We review vendors based on rigorous testing and research but also take into account your feedback and our affiliate commission with providers. Some providers are owned by our parent company.
Learn more
vpnMentor was established in 2014 to review VPN services and cover privacy-related stories. Today, our team of hundreds of cybersecurity researchers, writers, and editors continues to help readers fight for their online freedom in partnership with Kape Technologies PLC, which also owns the following products: ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, and Private Internet Access which may be ranked and reviewed on this website. The reviews published on vpnMentor are believed to be accurate as of the date of each article, and written according to our strict reviewing standards that prioritize professional and honest examination of the reviewer, taking into account the technical capabilities and qualities of the product together with its commercial value for users. The rankings and reviews we publish may also take into consideration the common ownership mentioned above, and affiliate commissions we earn for purchases through links on our website. We do not review all VPN providers and information is believed to be accurate as of the date of each article.
Advertising Disclosure

vpnMentor was established in 2014 to review VPN services and cover privacy-related stories. Today, our team of hundreds of cybersecurity researchers, writers, and editors continues to help readers fight for their online freedom in partnership with Kape Technologies PLC, which also owns the following products: ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, and Private Internet Access which may be ranked and reviewed on this website. The reviews published on vpnMentor are believed to be accurate as of the date of each article, and written according to our strict reviewing standards that prioritize professional and honest examination of the reviewer, taking into account the technical capabilities and qualities of the product together with its commercial value for users. The rankings and reviews we publish may also take into consideration the common ownership mentioned above, and affiliate commissions we earn for purchases through links on our website. We do not review all VPN providers and information is believed to be accurate as of the date of each article.

5 Best VPNs for Costa Rica in 2024 for Browsing and Security

Hendrik Human Updated on 28th February 2024 Fact-checked by Eric Raue Cybersecurity Researcher

Finding a VPN for Costa Rica that doesn’t sacrifice speed or security can be challenging. Many services don’t have servers within the country itself, so speeds are slow and you can lose access to some local sites. Others aren’t secure enough to keep you safe.

After my global team and I tested 50+ options, I found the best VPNs to keep your online activities private without noticeable delays in Costa Rica. Plus, they have servers worldwide to access important accounts (like your banking apps) when traveling abroad.

My top recommendation for Costa Rica is ExpressVPN. It provides high-speed servers in and outside Costa Rica for browsing without delays. Plus, thanks to its military-grade encryption and 30-day money-back guarantee, you can try it with peace of mind. Editors' Note: Expressvpn and this site are in the same ownership group.

Get ExpressVPN for Costa Rica >>

Short on Time? Here Are the Best VPNs for Costa Rica in 2024

  • Editor's Choice
    ExpressVPN
    ExpressVPN
    Highest speeds for streaming local shows in UHD from Costa Rica, plus it’s extremely secure.
    70% of our readers choose ExpressVPN
  • CyberGhost VPN
    CyberGhost
    Smart Rules let you automate your connection to protect your online activities in Costa Rica.
  • Private Internet Access
    PIA
    Customizable settings so you can optimize your connection for speed or security.
  • NordVPN
    NordVPN
    Threat Protection safeguards against online and offline dangers.
  • Surfshark
    Surfshark
    No limit on devices for household-wide protection.
Important. Although you could theoretically use a VPN to access Costa Rican channels from abroad, this is against copyright laws. Our team stands firmly against copyright infringement in any form. The VPN solutions we present here do not monitor your activity. Therefore, you must ensure to adhere to all laws and regulations while using them.

Editors' Note: Intego, Private Internet Access, CyberGhost and Expressvpn are owned by Kape Technologies, our parent company.

Best VPNs for Costa Rica — Full Analysis (Updated 2024)

1. ExpressVPN — Fastest Speeds for Streaming Local Shows in Buffer-Free HD From Costa Rica

Best Feature Proprietary Lightway security protocol is faster than traditional VPN options
Server Network 3,000 servers in 105 countries, with one in Costa Rica
Works With Netflix, Canal 7, Amazon Prime Video, Repretel, Disney+, Canal 13, and more
Security 256-bit AES military-grade encryption and a kill switch
Editors' Note: Expressvpn and this site are in the same ownership group.

ExpressVPN’s fast speeds made it consistently capable of streaming local sites in HD. While in Costa Rica, I tested ExpressVPN using the Smart Location feature, and my speed only dropped by 4%. At 111 Mbps, compared to my baseline of 115 Mbps, I didn’t notice a difference while watching live shows on Repretel.

