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Here are Costa Rica Minimum Wages 2018

January 17th, 2018

This post is mainly directed at readers living here or may plan to move to Costa Rica and who employ or may wish to employ a person to work for them either full or part time. They can be Costa Ricans or citizens of another country. To the Minister of Labor, (MTSS) it makes no difference their nationality.  If you hire them as employees, the laws apply to you. If interested, read on! Continue reading »

Domestic airline Nature Air closed by civil authority

January 14th, 2018

The Dirección General de Aviación Civil (DGAC), the civil airline authority has closed Nature Air until further notice due to the apparent lack of three management positions, Director of Operations, Head of Security and a Head of Training. The previous head of training recently was killed in a major crash that claimed the lives of ten US citizens.

Nature Air and Sansa Airlines are the two domestic air services offering flights to the several (about 16) regional airports around Costa Rica. Nature Air also offered service to at least one airport in Panama. These airlines are popular with tourists and provide small planes commonly known as “puddle jumpers”… aircraft with single and dual engines. Prices are reasonable and help travelers avoid the long driving distances to popular tourist spots.

Travelers planning to visit Costa Rica with reservations on Nature Air should consult with their travel agents or directly with the airline to avoid a nasty surprise.  Sansa is unaffected by this closure. There is no indication that this suspension is permanent, but clearly travelers should do some checking prior to travel.  Interestingly, the Nature Air web site mentions nothing about the suspension.




IPTV. How it works and the Skinny!

October 18th, 2017

Some of my readers will immediately understand the letters IPTV.  Others not or maybe sort-of but want the details. (the Skinny).  Still others have no idea but will read this post because they know that when I post, it’s generally valuable info (he said humbly, lol)!

This is going to be a bit more complex post and contains technical stuff so I will try to keep it simple for all readers.

First of course is what is IPTV?  It stands for Internet Protocol Television.

Yeah ok… so what is that? When you watch TV, you must be connected to a source.  Most common sources are streamed ( via cable modem, DSL with modem, etc), Satellite, or even antennas (anyone remember those??).  Wherever you live… IPTV might be a great option, especially in Costa Rica.

OK… decision time.  Interested? read on… Continue reading »

Retirement Options… including Costa Rica

August 16th, 2017

Retirement Options – Humor Alert

Looking for that perfect retirement spot?  Here are some ideas!

You can retire to Phoenix, Arizona where…

You are willing to park 3 blocks away from your house because you found shade.

You can drive for 4 hours in one direction and never leave town.

You have over 100 recipes for Mexican food.

You know that “dry heat” is comparable to what hits you in the face when you open your oven door.

The 4 seasons are: tolerable, hot, really hot, and ARE YOU KIDDING ME??

 

OR

You can retire to California where…

You make over $450,000 and you still can’t afford to buy a house.

The fastest part of your commute is going down your driveway.

You know how to eat an artichoke.

You drive your rented Mercedes to your neighborhood block party.

When someone asks you how far something is, you tell them how long it will take to get there rather than how many miles away it is.

The 4 seasons are: Fire, Flood, Mud, and Drought.

Interested? Read on!

Continue reading »

Medical Care and Options Part 2

April 13th, 2016

MedSymThe purpose of this post is twofold.

First, I want to thank the many readers who communicated with me after my last post, part of which discussed what I had learned from my cancer treatments.  I cannot begin to express how much I appreciate the numerous comments and best wishes I received via email, phone calls, and comments from the various ex-pat groups on Facebook.  Thank you so much!  As an update, I have completed all the treatments (last week), and now I wait.  The doctors are very optimistic and tell me that they believe I have beaten this thing.  Feels great.  I will now take various tests about every 90-120 days to confirm their positive prognosis. Again… thanks to all.  Very unexpected but very appreciated.

As for part 2, from the questions I received, it seems I need to clarify some of the info in my past post. Interested?  Read on! Continue reading »

Medical Care and Options in Costa Rica

March 27th, 2016

I was  diagnosed with cancer last year.

While I thought I had a pretty deep knowledge of medical care both private and public (my wife has been with Calderon Guardia hospital, the second largest CAJA hospital in CR, for 34 years), it turns out I was wrong.  In this post I will share some information on health care in this country and the stuff I have learned.

Medical care in Costa Rica is of interest to not only ex-pats living here or wannabe ex-pats with plans to live here…  but to the many thousands of tourists who visit Costa Rica every year for what is known as medical tourism. Medical tourism we can define as people who visit Costa Rica with the express intent of having various medical procedures done here with the expectation that those procedures may be far less expensive than those same services performed in their home country.  In general, those are realistic expectations, but things are changing.  Over the past several years, medical institutions here have learned the medical tourism is big business and they have responded as expected. There are basically two options here for receiving medical care.  Private (aka for profit) and public (aka the CAJA or socialized medicine). If this topic is of interest, please read on… Continue reading »

Organ Donation in Costa Rica… Oh… and Grab a Kleenex.

January 24th, 2016

I thought that I might share this short video. The content of course crosses international boundaries, but the idea is to get you thinking,

Donating your organs is possible in Costa Rica.  Theoretically you can do it via your residency card or drivers license.  Your might be able to do it through your attorney.  Sound vague? Welcome to Costa Roca

Also… There seems to be some conflict though as it is unclear who owns your body after death.  You or your survivors.

Anyway, by all means think about donating organs.  It’s a good thing.

Zika Virus – A Travel Alert but NOT for Costa Rica… Yet!

January 19th, 2016

ta2I am getting a ton of email asking about the Zika Virus.  In fact… so many emails that I felt I needed to post the hot skinny on this disease.

Most important is the Zika has not yet arrived in Costa Rica.  That’s the good news.  The bad news is that it is now in about 19 other countries, and I know that a lot of folks visiting Costa Rica have travel plans that will take them to one of these other countries.

The next important thing is that Zika has very few symptoms, BUT can have devastating affects to the unborn children of pregnant women who contract this disease in any other other other countries.  Babies are born with very small skulls and apparently some brain damage.

If this topic is of interest to you… read on! Continue reading »

Cost Rica Caribbean Coast is Pretty Much Isolated

June 27th, 2015

Weather conditions have worsened and for all intents and purposes, the Caribbean side of Costa Rica has been cut off not only for travel but much of communications.  The most affected are Siquirres, Matina, Sarapiqui, Turrialba, Limón, Talamanca and Valle de la Estrella.

The only way to the Caribbean area is Route 10 (Paradise-Turrialba-Siquirres) and is regulated.

rt32floodingOn Route 32, at KM 25, a landslide of an estimate  4 billion cubic meters  has closed the highway completely.  Other massive flooding has temporarily affected the fiber optic line disrupting the cellular and fixed phone service near Sarapiqui.

Obviously my readers here in CR know all about this, but folks visiting Costa Rica may well want to find out the current situation on the Caribbean side before setting off. Conditions are dangerous.

Below is a video sent to me by a friend near Guapiles. It pretty much shows the incredible flooding and while in Spanish, it is not hard to understand what he is saying.

Tim

Route 32 San Jose to Puerto Limon Closed

June 24th, 2015

32This major route suffered landslides and will be closed likely until Monday and perhaps longer. Travelers to the Caribbean costs should check the status of this highway before traveling route 32. Rains will continue, so even if open, take extreme caution when traveling along this road.

While there are other routes, they take much longer and may be affected by the heavy rains.

Photo courtesy of La Nacion

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