Tag: CostOfLiving

Jan 10 2012

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: Shop at Ropa Americana

Ropa Americana…need I say more? Luckily, there are Ropa Americanas located all over the country. It seems any decent sized town has one, and San Ramon has several. Ropa Americana is like a Goodwill Store in the U.S., mostly men’s, women’s, & children’s clothes, linens, purses, & stuffed animals, at cut-rate prices.  Did I say …

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Jan 10 2012

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: Buy Local

Buy local and avoid stores like PriceSmart, AutoMercado, and other stores that carry expensive imported products and throw your food budget out of whack. Before coming to Costa Rica, we were thrifty food shoppers, spending a little over $450 per month. Our food budget in Costa Rica is about $330 per month.  This savings can …

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Jan 10 2012

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: Eat Less Meat and More Fruits and Vegetables

Perhaps this one’s not fair. Before we came to Costa Rica, living in the Baltimore, Maryland area, our food budget was over $400 per month. Most people thought that that was pretty good, but in Costa Rica, we’ve managed to reduce our food budget by another $100. Our $300 (see note below for updated costs) …

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Jan 10 2012

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: Taking the Bus

Updated 4/12/15 Take the bus!  Well, there it is, my money saving tip of the month. Okay, okay, I’ll explain the savings and the side benefits, but first, you’ve got to leave the car at home. It should be easy, with regular gas currently over $5.00 per gallon. You probably won’t believe this, but some …

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Jan 10 2012

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: $1 Lunch at the Central Market

(Updated May 4, 2015) There are seven Central American Republics, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama, and of these, Costa Rica may be the most expensive.  But the cost depends more on your lifestyle than anything else.  If you really want to simplify your life you will spend less than in …

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Jan 05 2012

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow – The Low Cost of Hair Care in Costa Rica

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow In the States, one of the service businesses that’s recession-proof is beauty and barber services. Everyone needs to have their hair cut (okay, unless you’re bald) and since long hair is not the fashion, most people go to the beauty salon …

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Dec 18 2011

Paul’s Monthly Tip to Live for Less in Costa Rica: The Gold Card-Don’t Leave Home Without It!

In Costa Rica, everywhere you go, Ciudadanos de Oro (golden citizens) are given special treatment. If you are over 65 years old and a legal resident of Costa Rica, you qualify to receive the “Gold Card.” In 1997, Costa Rica established the Ciudadanos de Oro Program to create a culture of dignity and respect for …

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Aug 09 2011

A Real No-Brainer, by George B. Hudson

When my wife Gail and I decided to retire we were faced with some important questions to answer. First of all, where would the retirement money come from other than our small amount of Social Security, and how could we make such a small amount go far enough for us that we could actually enjoy …

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Aug 07 2011

Video – Paul’s Money-Saving Tip: Live at the Cabinas

Check out Paul’s Money Saving Tip #1 Video about where we lived for most of our first four years in Costa Rica. After you watch the video, you can learn more about the Cabinas and contact the bilingual property manager, Cesar, regarding rates and availability at this link.  

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Jul 20 2011

Investing in Colones Certificates of Deposit

While we pay our rent in U.S. dollars, we pay for everything else in colones.  For the last two years, we’ve been using our debit card from our U.S. bank to withdrawal dollars for our living expenses, then walking into a local bank to exchange much of it into colones.  The exchange rate has gone …

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