Screenshot of streaming Canal 6 on Repretel within Costa Rica while connected to ExpressVPN's Costa Rica server.The Smart Location feature automatically uses the fastest server for local streaming

The TrustedServer feature ensures your browsing activities in Costa Rica are never exposed. It frequently reboots its RAM-only servers, wiping all data. ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands, a territory without intelligence-sharing agreements. Its no-logs policy was verified by third parties like KPMG and Cure53. My DNS, IP, and WebRTC tests found no leaks.

I found that its apps are intuitive, so there’s no real learning curve. The design is minimalistic, with a large “Connect” button on the home screen to get a secure connection in Costa Rica right away. Plus, it looks almost the same on all devices, so you don’t have to learn how each interface works from scratch when you switch from mobile to desktop.

The higher price was the only small issue I had. However, ExpressVPN frequently offers deals. paid only $6.67/month for its 15-month plan. There's also a 30-day money-back guarantee you can redeem using 24/7 live chat. This makes it risk-free to test.

Useful Features

  • Versatile servers. ExpressVPN servers, including those in Costa Rica, are suitable for all activities. You don’t have to look for a specialized server when you want to torrent, securely stream local shows, game, or just browse the internet safely.
  • Obfuscation. The VPN uses obfuscated servers. This allows you to use it on restricted WiFi networks, like those in airports and hotels in Costa Rica.
  • 24/7 live chat support. The customer support at ExpressVPN had some of the quickest replies of any I’ve tested. I’ve never waited more than 2-3 minutes using live chat, and they always had thorough answers to my questions about using a VPN in Costa Rica.
  • Threat Manager. This handy feature blocks trackers.
Editors' Note: Intego, Private Internet Access, CyberGhost and Expressvpn are owned by Kape Technologies, our parent company.
ExpressVPN Offer June 2024: For a limited time only, you can get an ExpressVPN subscription for up to 49% off! Don't miss out!

2. CyberGhost — Smart Rules to Protect Your Devices Seamlessly on Costa Rica’s Public WiFi

Best Feature Simple apps, so customization is easy even for beginners
Server Network 11,690 servers in 100 countries, including 24 in Costa Rica
Works With Netflix, Canal 7, Amazon Prime Video, Repretel, Disney+, Canal 13, and more
Security Powerful VPN protocols and leak protection
Editors' Note: CyberGhost VPN and this site are in the same ownership group.

CyberGhost can automatically turn on before your device uses certain networks, keeping your devices safe when you travel in Costa Rica. I set the Smart Rules to connect before using any new WiFi network, preventing unsafe connections while I was sightseeing. Plus, AES 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and leak protection prevent data exposure.

The VPN’s most distant servers had the least consistent speeds on this list, with drops sometimes up to 20%. However, in Costa Rica, I got speeds of 112 Mbps while testing the nearby server in San Jose. It was only a few percentage points slower than my regular 117 Mbps connection.

Screenshot of the CyberGhost app with the Smart rules panel open.You can make different Smart Rules for any app or network

Based in Romania, I felt safe entrusting my online activity in Costa Rica to CyberGhost. It’s one of the most privacy-friendly countries and has no major role in global intelligence sharing. Deloitte has verified its no-logs policy and releases frequent transparency reports about data requests it receives. Plus, its OpenVPN protocol is secure and open sourced.

CyberGhost’s 2-year plan gives you the most savings at only $2.03/month. Long-term options also have an extended 45-day money-back guarantee. You can use CyberGhost risk-free in Costa Rica during its refund period, which I verified by getting a refund via 24/7 chat support. Once I found the live chat option, I got my refund approved in a few minutes.

Useful Features

  • Block content. This feature blocks ads, trackers, and malware. It improved my browsing experience in Costa Rica by eliminating ads and helping me stay off dodgy websites.
  • Optimized servers. CyberGhost offers optimized servers for specific activities. For example, it has a P2P server in Costa Rica for fast and secure torrenting.
  • Privacy Guard. This tool minimizes your digital footprint. It can block many background apps from harvesting your data.
  • Use a random port to connect. This feature is handy in Costa Rica for using the VPN despite unfair network restrictions. By choosing a port randomly, the VPN can work even on WiFi hotspots with built-in limitations.
Editors' Note: Intego, Private Internet Access, CyberGhost and Expressvpn are owned by Kape Technologies, our parent company.
June 2024 Deal: CyberGhost is currently offering 84% off its most popular plan! Take advantage of this offer now and save more on your CyberGhost subscription.

