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Moving To Costa Rica

🇨🇷 Costa Rica, (CR)

Costa Rica International Moving Services

Moving is an arduous undertaking and international relocation is especially complicated. Compared to state-to-state moving, leaving for another country comes with its own set of rules and regulations. The distances covered are also very long which makes the requisite logistics a tough undertaking for a person to tackle alone.

Moving To Costa Rica

Moving to Costa Rica Cost & Time Examples

To/From    2BR    4BREstimated Time
Jacksonville to San Jose$3,300- $5,500$6,200- $10,1003-5 weeks
LA to San Jose$3,300- $5,700$6,300- $10,5003-6 weeks
Seattle to Alajuela$3,500- $5,700$6,400- $10,5003-6 weeks
Detroit to San Jose$3,500- $5,800$6,300- $10,4003-5 weeks
Dallas to San Jose$3,500- $5,900$6,400- $10,7003-5 weeks
Atlanta to Alajuela$3,600- $5,900$6,500- $10,8003-5 weeks
Portland to San Jose$3,600- $6,000$6,800- $11,2003-6 weeks
Columbus to San Jose$3,900- $6,400$6,900- $11,6003-5 weeks
Las Vegas to San Jose$4,000- $6,500$7,300- $11,9003-6 weeks
Chicago to Alajuela$4,000- $6,700$7,300- $12,1003-5 weeks

*Please note that these estimates do not include taxes, customs fees & duties, insurance & quarantine inspections. They assume easy access to both pick up and drop-off addresses and do not allow for special items such as pianos.

Estimated Weight (based on home size): 1BR=2600 lbs - 3900 lbs 2BR=3900 lbs - 5200 lbs 3BR=6500 lbs - 9100 lbs 4BR=9100 lbs - 14300 lbs 5BR=11700 lbs - 19500 lbs

Import duties imposed by Costa Rica

An international move often comes with import duties - though some countries offer exemptions. Costa Rica does not extend this courtesy to foreigners moving into the country. Your shipment of household goods will incur the standard import duty, which is typically around 37%. This rate is charged on the combined amount of the shipment’s value, and the cost of shipping and insurance (CIF) (1).

Documents required by Costa Rica

In order for your shipment to enter the country, you’ll need to provide customs with the appropriate documentation. This includes your passport and a packing list written in either Spanish or English. Your Original Bill of Lading or Air Waybill is also required (2).

A separate inventory with the values for your items is necessary as well. This should list the brand, model and serial number of all electronic goods and appliances included in your shipment. You’ll also need to attach the purchase receipt for any new items. Customs will want to see documents showing you’ve purchased insurance for your shipment as well (3).

Import duties imposed on your vehicle

Consistent with their policy on household goods, duty exemption is also not available for vehicle importation. According to one trustworthy source, you’ll pay between 45% - 70% (5) to bring your vehicle into Costa Rica. However, it goes on to say that you could end up paying more than the vehicle’s total value, just in import duties. How this works isn’t clear - so consult Costa Rican customs to learn more (4).

Documents required to import your vehicle

You must have the necessary paperwork, to bring your vehicle into the country. You’ll need a valid driver’s license and your passport. The vehicle’s title and registration is also required, along with a certified emissions test. A temporary use permit (TVUP) should be submitted as well, and written authorization from the car’s owner (if you don’t own the vehicle). Finally, customs will want to see your Original Bill of Lading (6).

Though the above lists give you a good idea of the regulations you’ll face and the paperwork you must provide - it’s not comprehensive. Other forms and rules will apply, to both your shipments of household goods and vehicle. Speak to Costa Rican customs directly, to learn all the requirements for importing your belongings.

