Playas del Coco is known for being a fun beach town, a popular destination for expats and locals, and its weather. Though Costa Rica is a tropical country with dry and rainy season, there are some areas that can get cold to the point where you’ll need a sweatshirt and long pants. However, Playas del Coco is not one of those. Instead of jackets and socks, your wardrobe will consist of tank tops and flip flops. Living at the beach means you have more swimsuits than you ever had in your life and your flip flop collection is bigger than your jeans collection.
Although the weather is one of the reasons many expats choose Playas del Coco and also why visitors come to Guanacaste, it does come with its downsides. The rising cost of electricity is one of them since air conditioning is absolutely necessary when living in dry heat for more than 6 months of the year but it has become almost a luxury with how expensive it gets.
New homeowners will want to keep this in mind so that they aren’t shocked when they get their first electricity bills. Whether you’re living here full time or part time, here are some things you can do to help lower your electric costs.
Don’t leave your air conditioner on when you’re not at home
This one is the most obvious but many North Americans don’t take heed to this small action that not only saves you money, but helps the environment. Turning your AC off for the hours you are out during the day adds up and can save you hundreds of dollars. Don’t leave it on if you’re going out for the night or going to the beach for the day and you’ll see the difference in $ immediately.
Maintain your air conditioners
If you just bought a home or condo, make sure you get all the air conditioners checked. Some of them may be very old and need to be checked or even replaced. If left unchecked, they’ll spend more energy trying to work and cost you more. In the long run, you’ll end up paying more than if you had just hired someone to fix it or bought a new one.
Unplug and turn off what you don’t use
Another one that sounds obvious but isn’t done as much. It may not seem like it’d make a difference but turning off lights in rooms you aren’t in, turning off the lights and ceiling fans when you’re not home and unplugging appliances you’re not using will help immensely. A lot of people have the misconception that fans spend next to nothing but it’s not true. If you’re leaving fans on that you’re not using for hours everyday, it will add up as well.
Another thing that will help is turning off the breakers. If you’re a snowbird or in Costa Rica for part of the year, turn off the hot water and air conditioner breakers if nobody is living in your place.
When it comes to choosing the right retirement destination, it’s not an easy one. First you have to narrow it down by country and that’s hard enough! There are several great countries in the Americas ideal for retired expats as they have all the necessary requirements they look for.
Costa Rica is one of those countries. Being extremely tourist friendly with sunny weather and excellent healthcare, retirees normally don’t find it too hard to adjust to a life down in the tropics. Though there are several pockets of expat communities spread out throughout the country, there is one place in particular that retirees love to go especially if they want to live at the beach. And that place is Playas del Coco.
So what makes Playas del Coco such a great retirement town in Costa Rica? Here are some reasons to help you decide if you want to join the little Coco community.
Why Retire in Playas del Coco?
You’re at the beach
Playas del Coco is a small beach town in the province of Guanacaste, the province known for its beautiful beaches. The town is small enough that no matter where you are, you’re always just a short walk away from the beach. If you’ve ever dreamed of living your days strolling on the beach and watching the sunset, Coco is a wonderful place to do so.
Though Coco is not the typical white sand beach, it still has its own beautiful characteristics with dark sand and soft waves. Not only that but it’s a family friendly beach so it’s normal to stop and chat or say hi to people while taking your morning or evening walk. The atmosphere is fun, warm and relaxing. The ultimate essence of pura vida.
There are many other retired expats or snowbirds
Don’t ever worry that you won’t meet people or make friends when in Coco. There is a large community of retired expats in and around the Coco area, so much so that you can even make friends when you’re out having dinner.
There are more retired expats in this area than other beach towns, making it easy to meet new people who are in the same life stage. There is always something going in the expat community as well whether it’s weekly meet ups at the bar, book clubs or simple dinners and get togethers.
Coco is a touristic area
Since Playas del Coco is such a touristic area, the locals there are extremely used to seeing foreigners. One of the fears of retiring abroad is how to fit in with the locals but the Costa Ricans in Coco are helpful, friendly and love to meet and talk to people.
Another bonus is that many of them speak English since majority work in the tourism industry. Though it is always recommended to learn some Spanish, it does make things a bit easier for a retired expat.
Another upside to living in a touristic area is that there is always something to do. The beach already offers itself as an activity but with many tourists visiting every year, more opportunities come up such as sunset sailing, fishing, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, boating and much more. It also gives your friends and family an enticing incentive to visit you – you can give them a trip of a lifetime!
Playas del Coco is in a convenient location
25 minutes from the airport, 2.5 hours from the Nicaragua border, 1 hour from a national park, 2 minutes away from the next beach. Need I say more? It’s in a great location to explore the area and whether you just want to lay in the pool or at the beach, you’ll never be bored in Coco.
This is a question that many people ask and it’s a hard one to answer. Though Costa Rica is indeed a small country, every province and region varies in terms of weather, cost of living, and even the local people. The answer to this question largely depends on who is asking it – what are they looking for in their new home country? Do they want to live by the beach or in the mountains? Are they looking for something similar to their previous home or something simpler?