30 Reasons Why You Should Not Move to Costa Rica

by Herb DeMars
By C. Howard from the Tico Times October 9, 2021
Over the years I have had the opportunity to observe first-hand thousands of foreigners who have relocated to Costa Rica. Many fulfill their of dream of living in paradise by adapting to the country’s culture and taking advantage of all it has to offer. I have heard people say, “I love Costa Rica so much, you could never drag me back to my home country.”
Success stories abound here.  For many who move here it is a chance to start over, develop new hobbies and interests, make friends,  find adventure,  live in a different culture or study a foreign language.
However, things do not always out for some who relocate. According to the Association of Resident of Costa Rica (ARCR) and my sources in the moving business, about 40 percent of those who come here end up returning home for a variety reasons: 
  • Unrealistic expectations
  • cannot adjust to the culture
  • illness
  • a divorce or break up and missing their children,  grandchildren, other relatives or life back home, etc.
That said, there other reasons why some should not relocate to Costa Rica in the first place to avoid failure and have to return home.
  1. Don’t like warm weather or rain.
  2. Expect everything to be like the U.S.
  3. Think the locals should change and do everything like we do.
  4. Expect to find all of the products from the U.S.
  5. Insensitive to the local culture.
  6. You are a smartass, self-righteous and know it all “Ugly American.”
  7. You are going to refuse to speak any Spanish and think that the locals should speak English.
  8. You think it is easy to go into business and expect to get rich overnight.
  9. You are a male who is into exploiting Latina women and think younger women here will be attracted to you because of your good looks and not your money.
  10. Have a serious drug or alcohol problem.
  11. Expect all of your problems to go away just because you move abroad.
  12. Think you are more intelligent than the locals and can beat the system.
  13. Think you can become an expert overnight as some expats do.
  14. Think you are the saviour of the locals and will civilize them. You should leave the Second Coming of Christopher Columbus Syndrome at home.
  15. You want to scam or rip off other expats.
  16. Feel that just because you are an American you should be entitled to something.
  17. Have no tolerance of other cultures.
  18. Have no sense of adventure
  19. Have no interest in experiencing the country’s culture and people.
  20. Don’t realize that you are a guest in the country.
  21. You and your spouse don’t see eye to eye about relocating to another country but do anyway….a récipe for disaster.
  22. Have no sense of humor 
  23. Have no goals
  24. Refuse to affiliate with organizations  like clubs, church groups or volunteer.
  25. Suffer from the "hammock" or couch potato syndrome with nothing to do.
  26. You are a negative person who likes to complain about everything and everyone.
  27. Have never traveled or lived abroad.
  28. Really don’t have enough money to live abroad and think that you can do it.
  29. You are the type of person who gives Americans a bad name.
  30. You are a fugitive on the lam. Eventually you will be caught and deported
Christopher Howard has been conducting relocation/retirement tours and writing retirement guidebooks for more than 30 years.  Excellent books if you are looking to move to paradise – HD
October 9, 2021

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