Costa Rica is among the most popular countries in Central America and one of the best places to Teach English in Costa Rica. With stunning beaches, rainforests, a rich culture, and friendly people, it is not hard to understand why many people choose Costa Rica as a destination to teach English. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll take a deep dive into everything you need to know to teach English in this fantastic country.

Qualifications Required

To teach English in Costa Rica, you will need a Bachelor’s degree and a TEFL or TESOL certificate or a teaching license. The government of Costa Rica requires these qualifications from foreign teachers to protect the country’s education quality. Additionally, most private language institutions require their teachers to have a minimum of one year of teaching experience.

Visa Requirements

If you’re not a citizen of Costa Rica, you’ll need a work visa to teach English legally. Costa Rica offers foreign nationals a variety of visas, but the one most commonly used by English teachers is the “Religious” or “Missionary” Visa. After you have acquired your job offer from an employer in Costa Rica, the government will recommend you obtain a temporary residency. Once you arrive in the country, the school or organization will help you obtain this visa.

Job Prospects

Teaching English in Costa Rica is in high demand, especially in highly populated cities such as San Jose, Alajuela, and Puntarenas. Many schools, universities, and language institutions are always in search of native English speakers to join their staff. You can also find English teaching jobs advertised on the internet through websites such as Indeed and Craiglist.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Costa Rica is relatively low compared to most western countries, but it still varies depending on factors such as accommodation, transportation, and food. Rent prices differ depending on the city and the location of the home, with prices ranging from $450 to $1500. A meal in an inexpensive restaurant costs around $6, and transportation in Costa Rica is relatively cheap. As a teacher, you can earn between $1000-$2000 a month, and this salary is enough to cover your living expenses comfortably.

Cultural Differences

Costa Rica has a rich culture and welcoming people, and it is important to appreciate and respect the country’s customs and traditions. Costa Ricans (Ticos) are known for their friendly attitude, and they enjoy spending time with foreigners, talking about their country and their experiences. Being aware of their culture, learning some Spanish, and being flexible will help you navigate the cultural differences and quickly adapt to Costa Rican life.


Teaching English in Costa Rica is an excellent experience that offers great opportunities to grow, learn, and discover a new culture. Costa Rica is a place that values education, and English teachers are always in high demand. By taking note of the information in this guide, you are better prepared to navigate the requirements and process to become an English teacher in Costa Rica. Have a great time teaching, learning, and living in this beautiful country!

By Johnson