Costa Rica Internet Usage Facts and Figures

September 30, 2010 at 6:59 pm 2 comments

Source: Tico Times

By Adam Williams
Tico Times Staff |
A recent study conducted by Internet provider Radiográfica Costarricense S.A. (RACSA) and market research firm CID Gallup revealed that 53 percent of Costa Ricans (2.4 million people) actively use the Internet. This percentage has increased each year since 2004, when an estimated 20 percent of Ticos used the Internet. In 2009, RACSA and CID Gallup found that 45 percent of Costa Ricans had online access.

The study also discovered that 52 percent of Costa Rican homes have a computer, up from 46 percent in 2009. Of the estimated 648,000 computerized homes, 367,000 had Internet access. The study also found that Ticos’ average Internet visit is three hours, and the average user age 29 years.

The most common uses for the Internet were e-mail, online searches, research, chatting and social networking, while use of the Internet by Costa Ricans for work, music, videos, bank transactions and online purchases grew considerably in the past year.

According to a study by the Education Ministry, of Costa Rica’s 9,246 educational institutions, 2,369 (25.6 percent) had Internet access as of Jan. 1, 2010. The ministry also reported that 133 schools were in the process of having an Internet connection installed, and that a feasibility study for potential Internet installation was being conducted for 2,077 other schools.

According to the 2009-2010 World Economic Forum’s Global Information Technology Report, Costa Rica is ranked 49th among the world’s nations in terms of the percentage of its citizens who use the Internet, up seven spots from the previous year. Costa Rica also exports the ninth largest amount of high-technology products. Most of these exports are Intel Pentium computer processors manufactured here.


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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Costa Rica Facts - International Living  |  July 2, 2012 at 5:01 am

    Costa Ricans really are wired. Many of my Tico friends are online just as much as folks I know back in the States. Facebook has certainly taken hold. And with cheap smartphone data plans, many are using mobile Internet and email too. One quick tip for travelers and expats – data plans are available without contract. You just need to buy a smartphone here or bring a phone from the States that you’ve unlocked. Then buy a SIM card that allows for data – ask the people in the cell phone store. You can activate it over the phone with an English-speaking representative.

    • 2. Costa Rica Nick  |  July 4, 2012 at 7:34 pm

      An easy way to get wired (or connected wirelessly more accurately) in Costa Rica is to buy a phone in San Jose’s Juan Santamaria airport (or any Kolbi/ICE, Claro or Movistar office) for around $30 you get a phone that you get to keep and over 100 minutes of international talk time.

      I have purchased several unlocked phones on and brought them down with me and purchased a prepaid GSM chip.


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