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Mixed opinions on the safety level in Costa Rica - what do you think?


in Costa Rica by @geo_care | 5yr  | 8 comments

Hi everyone,

I did a bit of research about Costa Rica and got my feelings all mixed up. I know that it is considered safe in comparison with the rest of SA but how safe is it? I read on a forum that you cannot walk with your backpack every day as you will probably get mugged (gunpoint included). Is this true?
I am a solo female traveler and pretty easy target Iโ€™d guess. The other topics here on Costa Rica contain very little info. Your feedback would be much appreciated. :slightly_smiling:

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@levelsio | 5yr

Itโ€™s okay if you stay in more resort-ey places, but it gets grimey outside there, especially at night. I was near Puerto Viejo.

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@chrispreynolds | 5yr

I spent a year in Costa Rica, and I think it is very safe. It is like anywhere, there are places you should go and places to stay away from. Not looking like a lost rich tourist will help you. My girlfriend at the time and myself walked/bussed everywhere with our backpacks. Most all people there are friendly and helpful. In my opinon, San Jose is not the place to hang out, but most other places are great. I do know a few gringos who got robbed. One group of friends slept with their windows open which is fine but there were no bars on the windows. So, donโ€™t rent a place without bars on the windows. The thieves snuck in when they were asleep. The other incident was when a couple of female friends had their house broken into and their computers stolen. The third incident was when the same female friend whom had her computer stolen was walking alone at night and someone came up and ripped her gold chain off her neck. Each of these incidents can easily be avoided I believe. First off, the friends whom had their houses broken into lived in an area I wouldnโ€™t live. It was cheap and decent living, but in a crappy area of Quepos. And as a female, never walk alone late at night. As for guns, they are few and far between in CR. Almost non-existent in CR from my experience. It is good for you to know there are TONS of female solo backpackers going through CR every year. Find some others and latch onto each other for support. Use the hostel networks and recommendations of people you trust. If you have a bad feeling about somewhere or someone, get out ASAP. It is not a bad idea to carry pepper spray. There is about a 99% chance you will NOT use it, but couldnโ€™t hurt. Costa Rica is an amazing country and a great place for digital nomads and backpackers, so have fun, enjoy yourself and soak it up. PS. CR was my first place living abroad and my family and friends had me worried to death about getting robbed. After two months of constant worry, I realized I was making myself miserable and being ridiculous, so I quit and spent another 11 months enjoying the heck out of the country. I never got robbed and loved my time thereโ€ฆEnjoy!!!

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@geo_care | 5yr

Hi Chris,

Thank you so much for sharing! It doesnยดt sound very comforting, though :). I think I will wait a while or gather up a bit more experience first as a solo traveler and then try it out.
Safe travels!

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@geo_care | 5yr

Thank you so much, guys. I just have to be extra careful I guess. I also talked to the The Beach Office manager in Tamarindo - Leona and she basically confirmed the above adding though the positive points like nice international community, yoga, art and other activities classes. She also offered to introduce me to her friends and other nomads around. :slight_smile: She was extremely nice, I must say.

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@lightmotif | 5yr

Yes, there are many lovely people in CR. That area will have a lot of expats, and more modern condos, if you like that kind of thingโ€ฆ safety level is probably fine. I havenโ€™t been myself so have no idea about the vibe except itโ€™s supposed to be quite busy, hot and dry until April. The natural, open-air bungalow-style living on the Caribbean side attracted me more, though the prevalence of creepy-crawlies is not for everyone. :slightly_smiling: Loved waking to howler monkeys in the morning though - magical.

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@lightmotif | 5yr

I spent about 4 months total in Costa Rica last year. Itโ€™s pretty safe for a solo female traveler, but itโ€™s got its problem spots. There is theft and on rare occasions, with guns, and targeting tourists, but you just donโ€™t want to be on isolated roads, Iโ€™d say, for long. Unless youโ€™re wandering in national parks during daylight, stay around people, donโ€™t leave belongings lying on beaches without asking someone to watch them. Thatโ€™s pretty much the rule I follow anywhere though. I lived in San Jose a bit, walked through some sketch neighborhoodsโ€ฆ no problems. But mostly I was just south of Puerto Viejoโ€ฆ walking alone at night along isolated roads in the Puerto Viejo area is a NO-NO โ€“ there have been incidents, but only in the isolated parts. If I was traveling from PV town to my bungalow in Cocles alone at night Iโ€™d take a cab or sometimes a bike with a light, for a short distance. I had no problems and would go back. I wouldnโ€™t advise Cahuita or Limรณn though, personally.

