Costa Rica is a dream destination for adventure seekers, eco-tourists and those who simply love nature. However, it is not just the beautiful landscapes that attract people to this Central American country – its friendly locals, warm weather and vibrant culture make it an ideal place to live and work. One of the most popular professions in Costa Rica for foreigners is teaching English. If you are considering a move to Costa Rica and want to Teach English in Costa Rica while you’re there, this guide is for you.

Qualifications and Requirements for Teaching in Costa Rica

While a degree in teaching or education will certainly help you land a teaching role in Costa Rica, it is not always a requirement. Having a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification or experience teaching English as a second language can go a long way in helping you establish yourself in the job market. The minimum requirement to teach in Costa Rica is a bachelor’s degree in any field. However, most programs will require a TEFL certification, and some may require teaching experience.

Where to Find English Teaching Jobs in Costa Rica

There are many opportunities to teach English in Costa Rica. The most popular places to search for jobs are the classified sections of websites like Craigslist, popular job boards like Indeed, and the Teach Away website. Additionally, you can also search for private language schools in the area you want to work in.

Understanding the Salary and Living Costs in Costa Rica

Teaching English in Costa Rica can provide a comfortable life, although salaries vary depending on the position and your qualifications. As a new teacher, expect to make around $600 to $800 a month, depending on where you are located. However, many schools offer a bonus system based on performance, so your salary could increase over time. Cost of living in Costa Rica is generally cheaper than in the US or Europe. You may find that your money doesn’t go as far in touristy areas, so it’s important to do your research on different cities before making a decision.

Getting a Work Visa to Teach in Costa Rica

In order to work legally in Costa Rica, you will need to obtain a work visa. You can do this by applying for it at your local Costa Rican consulate or embassy. The requirements for a work visa include a passport with at least six months of validity remaining, a clear background check, and a work contract signed by an employer in Costa Rica. It is recommended that you start the visa application process prior to arriving in Costa Rica as it can take up to 90 days to be processed.

Tips for Living and Teaching in Costa Rica

One of the best things about living in Costa Rica is the focus on “puravida” or living the good life. You’ll enjoy a laid-back pace of life and a welcoming community. However, some things can take time to get used to – like the heat and the bugs – so it’s important to prepare yourself mentally and take things slow. As a teacher, you should also be prepared to be flexible and adaptable. Embrace the Costa Rican culture and try to learn some Spanish. This will help with daily communication and connect with locals.


In conclusion, teaching English in Costa Rica can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. With the right qualifications and preparation, you can find a job that will allow you to live and work in this beautiful country. Don’t be afraid to do your research, polish your teaching credentials, and immerse yourself in the local culture. Most importantly, enjoy your time in the land of “puravida”!

By Magnolia

Magnolia Kate Chambers: Magnolia, a vintage home enthusiast, shares restoration tips, antique decorating ideas, and the charm of vintage living.