Average Pay in Costa Rica 2022

What is the average salary of a Costa Rican worker?

The average monthly income for a Costa Rican worker is 2,360,000 CRC. From CRC 597,500 up to CRC 10,500,000, employees are compensated.

The monthly salary covers expenses such as food, lodging, and transportation. Salaries might vary substantially based on a person’s line of employment. Management may make CRC 5 666 667 a month, yet an unskilled worker might make CRC 1 200 000, on average each month.

The minimum wage in Costa Rica is set at CRC 414,833 per month (before taxes). The high cost of living in the country makes it hard to make ends meet with this salary.

Salary Structure in Costa Rica

Average to High Monthly Wage

The average monthly compensation in Costa Rica is 597,000 CRC, with the highest-paid employees earning up to 10,500,000 CRC. However, the top 10% of earners make an average of 1,717,000 CRC per month. The lowest 10% of earners make an average of 260,000 CRC per month.

The Costa Rican government does not have a minimum wage law, but the National Wages Council sets minimum wages for various sectors of the economy. For instance, the minimum wage for agricultural workers is 400,000 CRC per month.

The average hourly wage in Costa Rica is 2,857 CRC. The highest-paid workers make up to 48,333 CRC hourly, while the lowest-paid workers make an average of 1,143 CRC hourly.

Salary Scale

Half of the population earns less than 2,460,000 CRC each month, while the other half earns more than 2,460,000 CRC. The median monthly wage is 2,460,000 CRC. The median pay is the figure in the center. This means that half of the workers earn more than this amount, while the other half earn less.

The top 10% of earners make an average of 8,333,333 CRC each month. The bottom 10% of earners make an average of 416,667 CRC each month.


75% of the population earns more than 1,370,000 CRC. The 25th percentile, or the bottom 25% of earners, makes an average of 910,000 CRC each month. The top 75% of earners make an average of 2,850,000 CRC each month.

The top 1% of earners make an average of 16,666,667 CRC each month. The bottom 99% of earners make an average of 1,890,000 CRC each month.

Income inequality is relatively high in Costa Rica. The GINI index, which measures income inequality, is at 0.48. This means that 48% of the total income in the country goes to the top 20% of earners.

Is there a distinction between an individual’s average and median income?

The median and average salaries have differences. The median salary is the middle value of all salaries, while the average salary is the sum of all salaries divided by the number of people. In Costa Rica, the average salary is higher than the median earnings.

In recent years, there has been an increase in the average salary in Costa Rica. In 2022, the average salary is CRC 1,496,725. The median salary is CRC 1,035,000.

There are many factors that contribute to the differences between average and median salaries. The cost of living in Costa Rica is high, and many people have to work two jobs to make ends meet. The average worker in Costa Rica works long hours, often more than 40 hours per week.

The minimum wage in Costa Rica is CRC 416,000 per month. Many people earn less than the minimum wage, which contributes to the lower average and median salaries.

The high cost of living, long work hours and low wages are some of the reasons why many people choose to leave Costa Rica. In recent years, there has been an increase in the number of people leaving Costa Rica in search of better opportunities elsewhere.

Despite the challenges, Costa Rica is still a beautiful country with a lot to offer. The average salary may not be as high as in other countries, but the cost of living is also relatively low. For many people, the quality of life in Costa Rica is worth more than a higher salary.

Comparison of Salaries in Costa Rica Based on Years of Work Experience

How does a person’s pay change over the course of their career?

A person’s salary usually increases with more work experience. The biggest jump in pay comes between 0 and 5 years of experience, where the average salary increases by CRC 71,752. After 10 years of experience, salaries continue to increase, but more slowly, at a rate of CRC 19,160 per year on average.

The average salary in Costa Rica is CRC 544,824. The average salary for someone with 0-5 years of experience is CRC 473,072. The average salary for someone with 5-10 years of experience is CRC 492,232. The average salary for someone with 10+ years of experience is CRC 563,384.

Comparison of Wages in Costa Rica Based on Level of Education

How does your degree of education influence the amount of money you make?

