Cost Of Living in Costa Rica

Average monthly spending for singles, couples, and families in Costa Rica

Whether you're living in Costa Rica or planning to move there, it is very important to know the cost of living and the prices of things. Here we list the average spending for the three main population groups.

Average Spending Per Month
All-inclusive

Single
1,900,000 CRC
average per month
470,000 CRC
Range
4,000,000 CRC

Couple
3,600,000 CRC
average per month
710,000 CRC
Range
5,700,000 CRC

Family
5,700,000 CRC
average per month
1,700,000 CRC
Range
8,500,000 CRC

Student
1,400,000 CRC
average per month
240,000 CRC
Range
3,100,000 CRC
The figures displayed here are inclusive of everything: housing, travel, groceries, healthcare, etc.

Singles

The average monthly expenses for a single person living in Costa Rica is 1,900,000 CRC. Expenses can range from 470,000 CRC at the minimum level to 4,000,000 CRC at the highest end.

Couples

The average monthly spending of couples in Costa Rica is 3,600,000 CRC. Expenditure can range from 710,000 CRC to 5,700,000 CRC per month.

Families

The average cost of living for families in Costa Rica is 5,700,000 CRC per month. Families spend anywhere from 1,700,000 CRC to 8,500,000 CRC.

Students

The average monthly expenditure for students in Costa Rica is 1,400,000 CRC. Students spend from 240,000 CRC to 3,100,000 CRC per month.


Spending behavior can change drastically from one person to another. It is best to consider the minimum, average, and maximum spending together.

Prices and cost of goods and services in Costa Rica

Dining, food, and beverages costs


Large bottle
of water

470 CRC

470 CRC
470 CRC

Fast food
combo meal

4,700 CRC

3,400 CRC
7,900 CRC

Restaurant
meal for one

16,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
20,000 CRC

Fine dining
meal for one

39,000 CRC

26,000 CRC
47,000 CRC

Soda
Soft Drink

390 CRC

390 CRC
390 CRC

Cappuccino
or latte

3,200 CRC

2,000 CRC
4,700 CRC

Grocery and market costs


Milk
large bottle

2,400 CRC

2,000 CRC
2,600 CRC

Loaf of
bread

340 CRC

300 CRC
390 CRC

12
eggs

2,400 CRC

2,000 CRC
3,000 CRC

Fresh whole
chicken

5,500 CRC

4,300 CRC
6,800 CRC

Beef
1 kg or 1 lb

6,200 CRC

5,300 CRC
7,900 CRC

Rice
1 kg or 1 lb

3,400 CRC

3,000 CRC
3,900 CRC

Tomato
1 kg or 1 lb

1,600 CRC

1,300 CRC
2,000 CRC

Apples
1 kg or 1 lb

1,700 CRC

1,500 CRC
1,800 CRC

Banana
1 kg or 1 lb

1,600 CRC

1,400 CRC
1,800 CRC

Commute, travel, and transportation costs


20 minutes
taxi ride

2,400 CRC

2,000 CRC
4,700 CRC

Average car
full tank

16,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
32,000 CRC

Average car
1-day rental

16,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
24,000 CRC

Average car
price

12,000,000 CRC

5,900,000 CRC
16,000,000 CRC

Bus ticket
one way

590 CRC

390 CRC
1,200 CRC

Car
Service

24,000 CRC

16,000 CRC
47,000 CRC

Utility cost (monthly)


