.

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