Tips on how to make your international move easier

  • Start early: As already pointed out, international moving is not the same as hopping across states. It is therefore important to start your preparations early. Most international moving companies advise their clients to begin preparations about 90 days before the day of moving. This will help you get everything in order and avoid delays with customs.
  • Visa and passport: Moving overseas requires both a visa and a passport. Ensure that you have done enough research on what type of visa you require when looking for Costa Rica International Moving Services. Visit the Embassy of Costa Rica’s website for more information. Also, ensure that you make an application for a passport through the US Government.
  • Visit: There is nothing as intimidating as going to a new place. Even scarier is relocation to a foreign country. It is therefore, a good idea to visit your chosen destination in Costa Rica just to have a feel of where you will be moving to. Make sure that you engage with the local people to get as much information as possible.
  • Save money: Moving overseas is a costly affair. You need to be intentional and careful about your spending. The way to do this is have a budget in place. It will help you keep your spending in check.

A-1 Auto Transport can help you move your household goods internationally. Call 888-509-3213 to get a free, no obligation to buy price quote on interstate moving services.


Why you need a professional moving company when relocating overseas

Professional movers have the experience needed for such an undertaking. Certainly, it would be almost impossible if you decided to handle everything by yourself. This is because it is very strenuous and time-consuming. You will also, be at the risk of losing or damaging your belongings.

However, professional movers will help you pack and secure your belongings without any damage incurred. They also have relevant equipment designed to make the process stress-free.

How to find the best international moving company

When looking for Costa Rica international moving services search the internet or ask friends and family for recommendations. Make a list of at least three companies then research on the following:

  • Find out if the company you are interested in is duly licensed.
  • Read customer reviews on the respective companies’ websites.
  • Compare their rates and find a professional mover with the best estimate.
  • Ensure that the company you choose has insurance that caters for damage on belongings during transit.

Our Costa Rica international moving services

We offer the following:

  • Packing/unpacking: We offer packing services to and from our transport facilities.
  • Commercial moving: We offer international moving of offices and businesses. This includes moving office equipment and other assets.
  • Apartment moves: We help in relocating between rental apartments.
  • Planning and preparation: We offer assistance in getting your household goods in order prior to the day of moving. This includes helping you put your belongings in batches to make it easy come the day of moving.
  • Visa and immigration services: We also help in visa application and registration services at the Costa Rica immigration department.
  • Housing assistance: We offer help in locating suitable housing.
  • Family services: We assist our clients to locate and find suitable providers of basic family services such as schools and health facilities.
  • Auto transport: We also handle the international moving of vehicles.

Why A-1 Auto Transport?

We have over 30 years experience in moving services. Indeed, we have helped thousands of people with overseas moving services. Whether you want to retire or just want to relocate abroad, we have you covered. We also have the resources and knowledge to make sure that you have all the information that you need. Indeed, if you have any questions regarding international moving, rest assured that we have the answers.

Talk to us

If you are thinking of moving from the US to Costa Rica, we are the perfect international moving company for you. Talk to us by contacting our experts on our toll-free number 888-509-3213. Please don’t forget that you can also get free estimates of our services by filling-in the form at the top of this page.


  1. Found on Atlas Int’l “Importing Personal Property Into Costa Rica” page.
  3. Found on Moverscom “Moving to Costa Rica” page.
  5. Atlas Int’l “Importing Personal Property Into Costa Rica” page.
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Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing. 

After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood. 

With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.

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Mylene Rutllant
It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.

And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.

When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!

I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.

The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.

They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?

So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought they were lacking customers, but the email spoke for itself. In just one email, everything I needed to know was there, including a contact number I could use to get more information or confirm the transport.

I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!

The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!

Testimonial by Cristine Benoit
Cristine Benoit
I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.

After doing some research, I got even more worried reading about all the scams and accidents that can happen. But, I have work to do and couldn’t afford to drive my newly purchased Mini Cooper all the way to Virginia.

Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport. They are very good at their jobs. I spent more than an hour drilling Joe with various questions, and he never once lost his patience. He saw I was interested, so he bore with me until I was satisfied. The driver was also very courteous and my car was intact on arrival. I couldn’t have asked for more.

By the way, the price we first agreed on stayed the same. There were no delays or unexpected “surprises.” I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

David Osallo
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10!

We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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