Electricity
and water bill
Single

110,000 CRC

28,000 CRC
240,000 CRC

Electricity
and water bill
Couple

140,000 CRC

36,000 CRC
280,000 CRC

Electricity
and water bill
Family

230,000 CRC

50,000 CRC
260,000 CRC

Internet
and cable

24,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
32,000 CRC

Mobile phone
charges

16,000 CRC

9,500 CRC
47,000 CRC

Leisure and activities costs


Movie
ticket

7,900 CRC

5,900 CRC
12,000 CRC

One month gym
membership

24,000 CRC

19,000 CRC
47,000 CRC

Cloths and accessories costs


Pair of jeans
or pants

20,000 CRC

14,000 CRC
30,000 CRC

Woman
dress

18,000 CRC

13,000 CRC
59,000 CRC

Woman
shoes

17,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
39,000 CRC

Men
shoes

13,000 CRC

11,000 CRC
26,000 CRC

Men
suit

15,000 CRC

12,000 CRC
79,000 CRC

Regular
t-shirt

7,900 CRC

5,900 CRC
24,000 CRC

Housing costs / monthly rent


Studio
apartment

300,000 CRC

200,000 CRC
790,000 CRC

1-bedroom
apartment

470,000 CRC

300,000 CRC
1,200,000 CRC

2-bedroom
apartment

590,000 CRC

390,000 CRC
1,600,000 CRC

Housing costs / Buying


Studio
apartment

59,000,000 CRC

39,000,000 CRC
120,000,000 CRC

1-bedroom
apartment

79,000,000 CRC

47,000,000 CRC
300,000,000 CRC

2-bedroom
apartment

240,000,000 CRC

79,000,000 CRC
470,000,000 CRC

Furniture Costs


King Size
Bed

300,000 CRC

240,000 CRC
390,000 CRC

Double
Bed

240,000 CRC

160,000 CRC
300,000 CRC

Single
Bed

180,000 CRC

140,000 CRC
240,000 CRC

Living
Room

340,000 CRC

260,000 CRC
1,200,000 CRC

Dining
Table

160,000 CRC

120,000 CRC
300,000 CRC

Sofa
or Couch

220,000 CRC

160,000 CRC
470,000 CRC

Electronics Costs


TV
Set

240,000 CRC

160,000 CRC
470,000 CRC

Fridge
or Freezer

220,000 CRC

140,000 CRC
300,000 CRC

Washing
Machine

260,000 CRC

180,000 CRC
470,000 CRC

Stove
or Cooker

220,000 CRC

170,000 CRC
300,000 CRC

Mobile
Phone

240,000 CRC

200,000 CRC
340,000 CRC

Laptop
or Computer

260,000 CRC

220,000 CRC
470,000 CRC

How do people spend their money in Costa Rica?

We asked thousands of people about their spending habits and expenditure breaks. Below are their answers.

The percentage figures in this section are percentages of total spending not income. If you would like to see the percentage of expenses as related to income or salary, see additional sections below.


Single
Spending habits, consumption analysis, and expenditure patterns for a single person living in Costa Rica

Housing36%

36% of total expenses on average (27% to 42%)

LOW170,000 CRC
AVERAGE680,000 CRC
HIGH1,500,000 CRC
Per Month

Utilities, Electricity, Water6%

6% of total expenses on average (2% to 9%)

LOW28,000 CRC
AVERAGE110,000 CRC
HIGH240,000 CRC
Per Month

Transport, Fuel8%

8% of total expenses on average (3% to 11%)

LOW38,000 CRC
AVERAGE150,000 CRC
HIGH320,000 CRC
Per Month

Food and Groceries16%

16% of total expenses on average (9% to 22%)

LOW76,000 CRC
AVERAGE300,000 CRC
HIGH640,000 CRC
Per Month

Healthcare9%

9% of total expenses on average (5% to 14%)

LOW43,000 CRC
AVERAGE170,000 CRC
HIGH360,000 CRC
Per Month

Leisure, Shopping5%

5% of total expenses on average (2% to 9%)

LOW24,000 CRC
AVERAGE95,000 CRC
HIGH200,000 CRC
Per Month

Education2%

2% of total expenses on average (1% to 4%)

LOW9,500 CRC
AVERAGE38,000 CRC
HIGH81,000 CRC
Per Month

Other Expenses18%

18% of total expenses on average (15% to 21%)

LOW85,000 CRC
AVERAGE340,000 CRC
HIGH730,000 CRC
Per Month


Couple
Average monthly living expenditure breaks and spending patterns for couples in Costa Rica

Housing33%

33% of total expenses on average (30% to 43%)

LOW230,000 CRC
AVERAGE1,200,000 CRC
HIGH1,900,000 CRC
Per Month

Utilities, Electricity, Water5%

5% of total expenses on average (2% to 8%)

LOW36,000 CRC
AVERAGE140,000 CRC
HIGH280,000 CRC
Per Month

Transport, Fuel12%

12% of total expenses on average (7% to 15%)

LOW85,000 CRC
AVERAGE430,000 CRC
HIGH680,000 CRC
Per Month

Food and Groceries14%

14% of total expenses on average (7% to 19%)

LOW100,000 CRC
AVERAGE500,000 CRC
HIGH800,000 CRC
Per Month

Healthcare11%

11% of total expenses on average (5% to 14%)

LOW78,000 CRC
AVERAGE390,000 CRC
HIGH630,000 CRC
Per Month

Leisure, Shopping6%

6% of total expenses on average (3% to 10%)

LOW43,000 CRC
AVERAGE210,000 CRC
HIGH340,000 CRC
Per Month

Education2%

2% of total expenses on average (1% to 4%)

LOW14,000 CRC
AVERAGE71,000 CRC
HIGH110,000 CRC
Per Month

Other Expenses17%

17% of total expenses on average (14% to 20%)

LOW120,000 CRC
AVERAGE600,000 CRC
HIGH970,000 CRC
Per Month


Family
Average monthly expenses and break out of spending for families living in Costa Rica

Housing32%

32% of total expenses on average (27% to 38%)

LOW530,000 CRC
AVERAGE1,800,000 CRC
HIGH2,700,000 CRC
Per Month

Utilities, Electricity, Water3%

3% of total expenses on average (2% to 7%)

LOW50,000 CRC
AVERAGE230,000 CRC
HIGH260,000 CRC
Per Month

Transport, Fuel8%

8% of total expenses on average (5% to 10%)

