Costa Rica Live-in Maid for $200

Real Estate Broker/Owner with 2Costa Rica Real Estate

Living in Costa Rica has numerous advantages. The sheer variety of activities available for enjoyment and the spectacular sights you can visit throughout the country make life here a constant adventure. If you add this to the availability of modern conveniences, many large malls to choose from, excellent cultural activities, an exciting nightlife and superb medical services at very reasonable prices, then you can begin to understand why so many people have chosen to live, work, and retire in Costa Rica.

One of the aspects I enjoy most about life in Jaco Costa Rica is the excellent cost of living here which allows your dollar to stretch much further, allowing for services and luxuries that would be much too expensive to afford in the U.S., Canada, or Europe. I will give you a glimpse of the cost of living in this article, so you too can compare what these costs are with those of your own place of residence.

The cost of living in San Jose (the capital of Costa Rica) is among the lowest of any in Latin America. The costs are overall about 30% less compared to those of North America, especially in terms of the cost of service for telephone, electricity, water, and domestic/maintenance services, as well as the cost of frequenting restaurants and movies.

If you add this to the Costa Rica's mild weather, which eliminates the need for cooling and heating, you would really appreciate the cost savings you could have! 

Fulltime live-in maid (Sundays off) - $200 per month

Ticket to see a movie in a modern theater - $5

Minimum price to see a cultural event at the National Theater - $8

Ticket to see a First Division Soccer Team Match - $12

An excellent steak dinner in a good restaurant - less than $20

Basic commercial phone service - $8 per month

Basic cable TV service - $27

Cable internet home service (1 Meg download/256k upload) - $39

Men's haircut & shampoo at luxury barbershops - $15

Men's haircut at local barbershop - $9 

La Nacion, Costa Rica's leading daily newspaper - $0.38

A bottle of Coca Cola - $0.53

A pound of beans - $0.41

A bottle of Imperial beer - $0.67

A pack of local cigarettes - $0.95

Bus ride from downtown San Jose to Escazu - $0.60

Bus ride from San Jose to Jaco Beach (60 miles) - $2.40

Suzuki ATV-Ozark LT-f250 - $5,195 (out the door)

Suzuki ATV-Z400 - $8,100 (out the door)

Harley Davidson XL 883 Sportster - $9,664

Harley Davidson XL 883C Sportser Custom - $11,436

2007 Honda CR-V 4x2 SUV - $33,000

2007 KIA Rio Hatchback 1400cc with extras - $15,600

2007 Toyota Prado (6 cyl) Diesel 4x4 - $37,600 (fully loaded)

While some imported manufactured items such as appliances, TV's, computers, and vehicles are more expensive, they are usually one time expenses. However, your daily and recurring expenses are much cheaper here and you can also enjoy a higher standard of living in Costa Rica, a country that has most of the comforts of living found in North America and Europe. When you can have a full-time maid for $200 and a driver for $400, your lifestyle experiences a significant transformation and you can also enjoy luxuries you could otherwise not afford to pay for back in your home country. Taking everything into consideration such as the great year-round climate, the friendly people of Costa Rica, political stability, a relatively low crime rate, and a truly peaceful country which has no military, it's a wonder you are not living here already!

Posted by

Lisle Head

Managing Broker

2 Costa Rica Real Estate


Comments (13)

Linda Greco Rich, ABR, SRES
Exit Preferred Realty - Bel Air, MD
Harford County Specialist

Hmm... the maid service is appealing!

Sep 01, 2008 12:25 PM
Eric Reid
Renaissance Realty Group of Keller Williams Atlanta Partners - Lawrenceville, GA

Now the cost to purchase and the laws around home ownership ...I am so ready to build a 5 year plan to get an adventure living life style

Sep 01, 2008 12:30 PM
Sean Allen
International Financing Solutions - Fort Myers, FL
International Financing Solutions

Coooool, That looks quite appealing to me.

