A little background before we begin:
I’m 39 years old and happily married to a wonderful Costa Rican woman.   I have two children from a previous marriage (also a Costa Rican) and I have been living in the country for the past 15 years.   Does that make me an expert on Costa Rican Women? Definitely not, but I do have some opinions that I would like to share with you in hopes to guide you in your pursuit. 

TRIGGER WARNING

Sharing an opinion in this day and age is dangerous. People are so easily triggered and look for ways to be offended. It is impossible to answer questions like this one without using some generalities and addressing some stereotypes. If you are easily offended/triggered or look for underlying hate in everything you read let me suggest the following: 547 Funny Cat Videos (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vqtL3D-Se4U&list=PLJHfedoaM2Z1OdIjmqH8nUEhpktnT4g8Y) followed by 3 hours of Safe Space Play Time. Don’t forget your “PlayDoh” and Coloring Pages. Everyone else...feel free to read on!

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During my single years between marriages I had the opportunity to date a variety of Costa Rican women from varying backgrounds, each one was completely unique. When meeting someone new I had a running joke where I would ask them if they spoke English and if they enjoyed the television series “Grey’s Anatomy”. If the answer to BOTH of these questions was “Yes” I quickly moved on.

My strategy with these questions was to find what I considered to be an uncorrupted beauty. It took me a considerable amount of time to first determine what I was seeking in a partner and to be honest with myself as to what things were really important to me. That answer isn’t going to be found in any article but you should determine it for yourself before seeking anyone no matter their country of origin.

So what set’s Costa Rican women apart from the ones I had met in the United States?

Worldly!

Ticas typically follow the news. Not only as it relates to their own country but also world events and politics from other countries. I am always impressed when my wife can not only explain local politics to me but has an understanding of the U.S. system and can name the Prime Minister of Canada. Judge me for my choices with North American women but the ones I ran into had little interest in world events or how those events impacted others.

Passionate

Passion is a beautiful double edged sword. That passion extends both in amorus forms as well as anger. Oddly this is one of my favorite things about Costa Rican women. There is no doubt when they are upset and they don’t make you play guessing games as to why. This means it is possible to resolve fights much quicker than through the seemingly never-ending game of asking “What’s wrong….” You will absolutely know it when you have upset your Tica.


Opinionated:

While this may not differ drastically from their North American counterparts it is fun. Ticas aren’t shy about sharing their opinions and defending them through debate. Where the two diverge seems to be where those opinions get resolved. Although they can passionately defend a point of view they are also willing to consider and actually digest other people's opinions. This allows them to be more fluid and open minded.

Family Oriented:

Family is extremely important to Costa Ricans in general, as it should be. My wife has 4 other siblings in total and on occasion they fight like cats and dogs. The really impressive thing is how they come together against a common obstacle or should anyone wrong a family member in any way.

TIP: When your tica is complaining about a family member be careful with your opinion and opt for silent support. Keep in mind that as quickly as she angers her sibling it will be redirected to you if you overstep your bounds by berating a family member too fiercely.

*PRO 

Generous and Non-Materialistic:

That Pura Vida attitude that everyone talks about applies also to Costa Rican women with regards to material items. While there are certainly exceptions to this rule for the most part Ticas are content with what they have and focus more on enjoying today than worrying about what they don’t have. Everyone likes the comfort that money brings but finding a good woman would include one that realizes that money is a tool as opposed to a necessity. Costa Rican women seem to understand this more naturally, they are accustomed to managing what they have and when there is excess they are generous with it, as opposed to hoarding it for a rainy day.

Traditional:

Dare I say submissive? When did this become such a dirty word? Maybe it is due to my Christian beliefs but I did discover that I personally was seeking a more traditional relationship. In this case I am defining a traditional relationship in the sense that the leader of the household is the man.

Raise your hand if you are triggered! If you made it this far then keep in mind that this what I was personally looking for and if you want and seek out a Costa Rican woman that is the leader of your household, you won’t have any trouble finding a “mandona” either. All types for all preferences.

Most Costa Rican women grew up with strong father figures that led the family, paired with an opinionated mother who managed the household. I’m not sure why this is such a bad thing and frankly I think more credit is due to the women that act as the glue of a home. I believe we were designed in pairs for a reason as we are stronger together and ultimately a ship can have only one captain. That by no means is to suggest that the “first mate” offers no value but it does suggest that you can’t have more than one person at the helm making the final decision. I believe the best case scenario is to determine strengths and delegate accordingly releasing control where your partner is better suited for a particular task.

God Fearing:

Generally speaking Costa Rican’s have a relationship of some kind with their creator. God is still a part of most schools and it is not uncommon to see a Bible in the night stand, or displayed at a business. (Pizza Hut in Heredia comes to mind). These religious values play into the typically more traditional roles which I find refreshing and attractive.

Beautiful:

No article on Costa Rican women would be complete without addressing their natural beauty. Often they are described as some of the most beautiful women in the world. Costa Rican women also come in just about every shape, size and color imaginable, so finding one that you find attractive isn’t going to be a problem. The real problem is looking beyond that beauty and justifying your choice based on the other qualifiers that are longer lasting and ultimately more important.

