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What to tell the Parents

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To go, or not to go?
Hell yea, are you stupid?
 100%  [ 3 ]
Not unless you want to risk getting your butted sent home!
 0%  [ 0 ]
Total Votes : 3

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Joined: 31 Jan 2005
Posts: 3
Location: USA>Costa Rica

PostPosted: Mon Jan 31, 2005 9:00 pm    Post subject: What to tell the Parents Reply with quote

Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed
For all of you working or who have worked in Costa Rica:

I have been offered a position to teach English for one year down in San Jose. How can I ease my parents' fears about my working in Costa Rica illegaly (no visa)? From what I've learned it is very much the norm to just leave the country every 90 days, but has anyone every gotten in trouble for doing this?

Doesn't immigration begin to suspect something when they see your passport stamps strategically spread out every 90 days? Has anyone ever had a problem with not being let back into the country? Has any American ever gotten arrested or deported for this? Could something like this come back to haunt me some day if I, lets say, decide to run for President =)?

Not to mention, doesn't that darn twenty something dollar exit fee get expensive after a while?

Also, should I buy a round-trip ticket rather than a one way so that they don't see that I am actually coming to stay? I worring unnecesarrily? Can anyone tell me anything to ease mine and my parents's fears that I am making a bad choice in going down.
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Joined: 19 Apr 2004
Posts: 18
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica

PostPosted: Thu Feb 03, 2005 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

first of all, what company offered you the position? that will make a big difference on whether your stay here is a pleasant one. there are a lot of companies with extremely sketchy reputations, but a lot of good ones as well.

second of all, there are no problems going in and out of the country every 90 days. As long as you're not nicaraguan, the boarder people don't give you a second look. And if they do start to ask questions, remember, you don't know a word of spanish (even if you do). trust me, this works. they get annoyed and stamp you on through. this didn't become a touristy country by hassling foriengers all the time. And there's no $20 fee to get in and out. I think there's an airport tax to that effect, but nothing if you take the bus in and out. Nicaragua charges an $8 cover fee and $3 exit fee, but other than that and your bus ticket there are no expenses.

oh, and you don't need a round-trip ticket. the airline might demand that you have one, but then you can just fly a different airline. I can't remember which ones require it. the worst that will happen is that they'll make you buy a return ticket before you can leave customs.

my advice: parents worry too much about stuff (mine included). they were young and stupid once, they just forgot how much fun it is to not have a mortgage. don't worry, everything will work out.
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Joined: 13 Oct 2003
Posts: 147

PostPosted: Sat Feb 05, 2005 12:12 am    Post subject: border crossings Reply with quote

I might add a note from my own experience. When coming back from a ´visa´run to Panama, it was mandatory to show a ticket out of Costa Rica before they´d let me back in the country. I came down on a one way ticket and i have no idea when or from where i´ll be returning to the great white north country. This little problem was solved by going to the little store on the corner before crossing the border and purchasing a bus ticket back from the nearest town in costa rica (Sixaola) into panama for a week later. it was a total of 3 dollars! i´m sure they sell lots of these phantom tickets. But it was enough for immigration to let me back in.

The university i work for is now in the process of obtaining work visa´s for all teachers and they tell me that other uni´s are starting this as well. So maybe the era of the ´visa run´will soon come to an end. (soon, in Tico time!)

You can tell your parents not to worry, I´m a single white female, 49 years young, and have been here for 8 months now travelling around on my own and loving it and have had no problems at all. Use common sense and safe travel habits and you´ll be fine.

good luck
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