3. Private Internet Access — Balance Security and Speed for Different Online Activities in Costa Rica

Best Feature App explains all of the settings and options clearly so you don’t need expert knowledge
Server Network Massive fleet of 29,650 servers in 91 countries, including Costa Rica
Works With Netflix, Canal 7, Amazon Prime Video, Repretel, Disney+, Canal 13, and more
Security Advanced kill switch prevents all non-VPN traffic, even if the VPN is off
Editors' Note: Private Internet Access and this site are in the same ownership group.

PIA allows you to set up the VPN to emphasize speeds or security according to your needs. To use my online bank from Costa Rica, I use the super-secure OpenVPN and 256-bit encryption. For faster connections, I use 128-bit encryption or the WireGuard protocol. Plus, you can rearrange the desktop app for quick access to your favorite servers.

Its extensive network provides fast and reliable connections in Costa Rica and abroad. The servers weren't overcrowded during my tests while in San Jose. I got speeds of 115 Mbps testing PIA’s Costa Rica server — just a 5% drop from when I tested my baseline speed of 121 Mbps.

Screenshot of PIA's app with its Protocols settings open.You can set the MTU packet size to small for better reliability on slower networks

If you’re new to VPNs, PIA’s interface can seem overwhelming. However, its default settings work great for most activities, so you don’t have to mess with them unless you want to. Plus, if you need help, I found its 24/7 live chat was always available within a few minutes. They were always helpful and quick in answering my questions.

I found that PIA's long-term plan saves you 83%. I got a 3-year subscription for just $2.03/month, plus 4 months of free service. You can also use its 30-day money-back guarantee to test PIA for Costa Rica and make sure you like it.

Useful Features

  • MACE blocker. This tool effectively blocks ads, trackers, and malware, providing a noticeably cleaner web browsing experience in Costa Rica. Filtering unwanted content improves loading times and even removes annoying ads on streaming platforms like YouTube.
  • Connection Automation. These settings allow you to set custom rules for automatic connection based on specific triggers. You can use this in Costa Rica to ensure you're always protected when using unfamiliar public WiFi networks.
  • Port forwarding. PIA is one of the few VPNs that support port forwarding. Whether in Costa Rica or elsewhere, this may improve download speeds, particularly for P2P activities like torrenting.
Editors' Note: Intego, Private Internet Access, CyberGhost and Expressvpn are owned by Kape Technologies, our parent company.
June 2024 Update: PIA doesn't usually have deals or discounts (it's already so affordable), but right now you can get a new subscription for a crazy 83% off!

4. NordVPN — Threat Protection Safeguards You From Online Dangers in Costa Rica

Best Feature Additional security features to keep you safe on your travels
Server Network 6,420 servers in 111 countries, with servers in Costa Rica
Works With Netflix, Canal 7, Amazon Prime Video, Repretel, Disney+, Canal 13, and more
Security Double VPN and obfuscated servers for extra online anonymity

NordVPN’s Threat Protection blocks domains associated with ads, trackers, and malware. File protection prevents malicious downloads, while Vulnerability Detection scans your device for at-risk apps. This adds an extra layer of online security while you’re in Costa Rica.

Screenshot of NordVPN's Threat protection with additional options under Web protection.Under “Excluded domains” you can add websites that you don’t need protected

I got high speeds above 111 Mbps, which is fast enough for most activities. While in San Jose, my speeds dropped by only 3% when testing NordVPN’s Quick Connect. The VPN connected in 5 seconds and I could securely stream on Repretel with no quality drops.

One slight concern I have is that NordVPN’s privacy policy says that it could cooperate with official data requests from governments. However, I’m not too worried since it also states that its no-logs policy doesn’t collect your online activities or data that can be used to identify you. Plus, bonuses like Onion Over VPN let you add extra security to your connection.

NordVPN offers significant discounts for long-term subscribers up to 72%. I found a cost-effective plan for $6.39/month. Plus, its 30-day money-back guarantee means you can try it risk-free. You just have to cancel your subscription in the dashboard and then request a refund by contacting a live chat agent.

Useful Features

  • Based in Panama. NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, a country known for its robust privacy laws. If you’re Costa Rica, this means your data is away from the prying eyes of surveillance agencies.
  • NordLynx. This is NordVPN’s custom protocol based on WireGuard. It’s optimized for even greater speed without compromising security in Costa Rica.
  • Data protection. Integrated DNS and IP data leak prevention shield your online activities in Costa Rica. I tested for any potential IP leaks and couldn’t find any.