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@borowis | 5yr

It depends. What backpack you have, what you carry in it, how big you look, where do you walk, at what time, how you behave with strangers etc. etc. I didnโ€™t feel safe in Costa Rica. I didnโ€™t feel safe in Panama or Argentina. Itโ€™s barbed wire everywhere, steel bars on every window. Itโ€™s just part of their culture. Did it stop me from going there? Not at all. In fact, there are many wonderful people there which will make you feel good : )

My experience with Latin America: month in Argentina, 2 weeks in Panama, 2 weeks in Costa Rica. Got back pack stolen on a beach in Manuel Antonio.

UPD So, Iโ€™d avoid big towns at night / with backpack like San Jose or San Carlos. Stick to smaller places: Manuel Antonio, La Fortuna, Monte Verde, Puerto Viejo etc., preferably when other folks around.

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@wanderingdev | 5yr

Most of it is no more dangerous than anywhere else. You just have to make sure to not make a target of yourself.

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Where do I get good legal advice/support to have a long-term stay?


in Lisbon, Portugal by @mzorrilla | 1mo 1 month ago | 1 comment

Hello, everyone!

My idea is to stay as low as 6 months and as long as a year (maybe, who knows) over Lisbon after doing some analysis from many cities in Europe.

I'm an Argentinian and Chilean (both nationalities) so... no Euro-pass for me (getting my Italian nationality could take 2 years easily). I'm also a remote worker and I have a really good income (I work for a Silicon Valley company) so I can show more than enough resources to stay in the country.

Everything I see online doesn't inspire me much confidence (most sites looks a bit scammy) and this is not a "vacation stay"... I want to be clear my head far away from Argentina right now. If someone has a good website, recommendations, etc I will super appreciate.

Thanks in advance!

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Do you prefer co-living spaces or hostels or Airbnbs?


by @davda1546 | 3mo 2 months ago | 5 comments

We are hoping to become nomads soon and have booked an AirBnB in September in Goa for our first destination. We are considering what would be the best option for accommodation after that. We are trying to decide between co-living spaces, hostels, or Airbnbs.

What are your experiences of accommodation in terms of the following: reliable wifi, social aspect, pricing, cleanliness, cooking facilities?

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Can Americans with EU Passports Travel to EU during COVID-19?


in France by @fqlx | 3mo 2 months ago | 1 comment

I'm a dual citizen of America and France with my resident based in the America. Can I travel to the EU using my French passport?

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How is the health and safety in Bali right now amid the global crisis?


by @valentineworld | 7mo 6 months ago | 1 comment

I would like to avoid having to come right back home, ya know? <3

I plan to be in Bali a lot, but if this is a terrible time to go,
it could stunt my future plans of being in Bali for an extended period of time.

Would love to see you guys! <3

@valentineworld

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Has anyone created a list of co-living spaces around the world?


by @keegansard | 7mo 7 months ago | 4 comments

Iโ€™m a big believer in co-living but Iโ€™m finding hard to find all the options available in different cities.

I have found the major players like Roam, The Collective, and WeLive but havenโ€™t found many others.

Has anyone seen a list or should I start making one?

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What investment options are open to e-resident?


by @64tankman | 7mo 7 months ago | 1 comment

I know from experience that if you have residential status in countries where IG (a broker) serves, you can buy stocks and other assets through this broker. But I wonder what doors to the stock market, asset market or broker can be unlocked with e-residency? Some banks open a terminal for customers to buy assets overseas too, is one of the e-residency friendly bank offering a good portfolio of assets to invest in?

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My first time nomad-ing... Spain or Portugal?


in Portugal by @jasraj | 8mo 8 months ago | 6 comments

Hey everyone,

Iโ€™m a freelance + nomad newbie, off for my 1st proper trip in May. Iโ€™m wanting to spend a month somewhere and go from there.

I just came back from Slovenia/Ljubljana and loved it there (just a week). I donโ€™t mind โ€œsleepierโ€ places par-say, as long as theyโ€™re close to a beach or nature of some kind. In fact, I kinda like places less-busy and a bit smaller/cosier.

Iโ€™m been swaying towards Porto, but have been impressed by the rave reviews Iโ€™ve seen for Valencia.

