Reality Check: Why is it so hard to find quality service providers in Costa Rica?

Your Pura Vida was created to help our members deal with the day-to-day challenges of living in Costa Rica, in particular, to answer the question of “why is it so hard to find good vendors for projects I need doing?” 

Yes, working with Your Pura Vida means we vet local providers.  Yes, we give you our best choices for your needs and location based on who we have screened.  And yes, there still may be issues that occur.

It is important for you to remember that you are no longer in a country where Yelp reviews and licensing boards dictate who gets good ratings.  Here in Costa Rica things will forever be more challenging:  

  • Limited availability: Costa Rica has a smaller population compared to many other countries, and this can limit service both the number and quality of service providers available, especially in more rural areas.
  • Lack of regulation: There are few formal licensing or certification requirements for service providers and handymen in Costa Rica, which makes it difficult to assess their skills and expertise.
  • Language barrier: Many service providers and handymen in Costa Rica may not speak English fluently, which can make it challenging for expats or foreigners to communicate their needs and expectations effectively.
  • Cultural differences: Cultural differences can also play a role in finding quality service providers and handymen in Costa Rica. For example, punctuality and timeliness may not be as highly valued as in some other cultures.
  • Informal referral networks: Many service providers and handymen in Costa Rica rely on informal referral networks rather than formal advertising or online platforms, which can make it challenging for newcomers to access their services.
  • Changing priorities and abilities of providers: We have all had the experience of having a great handyman who we’ve used many times, but then they flake or just don’t do the same quality job as they once did.

This post is not written to freak you out.  We do want you, however, to fully understand and embrace your new country and its unique business practices.  We have built our service to continually vet the quality and professionalism of service providers.  When someone doesn’t do a good job of servicing our members, we seek out other providers. 

But YOU are in the driver’s seat.  We specifically give you referrals, not just. a single provider recommendation. And we work with both our members and providers to ensure that all understand expectations and potential challenges to any job. Remember that for many of the projects you need help with, the vendors are coming to your home not knowing how construction was done, nor the quality of the infrastructure.  As noted above, lack of regulation plays a great role in a myriad of issues you may encounter.  

Your Pura Vida helps you navigate these challenges, but we will also continually give you reality from our and our member’s experiences.  We cannot make all challenges go away, but we are here to help you thrive in Costa Rica.

We can’t wait to connect with you and see what needs you may have.

And as always, Pura Vida!