5. Surfshark — Unlimited Devices to Secure All Your Platforms in Costa Rica

Best Feature Apps for most devices means that everyone can share the VPN your household
Server Network 3,200 servers across 100 countries with a location in San Jose
Works With Netflix, Canal 7, Amazon Prime Video, Repretel, Disney+, Canal 13, and more
Security CleanWeb blocks ads, trackers, and malware for safer browsing

Surfshark has no cap on simultaneous connections, so you never have to worry about interruptions in Costa Rica from maxing out your logins. It also won’t slow down from lots of users at once. While testing Surfshark in Costa Rica on 10 platforms, I had consistently high speeds. At 112 Mbps, it was around 3% slower than my baseline of 116 Mbps using the San Jose server.

Screenshot of Surfshark's in-app speed test results for countries near Costa Rica.You can also filter speed test results by region or server type.

It also has Camouflage mode to disguise the VPN as regular traffic, allowing you to use it on limited networks, like some shared WiFi hotspots. These often have VPN blockers that don’t let you use essential web services like your online bank.

One downside is that Surfshark is based in the Netherlands, part of the 9 Eyes Alliance. However, I reached out to ask about it via 24/7 live chat. The support agent told me its zero-logs policy was audited by Deloitte, so I’m confident they don’t collect your data.

You can sign up for as little as $2.19/month. Its long-term plan offers the best value for money. And, with Surfshark’s money-back guarantee, you can test all it risk-free for 30 days.

Useful Feature

  • Multi-Hop. Use this to use a server in Costa Rica and another location (or any combination) and add an extra layer of security and privacy while you’re connected.
  • Rotating IP. Surfshark changes your IP address roughly every five minutes without changing your location. This reduces the likelihood of being tracked or monitored online in Costa Rica without losing access to local sites.
  • Bypasser. This split tunneling feature lets you specify which apps use the VPN and which don’t. In Costa Rica, you can browse local sites without the VPN while securely accessing your online banking app with a different country's IP.
Editors' Note: Intego, Private Internet Access, CyberGhost and Expressvpn are owned by Kape Technologies, our parent company.

Quick Guide: How to Set Up a VPN for Costa Rica in 3 Easy Steps

  1. Download a VPN. With high-speed servers in Costa Rica for HD streaming on local channels, I recommend ExpressVPN. You can try it for yourself for 30 days without financial risk.
  2. Connect to a Costa Rica server. This will give you a secure Costa Rican IP to secure your connection when you’re in the country.
  3. Start browsing. You can now securely stream Repretel or Netflix from Costa Rica.

Editors' Note: Expressvpn and this site are in the same ownership group.

Tips on Choosing the Best VPN for Costa Rica

The shortlisted VPNs can secure your online activity in Costa Rica while providing fast torrenting, streaming, or gaming speeds. But if you want to do your own tests, you can use this checklist:

  • Global server network. Choose a VPN with a wide range of servers worldwide to access the websites and services you need (like your online bank) while in Costa Rica.
  • Local servers. In Costa Rica, you need reliable servers in the country to securely use sites and apps. You can find server listings on a VPN’s site.
  • Fast speeds. For seamlessly using social media and other apps, fast speeds are essential. You can test speeds online during a VPN’s trial period and look for an average of 25 Mbps or higher.
  • Strong security. Look for AES 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy to protect your data.
  • Device support. Find VPNs with user-friendly apps for all your devices. Ensure the VPN’s website has setup guides for devices that don’t support VPNs natively.
  • Customer support. Prompt and knowledgeable support can help you quickly solve any issues using a VPN in Costa Rica. Look for live chat support and 24/7 availability.
  • Value for money. On top of security features and high-quality apps, choose a VPN with unlimited bandwidth and enough simultaneous connections for your needs.
  • Trustworthy money-back guarantee. A VPN can claim to cover all the previous points, but then it isn’t reliable. Read the refund policy carefully before you subscribe.

FAQs on Using a VPN for Costa Rica

Are VPNs legal in Costa Rica?

Yes, there are no laws against VPNs in Costa Rica. In fact, it’s a good idea to use a VPN to protect your data against snoops and hackers.

Just remember that using a VPN for illegal activity, including copyright infringement, is still against the law and is never condoned by myself or my team. Using a VPN to stream content not allowed in your region may also go against your streaming provider’s terms and conditions, so always check the latest rules and regulations to stay on the right side of the law.

Why do I need a VPN for Costa Rica?

A VPN can safeguard your online activities in Costa Rica. It encrypts your data so that it’s hard for snoops to intercept, and hides your real IP to protect your online privacy. Some also offer additional security, like WiFi protection and malicious domain blocking. I’ve shortlisted all of my top VPNs for offering robust security measures and trustworthy privacy policies.