As you might expect, those with higher levels of education tend to earn more money than those with lower levels of education. However, the difference in earnings is not as great as you might think. For example, the average salary for someone with a high school diploma is only about 10% less than the average salary for someone with a college degree.

Of course, there are many other factors that influence how much money you make, such as your experience, the company you work for, and the sector you work in. But if we’re just looking at the influence of education level on earnings, here’s what we found:

  • High school diploma: CRC 553,427
  • Associate’s degree: CRC 644,555
  • Bachelor’s degree: CRC 738,333
  • Master’s degree: CRC 841,667
  • Doctorate: CRC 962,500

As you can see, there is a significant jump in earnings between someone with a high school diploma and someone with an associate’s degree. But after that, the increases are not as drastic. For example, someone with a bachelor’s degree only earns about 9% more than someone with an associate’s degree. And someone with a master’s degree only earns about 13% more than someone with a bachelor’s degree.

Comparative Analysis of Wages Earned by Men and Women in Costa Rica

On average, men in Costa Rica earn 6% more than women in all industries combined. In general, women are paid less than men for doing the same job. The wage gap is even larger for women of color and indigenous women.

Despite this law, the gender wage gap in Costa Rica still exists. There are many factors that contribute to the gender wage gap. For example, women are more likely to take on part-time or informal jobs, which tend to be lower-paying.

Women are also more likely to take on caregiving responsibilities, which can make it difficult for them to work full-time or advance in their careers. Additionally, women face discrimination in the workplace and are often paid less than men for doing the same job.

The gender wage gap has a significant impact on women and their families. Women who are paid less than men have less money to support themselves and their families. This can lead to financial instability and poverty.

The gender wage gap also affects economic growth. When women are paid less than men, they have less money to spend on goods and services, which can hurt the economy.

There are many ways to reduce the gender wage gap. For example, businesses can provide child care benefits or flexible work schedules to help make it easier for women to work.

Costa Rica’s Typical Annual Salary Increase Percentage

What are the average wage increases per year? How frequently do workers get an increase in their pay?

Every 17 months, Costa Rican workers may expect an average pay rise of 9%. This is according to the results of the “Remuneration Practices Survey” prepared by Mercer, which was released today.

According to the study, among the companies that grant salary increases, 67% do so every year and 33% every two years.

In terms of the amount of the salary increase, the median is 9%. This means that half of the companies surveyed grant higher increases than this percentage and half grant lower increases.

The highest salary increases were given in the technology sector (12%), followed by services (10%) and manufacturing (9%). The lowest increases were in retail (8%) and banking (also 8%).

When we compare these results with those of last year’s survey, we see that both the frequency and the number of salary increases have decreased. In the 2016 survey, 73% of companies said they granted salary increases every year and 27% every two years. The median salary increase was 10%.

The decrease in frequency may be due to the current economic situation in Costa Rica, where growth has been slowing down in recent months. The reduction in the number of salary increases may also be due to the fact that last year’s results included a greater proportion of large companies than this year’s results.

Rate of Annual Growth Expected by Industry in 2022

  • Travel – 8%
  • Energy – 5%
  • Education – 6%
  • Healthcare – 2%
  • Business and Professional Services – 5%
  • Information Technology – 3%
  • Telecommunications – 6%

The average salary in Costa Rica is expected to grow by 4% in 2022, according to the latest data from the Costa Rican government.

The industries that are expected to see the highest rate of growth are travel, energy, education, healthcare, business and professional services, information technology, and telecommunications.

The data also showed that the cost of living in Costa Rica is expected to increase by 3%in 2022. The inflation rate is expected to be 2%. The unemployment rate is expected to remain at 5%.

So, if you are planning to move to Costa Rica or are already living there, you can expect your salary to go up by 4 percent next year. And, if you are in one of the industries that are expected to grow the most, you could see an even bigger increase in your salary.