LOW130,000 CRC
AVERAGE450,000 CRC
HIGH680,000 CRC
Per Month

Food and Groceries18%

18% of total expenses on average (12% to 23%)

LOW300,000 CRC
AVERAGE1,000,000 CRC
HIGH1,500,000 CRC
Per Month

Healthcare8%

8% of total expenses on average (6% to 12%)

LOW130,000 CRC
AVERAGE450,000 CRC
HIGH680,000 CRC
Per Month

Leisure, Shopping5%

5% of total expenses on average (2% to 9%)

LOW83,000 CRC
AVERAGE280,000 CRC
HIGH430,000 CRC
Per Month

Education14%

14% of total expenses on average (11% to 18%)

LOW230,000 CRC
AVERAGE800,000 CRC
HIGH1,200,000 CRC
Per Month

Other Expenses12%

12% of total expenses on average (8% to 15%)

LOW200,000 CRC
AVERAGE680,000 CRC
HIGH1,000,000 CRC
Per Month


Student
Cost of living and expense breaks for students in Costa Rica

Housing24%

24% of total expenses on average (18% to 31%)

LOW57,000 CRC
AVERAGE340,000 CRC
HIGH740,000 CRC
Per Month

Utilities, Electricity, Water4%

4% of total expenses on average (3% to 7%)

LOW9,500 CRC
AVERAGE57,000 CRC
HIGH120,000 CRC
Per Month

Transport, Fuel7%

7% of total expenses on average (5% to 9%)

LOW17,000 CRC
AVERAGE100,000 CRC
HIGH220,000 CRC
Per Month

Food and Groceries20%

20% of total expenses on average (16% to 24%)

LOW47,000 CRC
AVERAGE280,000 CRC
HIGH620,000 CRC
Per Month

Healthcare6%

6% of total expenses on average (3% to 9%)

LOW14,000 CRC
AVERAGE85,000 CRC
HIGH180,000 CRC
Per Month

Leisure, Shopping5%

5% of total expenses on average (2% to 9%)

LOW12,000 CRC
AVERAGE71,000 CRC
HIGH150,000 CRC
Per Month

Education19%

19% of total expenses on average (17% to 24%)

LOW45,000 CRC
AVERAGE270,000 CRC
HIGH590,000 CRC
Per Month

Other Expenses15%

15% of total expenses on average (12% to 17%)

LOW36,000 CRC
AVERAGE210,000 CRC
HIGH460,000 CRC
Per Month
This section breaks down and compares expenses for all population groups: singles, couples, students, and families. If you want to see details for a specific group, please see the previous section. We asked thousands of people about their spending habits and expenditure breaks. Below are the results.

Housing Expenditure

People living in Costa Rica typically spend from 26% to 39% of their total monthly expenditure on housing with 31% being the average. The average spend on housing is 1,000,000 CRC with expenditure ranging from 250,000 CRC and 1,700,000 CRC. This cost mainly goes for rent but it also includes other accommodation-related expenses. Housing costs are highest for families and lowest for students as expected.

Utility Bills and Payments

On average, utility expenditure like electricity, water, and gas in Costa Rica ranges from 2% to 8% of total expenses with 5% being the the average. The average monthly cost of utilities is 140,000 CRC with 31,000 CRC and 230,000 CRC being the upper and lower limits.

Transportation Cost and Fuel Consumption

Fuel consumption and cost of transport depend heavily on whether you live near your work or school, but roughly speaking you would expect to spend from 68,000 CRC to 480,000 CRC on commuting with 280,000 CRC being the norm for most people in one month. This means that money spent on transport constitutes about 9% of total spending on average but can go as low as 5% or as high as 11%.

Cost of Food and Groceries

The average outlay on groceries in a month in Costa Rica is 530,000 CRC. The cost of groceries can range between 130,000 CRC to 900,000 CRC. People spend on average about 17% on food and groceries with upper and lower bounds of 11% and 17% respectively.

Cost of Healthcare and Medical Services

People in Costa Rica allocate 5% to 12% of their total monthly expenditure to healthcare including health insurance and out-of-pocket medical expenses. The average spending is around 9%. The range of medical expenses range from 67,000 CRC to 460,000 CRC with 280,000 CRC being the norm.

Leisure and Shopping

This category mostly contains discretionary or non-essential expenses but also some non-discretionary spending like furniture for example. The monthly expenses range from 40,000 CRC to 280,000 CRC with 170,000 CRC being the average. Speaking of percentages, that equates to 2% to 9% of total expenses with an average of 5% for most residents.

Cost of Education and Schooling

Spending on education can vary drastically between different people. While working singles can spend 0% on education, families and students' expenditure can reach up to 22%. On average, education constitutes 9% of the monthly expenditure with 8% and 13% being the lower and upper bounds respectively. The average reported education cost is 290,000 CRC per month with 75,000 CRC being the minimum spent amount and 490,000 CRC being the maximum.

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