-> Have you every nomad-ed in a Spanish/Portuguese city? Iโ€™d love to know where and what you liked/disliked :slight_smile:

Thanks! :slight_smile:

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Warm and dry place - June to November


by @nomadsince2010 | 9mo 8 months ago | 4 comments

I have been doing Southeast Asia during June to November for 11 years. Rainy, Typhoons - is wild - still warm but ya - getting older so not as into that. Where can go is warm and dry - not super hot like Vegas but warm and has to be DRY. Good Internet and affordable. Ty

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Central America - Where and what's next?


by @as11 | 9mo 8 months ago | 11 comments

Currently in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico and heading to Santa Teressa, Costa Rica next week.
Then Aruba in the Caribbean Sea for Christmas and New Year.

However I feel I want to head back to Central America to bring living costs down, rather than staying in the Caribbean Sea among the expensive Islands.

This means I have around 2 - 2,5 month of unplanned travelling.
Any digital nomads who have ideas about where to head in that timeframe?

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Best place for Digital Nomad in Latin America?


by @rose_davis | 10mo 10 months ago | 7 comments

Hi!

I am planning to move to Latin America for 3-4 months (Oct-January). Iโ€™ve narrowed down 6 different places that I want to visit before committing to settling down, but Iโ€™d love to get some community input.

Here are the cities Iโ€™m considering:

  • Quito, Ecuador
  • Cuenca, Ecuador
  • Medellin, Columbia
  • Cartagena, Columbia
  • Antigua, Guatemala
  • San Marcos La Laguna, Guatemala

The most important things Iโ€™m looking for:

  • Fast/easily accessible internet
  • Easy to meet other nomads/make friends in general
  • Safe for women
  • Some sort of spiritual community (Iโ€™m also a yoga teacher)
  • Easily walkable city

Anyone have any experience with these places and can give some insight? Iโ€™m also completely open to other recommendations.

Thanks!
Rose

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Where to move for tax purposes as a non-US citizen?


by @mender | 1yr 1 year ago | 5 comments

I am a New Zealander looking to travel for a couple of years in different countries. For this purpose I would ideally like to shift my company to a lower tax territory where I will live part time, as I am currently taxed at roughly 33% in New Zealand, however itโ€™s closer to 40% when I add in all the hidden taxes.

With a move I wonโ€™t be living in NZ so Iโ€™ll no longer be obliged to pay any tax after 320 days.

I ideally would wish to be a tax resident of the country I incorporate in. What country is easiest to do this through? A large chunk of my business relies on PayPal which requires your bank account to be from the same country your company is registered. Thus I canโ€™t do anything such as BVI or small islands.

Tbh my best bet looks to be Dubai Free Zones at this point and I can do some travel in europe from there.

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What is your ergonomic set-up while traveling?


by @caseyr | 1yr 1 year ago | 18 comments

What is your ergonomic set-up while traveling?

I personally have an external keyboard, and am currently exploring getting a laptop stand, some lumbar support, and a trackball-mouse.

What do you use? How are you balancing health / portability?

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Where to travel to in South America in the summer?


by @sergiosa_la | 1yr 1 year ago | 2 comments

I have a month between Playa del Carmen and Medellin, and Iโ€™m deciding which city to be. Itโ€™s on november so itโ€™s summer in this region, what do you guys choose?

ps. just in case, Mexico is not south american

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Here is the itinerary of our trip to Costa Rica; what would you recommend?


in Costa Rica by @nomad4 | 1yr 1 year ago | 2 comments

Hi everybody,

for those who read us in the past, we made some changes to our plan for this winter.
We decided for several reasons to postpone our trip to SEA, and decided to leave for a month in Costa Rica instead. Weโ€™ll still be travelling with our 2 kids and will need to work a little as well.

This is our itinerary for the month. 39

For those whoโ€™ve been there, how long do you think we should stay at each place?
We were planning roughly:

  • 1 week in Tamarindo/Nosara
  • 2-3 nights in Monteverde
  • 2-3 night closer to the Arenal volcano
  • 2-3 night in Quepos
  • Uvita for undetermined period of time

Do you think thereโ€™s a place (among the ones we cited or else) we should consider to stay a little longer?

Thanks :slight_smile:

Magali and Guillaume

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Best American phone carrier for nomads


by @tylertringas | 1yr 1 year ago | 12 comments

Iโ€™m surprised this isnโ€™t anywhere on the forum yet. But just a pro tip for Americans about to start a nomad adventure. T-mobile offers unlimited SMS & data in 120 countries for FREE with any of their (already pretty cheap) plans. Itโ€™s ideal if you plan to be back in the US for any part of the year, but I honestly would consider it even if youโ€™re going to be entirely out of the country.