Rate of Salary Increase in Costa Rica based on Experience Level

Workers in Costa Rica that are at the junior level may receive a 3-5% salary increase and a 5-7% salary increase for those in the mid-level. Experienced professionals and executives may receive a 7-9% raise in salary. The highest increases are given to new employees that show high potential, with some receiving an offer 20% higher than their previous salary.

Costa Rica’s Economic Activity

The country’s economic activity greatly affects workers’ salaries. For instance, during an economic recession, companies cut back on costs by freezing wages or reducing employees’ hours.

On the other hand, during periods of economic growth, businesses are more likely to give raises and bonuses as they experience increased profits.


Inflation also impacts workers’ earnings since it causes the prices of goods and services to increase. When inflation is high, the purchasing power of workers’ salaries decreases, which can lead to a decrease in their standard of living.

Geographical Location

Another factor that determines salary levels is geographical location. For example, workers in urban areas generally earn more than those in rural areas due to the higher cost of living in cities.

Similarly, workers in Costa Rica’s capital, San Jose, tend to earn more than those in other parts of the country because of the city’s higher cost of living and its concentration of businesses and industries.

Rates of Bonuses and Incentive Bonuses

How frequently are bonuses given?

47% of Costa Rican employees asked indicated they didn’t get bonuses or incentives last year, while 53% said they did. Those who were eligible for bonuses reported receiving amounts that ranged from 3 percent to 6 percent of their yearly pay. Bonuses are given more often to employees who perform better or achieve their goals.

When do bonuses tend to be paid out?

In Costa Rica, bonuses are typically paid out once a year, usually during December or January. The timing of the bonus varies by company, but it’s generally given at the end of the fiscal year or during the holiday season.

What types of bonuses are popular in Costa Rica?

There are two main types of bonuses in Costa Rica: performance-based and profit-sharing.

Performance-Based Bonuses

Performance-based bonuses are awarded to employees based on their individual or team performance. For example, an employee who exceeds their sales targets for the year may receive a bonus.

Profit-sharing Bonuses

Profit-sharing bonuses are given to employees from a pool of money that the company has set aside based on its profits. For example, if a company makes $1 million in profit, it may set aside 2 percent of that profit to be distributed among employees as bonus pay.

Seasonal or End-of-Year Payouts

Some companies in Costa Rica also choose to give their employees a seasonal or end-of-year payout in addition to their regular salary. This extra payment is often given in the form of a bonus or commission and is based on the employee’s performance during that period.

As you can see, bonuses and incentive payouts are quite common in Costa Rica. If you’re looking for a job here, it’s important to inquire about these types of benefits during the interview process.

Does Costa Ricans prefer cash or non-cash bonuses?

The vast majority of Costa Ricans (94%) said they would prefer to receive their bonus in cash. Just 6% said they would prefer to receive non-cash benefits, such as extra vacation days, stock options, or merchandise.

When it comes to bonuses, Costa Ricans prefer cash over non-cash benefits. The most popular type of bonus is performance-based, followed by profit-sharing. Bonuses are typically paid out once a year, usually during December or January.

Comparison of Bonuses for Different Types of Occupation in Costa Rica

What aspects of a job make it deserving of a high base wage in addition to desirable bonuses?

The answer may depend on whom you ask, but some factors that could be taken into consideration include:

  • The level of training or experience required
  • The level of responsibility involved
  • The degree of customer interaction
  • The amount of travel required
  • The work schedule
  • The working conditions

In Costa Rica, there are important variations in the salaries offered for different types of jobs. Professions such as teaching, engineering and medicine offer some of the highest salaries, while manual labor jobs such as construction or gardening tend to offer lower salaries.

The following table provides a comparison of average monthly salaries for different types of occupation in Costa Rica, along with the bonuses typically offered for each type of job:

  • Teaching – CRC 1,698,000
  • Engineering – CRC 1,842,000
  • Medicine – CRC 2,145,000
  • Construction – CRC 538,000
  • Gardening – CRC 435,000

Comparing Costa Rica’s Bonuses Based on Seniority

Senior-level workers are compensated handsomely for their years of experience and expertise, earning an average bonus of CRC 750,000. This is nearly double the average bonus earned by junior employees (CRC 415,000).