Well Mannered and Classy:

While it can be easy to offend Costa Ricans with our bluntness you will find Ticas to be well mannered and classy. There is an “air of confidence” that adds to the class they exude. They seem to have a good balance of knowing they are attractive without letting it become some obvious that it becomes unattractive. Those good manners were also formed from an early age most likely guided by a flying sanda (chancla) thrown by a mother that happened to be out of range with her “Barejon”l (a thin switch typically from Tamarindo bush)

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Where to find a good one:

Are you sold?   Ready to start your search for your ideal Costa Rican woman?   Perfect, now get out of the bars, leave the waitresses alone and let’s find you a good one.   Age needs to be considered when searching for your perfect mate. It is easy to get distracted by a beautiful tica that you have a generational gap between age wise.   Yes you can certainly find some good ones even with 15 years of separation but generally speaking try to find one that is closer to your age. Where you find her is also important.   I would suggest doing the things you love to do and approaching the ones you meet along the way. The bars, casinos are fun but don’t complain when things don't work out. The same would be true anywhere in the world.   Volunteer, join groups where you have a personal interest, try a church or genuinely participate in the community, there are plenty of good women out there but you probably aren’t going to find her waiting on a bar stool. 

Foreigners + Ticas a powerful combination:

Typically Costa Rican men carry with them certain traditions and mannerisms that are colloquially categorized as machismo. Whereas North Americans are generally more attentive, sweet and look for ways to show the one they care about how special they are. This means it is easier to impress and stand out above your competition. That said you should also moderate these sweet gestures as they may be overwhelming for a Tica that hasn’t experienced that before. To me, the most compelling reason why Costa Ricans and North Americans make for a good couple is how they balance each other. Ticas remind us that we work in order to live as opposed to live to work. While the North American man will help balance out their enjoy today and worry about tomorrow's later mentality.

Do Costa Rican Women (Ticas) make good wives?

Well I certainly think so.  I’ve now married two of them so that either means I am a masochist or I have found something that I haven’t been able to find within my own culture here in Costa Rica.   That co-mingling of cultures ends up making for a powerful combination and it really exposed some of my own character that has changed for the better by experiencing the Costa Rican culture.

Breaking Up:

Costa Rican women will also be quick to end a relationship but also quick to come back. That fiery passion they have can come out in an argument and they will decide that “Hasta Aqui, mejor me voy!” (That’s it, i’m outta here). The rash decision to break up has a way of giving them time to consider and decide if the offense was really worth terminating the relationship. I used to joke that I needed to check Facebook to see whether I was in a relationship or not before going out with friends as on occasion it would be modified after a seemingly meaningless argument. If you are wondering, No I didn’t marry that one. Keep in mind that this whole breaking up and getting back together can also play a role in your new relationship. She most likely has a series of exes that are vying or hoping for her return. Be aware of this but don’t allow paranoia to stop you from enjoying yourself with her.

In smaller beach towns where there are limited options in the dating pool this is especially common, so much so that we joked about “never losing your girlfriend, only your place in line”

Tips & Suggestions:

Be an old school gentleman: Open car doors, guide her through crowds, and if given the opportunity to meet her family, ask for permission before dating.

Kissing on the check: This traditional gesture is commonplace and you will find yourself being kissed far more often than you ever expected. This kiss really isn't a kiss at all, it’s more along the lines of brushing cheeks or coming close without actually even touching. Be mindful of this and save your wet lips for your significant other. It should also be understood that this manner of greeting or saying goodbye should not be misinterpreted as anything romantic.

Prostituion is legal here but not all women are prostitutes: Seems obvious right but you would be surprised how often visitors to the country forget this and make disrespectful overtures or cross a line.

Don’t be Jealous: Costa Rican’s are amorous people and you will often see them address each other with terms of affection that might make you raise an eyebrow. Amor, Cariño, even Bebe. I would go so far as it would be better to be the poor sap that got cheated on rather than the insecure fool that ruined a good relationship by allowing jealousy to fester.

Learn Spanish - One language is always going to be dominant in any relationship, take full advantage of your new found love and learn Spanish. You will appreciate it when you can actually interact with her family.

Leave Your White Horse and Shining Armour at Home: Oftentimes we see a problem that can be easily fixed with a seemingly small amount of money but tread lightly. Solving every issue you see with your wallet isn’t helping to build the woman you want as a partner. Limit the gifts to reasonable items and spread them over time.

Happy Wife, Happy Life: A long running phrase but words to live by in just about every culture. I don’t think this means to bow to her every will and buy her everything in her Amazon Wish list. I think this is more about investing in your partner, building her up, being strong when she needs it and allowing her to lead where she is best suited. Continually work on each other so that you can be the best couple you can be, it’s a lifelong process. What makes her happy today is going to change and the same is true for you. Keep investing in building one another, be patient, slow to anger and you will end up with that happy wife and happy life.

If you are ready to marry a Costa Rican, here is the checklist of what you will need.