You get bumped down to much slower 3G speeds, but itโ€™s free and works as soon as you land. Can be super helpful before youโ€™ve sorted yourself out with a local SIM. I usually keep my T-mobile SIM in my iPhone all the time and then buy a local SIM and drop it in my pocket wifi for both laptop and iPhone when needed. I keep my local US number and just use it (itโ€™s like $0.05/min in most places) for important clients calls so they donโ€™t have to bother with Skype.

Iโ€™m not affiliated at all, just a happy customer. Anybody found a better deal worth mentioning?

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Cheap Cities in Mexico & South America with Fastest Wifi


in Mexico by @jnomad30 | 1yr 1 year ago | 3 comments

Hi Guys,
Iโ€™m planning out my next stops after leaving Medellin, Colombia soon where I can hunker down and get some work done with fast wifi and cheap living. Will be in Mexico first so starting a look there but wondering if coming back down to South America might make more sense?
My main concerns are budget and fast enough wifi for me to work from home. Other considerations are some nomad community (ideally also some English speaking expats as my Spanish is basic) and warm enough weather.
Thanks in advance!

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Should we go to South East Asia or Latin America with kids?


by @nomad4 | 1yr 1 year ago | 2 comments

Hi guys!

Weโ€™re leaving on Dec 1st for a 5-month DN experience with our kids, but we have second thoughts on our journey. We were supposed to do a trip in South-East Asia (Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia). Weโ€™re from Canada, and our clients are all in Canada right now (weโ€™re digital marketing consultants).

After comparing destinations, weโ€™re starting the think Latin America may be a better choice to make sure we keep most of our clients during these 5 months (same timezone). Also, it seems Latin America fits our needs too :

  • cheap (actually often cheaper than Chiang Mai according to Numbeo)
  • great weather (sunny while less hot than Asia)
  • business continuity : good wifi connection, limited time difference
  • learning opportunity : one single language = great opportunity to improve our Spanish
  • relaxed pace of life
  • kid-friendly
  • relatively safe (see countries below)

So here are our 2 options ; which one would you recommend for our criteria?

A: SEA : Thailand (Chiang Mai and a couple islands in the South), Indonesia (Bali and Lombok), Malaysia (Penang)
B: Latin America : Mexico (Playa Del Carmen/Tulum), Colombia (Medellin), Peru (Lima and other TBD towns), Chile (Santiago and other TBD towns), Argentina (Buenos Aires and other TBD towns).

Thanks!

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Property Ownership - should digital nomads buy properties?


by @sparrow_23 | 1yr 1 year ago | 16 comments

I have been a digital nomad for the last couple of years. I have always worked in tech and now run a couple of profitable online businesses that give me a reliable income and allow me to fund a nomadic lifestyle.

I recently exited one of my businesses and I am considering to invest the income from the sale in properties, mainly for 2 reasons:

a) I donโ€™t want to keep wasting my money in renting apartments across the cities I stay

b) I believe in properties as investment and I want to diversify my investment portfolio (mainly stocks)

After years of constant wander from one place to another, now I am the type of digital nomad who sticks to few locations: I mainly rotate across 4 places each year (San Francisco, Medellin, Berlin, Bali). Buying a house in each of those location would be difficult and too expensive. Therefore, I was wondering if there was any sort of service that combines an investment opportunity with the ability to access different properties around the world (even if just for a limited time per year) ?

Imagine living in 4 cities per year and having a house in each place that you can exclusively use for 3 months and at the same time having your investment growing (this depending on the market, of course). Wouldnโ€™t that be great? I believe it could be done via a property fund selling you a share and giving you access to some of their properties for a limited timeframe each year.

Has anyone heard of anything like that?

Thanks!

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Any Estonia e-residency company viritual office provider that accepts cryptocurrency?


in Estonia by @64tankman | 1yr 1 year ago | 0 comments

I previously use Profia. Contract is ending and I want to have someone who accepts crypto payment instead.

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Ko Lanta or Ko Phangan - which island is better for a digital nomad?


in Ko Lanta, Thailand by @melinda | 1yr 1 year ago | 6 comments

Iโ€™m currently in Penang, Malaysia and I was thinking to head to Thailand next. What are the best islands in Thailand to get some work done? I was considering either Ko Lanta or Ko Phangan because those both islands have coworking spaces. I might need to take some client calls, also video. Is the wifi good enough? Are there any other differences between the islands?

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