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Moving to Costa Rica with Children

Costa Rica is one of the world’s top destinations for tourism and relocation. Many Americans, Canadians, and Europeans are moving to Costa Rica with children every year and their children are very happy. In order to make sure your move goes smoothly and your children enjoy their new home, you will want to consider using a company such as Send me South who can help you move here seamlessly.  Send me South can help you identify the right schooling options for your kids and give you background on all the appropriate schools worth looking at.  Furthermore, Send me South helps families by setting up interviews, taking you to the schools, showing you neighborhoods close the schools, and giving you orientation tours of the areas you are considering living in.

It is a good idea whenever you move to a new place with your children, to let your child finish his or her current school year. This is helpful to assign your new grade level to your child after you move, as different school systems use different standards to place children. In Costa Rica, in addition to the public school system, you will find a number of private schools. You will want to research if you want your child to attend a public or private school. Once you know the region of Costa Rica you will be moving to, you will need to see which schools are available for your children. The public school system in Costa Rica has two levels, primary and secondary. This can differ from your current school system, so you will need to be in touch with the Costa Rican school in advance to see what level your child will be placed in. Keep in mind as well, the Costa Rican school year runs from February to December, with the longest break of the school year spanning December and January. You should plan your move accordingly to start your child at the beginning of a new school year, if possible.

Moving to Costa Rica with Children

Sunset tag on a desolate beach.

You will also want to consider the language factor. Spanish is the primary language spoken in Costa Rica. If your child attends public school, he or she will be immersed in Spanish, which can be great for your child to learn another language. This may be too difficult or intimidating at first though, so you may consider placing your child in a private school, or look for a bi-lingual public school, so your child can slowly learn the language. Again, this will depend on which part of Costa Rica you move to, as there are more options for schooling closer to San Jose.

Costa Rica can seem like one big playground for children, with monkeys, sloths, toucans, frogs, and lizards running all around, beaches and jungles to play in, and soccer games galore! But do make sure that your child is aware of the dangers of Costa Rica as well. There are venomous snakes and other harmful wildlife that you will want to teach your children about so they can avoid encountering them. Learning how to stay safe in a new environment is important to ensure you and your children enjoy your move to Costa Rica. As the parent, you will want to do your own homework so you can help your child adjust to his or her new surroundings as safely as possible.

If your child is a picky eater, you may want to start introducing Costa Rican food before you move, so that he or she isn’t shocked by the food choices when you arrive. The main staples of Costa Rican food are beans and rice and a casado, or set meal, usually also includes a type of meat and side of veggies. If your child only eats grilled cheese sandwiches and mac n cheese, you’ll be able to find restaurants that cater to foreigners, but it’s nice if your child can adapt to the Costa Rican flavors, as this will open you up to a new world of food and restaurants. If you are along the coast, there is no end to wonderful, fresh seafood. The supermarkets throughout the country offer many imported products from around the world, so you will be able to stock your kitchen with favorites from home. This can make the transition easier for your children as well.

Lastly, before you and your children move to Costa Rica, you will want to look into health insurance to keep your family safe and healthy. Costa Rica has socialized health care, which means coverage is easily accessible, but you may also purchase private health care, which gives you access to more hospitals and clinics throughout the country. Send me South offers several medical insurance programs for our clients to consider.  Take some time looking into different policies before making your decision on which provider to use.  Also, be sure and speak with your current doctor to make sure you and your children are up to date on vaccinations and check-ups before moving to Costa Rica with children.

Moving to Costa Rica with Children

Learning to sail the high seas!

With a little bit of planning, you and your children will be happily moving to Costa Rica. It is a beautiful country with so much to offer and can be a wonderful place for children to grow up. Just be sure and do some research in advance to ensure you and your children have as easy a time as possible when you move to Costa Rica. Pura Vida!

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