Sean Allen

Sep 01, 2008 12:34 PM
Miriam Martir
Keller Williams - Metuchen, NJ

I have been blessed to visit this wonderful country and even Tabacon and the volcano hot springs. It is a beatiful country and the only thing that will make it better is to repair the roads.


Sep 01, 2008 12:37 PM
Kristin Andrews
Squished Grapes - Plymouth, MA

Living in Central or South America is definitely my retirement plan!  Very beautiful places, wonderful warm people, and many opportunities. 

I'm so happy you're found you're utopia! 

Sep 01, 2008 01:21 PM
Lisle Head
2Costa Rica Real Estate - International, IT
Costa Rice Real Estate - Costa Rica Real Estate Investments

Once you visit you will never want to leave. The people are great and they remind you to enjoy life and that things will happen when they are supposed to happen.  Pura Vida :-)

Sep 01, 2008 01:38 PM
Denise Allen
Resh Realty Group - Chesapeake, VA
Realtor@ Chesapeake, Hampton Roads

Sounds like a neat place.  Maybe I should sell and move on down to you guys.

Sep 01, 2008 01:55 PM
Debbie Hutchins
Birmingham, AL

Great information...I will print this out and take it with me shopping....hmmm not to sure about those car prices tho.



Nov 10, 2008 01:06 AM
Mike Butson
The Davis Company - Austin, TX
Realtor & Sales Trainer

Other than the higher cost of motorcycles and cars, sounds like a good escape.

Nov 10, 2008 01:18 AM
Tim Nebergall
Front Page Rankings, Inc. - Modesto, CA
SEO Web Design Engineering - Rank Better On The Search Engines

OK Lisle, you talked me into it... I'm on the next flight  :)

Nov 10, 2008 08:21 AM
Agencia Migratoria, Marlon

Sorry but this is way old... to have a maid in Costa Rica it will average out to about $550.00/month + you're responsible for employee benefits... like federal health insurance, mandatory 1 month x-mas bonus, mandatory yearly vacations, seniority, not to mention that they need to have a legal work permit if they're not Costa Rican, or you may get fined up to $5,000.00, (most employers just help them get their permit at a fraction of the fine). $200.00/month??? maybe 10 years ago... coca cola $1.60, movie theater $15.00/ticket, beer $2.20 each... and gosh.. there are hardly any good steak houses here and if you do find one, a good one, its about $50.00 the entre.... cigarettes $6.00 a pack.... these are the real prices 2014... by the way they go up every year without a doubt... DON'T GET ME WRONG, I LIVE HERE AND WILL CONTINUE TO LIVE HERE... BUT DON'T BE FOOLED INTO THINKING ITS AN INEXPENSIVE PLACE TO LIVE.... COSTA RICA IS VERY BEAUTIFUL AND can live very comfortably with about $3,000/month, and comfortably with about $1,700/month.

Jun 07, 2014 02:00 PM

I am looking for maid services for a week near Liberia. I am going on Vacation and my lady doesn't won't to cook or clean:-S. Email me any suggestion.

Apr 16, 2016 11:58 AM

The above post is right on the head. Make no mistake, from the time of that posting, prices for certain things has risen since then. For example, as of July 2019, there is a new Value added tax (VAT), which is 13%. THIS COUNTRY IS NOT CHEAP TO LIVE IN! You lose your Americanized amenities the further away you live from San Jose as well. Some things are still affordable, but not many. Maid service somewhat still cheap if you employ a few hours a day, instead of a full time position. Shipping anything to Costa Rica, such as purchasing anything from Amazon dot com, is going to cost you a lot in shipping, VAT, and import tax. Visit and stay in the country for least 6 months so you get an understanding of what will piss you off before you put ANY money into this country. Also understand, some laws are literally written against foreigners and thier wallet, so review laws here that you think may impact your future.

Sep 24, 2019 11:25 AM