On the other hand, bonuses are less common among entry-level workers. In fact, only 23% of survey respondents in this group reported receiving any kind of bonus at all. This number grows to 38% for mid-level workers and reaches its peak at 54% for senior-level employees.

Overall, Costa Rican workers are happy with their bonuses. In a recent survey, 66% of respondents said they were satisfied with the size of their bonus. This is slightly higher than the global average of 64%.

The Average Annual Wages of Costa Rica’s Most Popular Jobs

Advertising / Graphic Design / Events

  • Art Director – 2,390,000 CRC
  • Creative Director – 2,310,000 CRC
  • Graphic Designer – 1,410,000 CRC
  • Creatives Manager – 2,520,000 CRC


  • Certified Public Accountant – 1,560,000 CRC
  • Senior Tax Manager – 2,290,000 CRC
  • Auditor – 1,230,000 CRC

Banking / Finance / Investment

  • Investment Banker – 3,210,000 CRC
  • Banker – 1,560,000 CRC
  • Commercial Lender – 1,950,000 CRC
  • Product Manager – 2,540,000 CRC
  • Investment Analyst – 1,980,000 CRC
  • Financial Analyst – 1,630,000 CRC

Business / Consulting

  • Management Consultant – 3,010,000 CRC
  • Strategy Consultant – 2,970,000 CRC
  • Business Analyst – 1,430,000 CRC
  • Project Manager – 2,130 CRC

Human Resources

  • HR Generalist – 1,610CRC
  • Recruiter – 1,660 CRC
  • Training Specialist – 1,550 CRC
  • Compensation and Benefits Manager- 2,470 CRC


  • Physician – 2,040 CRC
  • Surgeon – 4,070 CRC
  • Anesthesiologist – 3,970 CRC
  • Psychiatrist- 2,550 CRC

Business Development

  • Director of Business Development – 3,070 CRC
  • Business Development Manager- 2,130 CRC
  • Product Manager- 2,540 CRC

Marketing / Communications / PR

  • Public Relations Manager- 1,920 CRC
  • Copywriter – 1,230 CRC
  • Social Media Specialist- 1,540 CRC

Comparison of Wages from Different Cities

San Jose workers earn about 2,510,000 CRC and 10,040 USD per month on average. This is the highest average salary in Costa Rica. Meanwhile, workers in Puntarenas earn an average salary of 1,430,000 CRC and 5,760 USD per month. This is the lowest average salary in Costa Rica.

There is a significant difference in the average salaries between these two cities. San Jose’s average salary is nearly double that of Puntarenas’. The cost of living in San Jose is also higher than in other parts of Costa Rica. For example, housing costs are about 50% more expensive in San Jose than in Puntarenas.

Hourly Rate of Pay on Average in Costa Rica

The average compensation per hour in Costa Rica is 13,600 CRC, which is expressed as an hourly rate. The average monthly salary in Costa Rica is 397,200 CRC. The average weekly salary in Costa Rica is 92,800 CRC.

Comparative Analysis of Wages in the Public and Private Sectors

In Costa Rica, workers in the public sector earn, on average and across all sectors, 6% points more than their colleagues in the private sector. This is according to data from the National Institute of Statistics and Census (INEC), for the period between September 2019 and 2020.

The average salary in the public sector was 674,183.09 CRC (US$1,206), while in the private sector it was 635,159.56 CRC (US$1,129). The figures include bonuses and other allowances paid by the employer.

The difference is mainly explained by the higher concentration of workers with tertiary education in state institutions. According to INEC, 52% of employees in the public sector have a university degree, compared to only 22% in the private sector.

Although there are more highly educated people working in the public sector, this does not necessarily mean that they are paid more for their qualifications. In fact, the average salary of a public sector worker with a university degree is only slightly higher than that of a private-sector worker with the same level of education (682,871 CRC vs. 677,370 CRC).

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