A VPN can also help you avoid restrictions on WiFi networks at places like Costa Rican airports or hotels. Plus, some essential services like online banks block you from other countries to prevent fraud. If you’re traveling to Costa Rica this lets you access your online banking apps and other important location-based services from home.

Which is the best VPN for iPhone in Costa Rica?

ExpressVPN is an excellent choice for iPhone users planning to use a VPN in Costa Rica. Its user-friendly mobile apps make it a convenient option if you’re on the go. Plus, you get the same protection and privacy that’s offered by its desktop apps. However, all the VPNs here offer superb one-click-install apps for iPhone that are available for download from the App Store.

Can I use a free VPN for Costa Rica?

You can, but it's not recommended. Most free VPNs don’t even have servers in Costa Rica, so you may be unable to use them for local sites and services. Many of their IPs are also blocklisted, so they don’t work with local Costa Rican platforms. Using a premium VPN with a money-back guarantee is much safer.

Free VPNs don’t have the same advanced security features as paid VPNs, and most sell your data to third parties to make money. What’s more, with smaller and less advanced server networks, they tend to suffer from overcrowding and slow speeds.

What Costa Rican TV can I watch using a VPN?

A VPN lets you securely watch various Costa Rican TV channels and shows from within the country. This includes popular options like La Casa de las Flores, En la Oscuridad, Yo soy Betty la Fea, and channels such as Canal 13, Canal 7, and Extra TV 42. All the VPNs here work with local Costa Rican streaming services from within the country.

Many streaming platforms prevent viewers in other countries from watching their content due to broadcasting restrictions. You could, theoretically, use a VPN to get a Costa Rica IP and stream these services abroad. However, that goes against copyright law and breaks the platforms’ T&Cs. The vpnMentor team doesn’t condone using a VPN to break rules.

Will a Costa Rica VPN slow my internet down?

A VPN might slow down your internet connection, but with a solid provider the impact is usually minimal. It always takes some extra time to encrypt your traffic and route it through the VPN server. However, my top VPN picks are fast enough that you’ll barely notice any slowdown. You’ll be able to stream, torrent, or play online games pretty much as expected.

Get the Best VPN for Costa Rica

Whether you’re traveling to or from Costa Rica, you can never take your online security too seriously. Whether you like to securely stream local channels, game, or torrent, all these services offer top-notch protection against various online threats with fast connections.

ExpressVPN came out on top in my tests. Its consistently high speeds gave me an excellent streaming experience watching Costa Rican TV within the country. Its commitment to privacy also gave me peace of mind using public WiFi and hotel networks in Costa Rica. There’s also a money-back guarantee, you can try ExpressVPN for yourself without risk.

To summarize, these are the best VPNs for Costa Rica...

Rank
Provider
Our Score
Discount
Visit Website
1
medal
9.9 /10
9.9 Our Score
Save 49%!
2
9.7 /10
9.7 Our Score
Save 84%!
3
9.5 /10
9.5 Our Score
Save 83%!
4
9.4 /10
9.4 Our Score
Save 72%!
5
9.3 /10
9.3 Our Score
Save 86%!
Privacy Alert!

Your data is exposed to the websites you visit!

Your IP Address:

Your Location:

Your Internet Provider:

The information above can be used to track you, target you for ads, and monitor what you do online.

VPNs can help you hide this information from websites so that you are protected at all times. We recommend ExpressVPN — the #1 VPN out of over 350 providers we've tested. It has military-grade encryption and privacy features that will ensure your digital security, plus — it's currently offering 49% off.

Visit ExpressVPN

We review vendors based on rigorous testing and research but also take into account your feedback and our affiliate commission with providers. Some providers are owned by our parent company.
Learn more
vpnMentor was established in 2014 to review VPN services and cover privacy-related stories. Today, our team of hundreds of cybersecurity researchers, writers, and editors continues to help readers fight for their online freedom in partnership with Kape Technologies PLC, which also owns the following products: ExpressVPN, CyberGhost, and Private Internet Access which may be ranked and reviewed on this website. The reviews published on vpnMentor are believed to be accurate as of the date of each article, and written according to our strict reviewing standards that prioritize professional and honest examination of the reviewer, taking into account the technical capabilities and qualities of the product together with its commercial value for users. The rankings and reviews we publish may also take into consideration the common ownership mentioned above, and affiliate commissions we earn for purchases through links on our website. We do not review all VPN providers and information is believed to be accurate as of the date of each article.

About the Author

Hendrik is a writer at vpnMentor, specializing in VPN comparisons and user guides. With 5+ years of experience as a tech and cybersecurity writer, plus a background in corporate IT, he brings a variety of perspectives to test VPN services and analyze how they address the needs of different users.

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