If you’re a single woman thinking about dating a Costa Rican man, then you’ve come to the right place. If you’ve visited beautiful Costa Rica and spent even a little time there, then you probably already know a few things about the Ticos.
But even if you haven’t, you’ll soon learn all there is to know about dating a Costa Rican man. Keep reading to find out what these charming gentlemen are like, what cultural differences you can expect, where you can meet a dreamy Costa Rican man, and how to impress them.
Dating a Costa Rican Man
When you visit Costa Rica or meet someone from this Central American country, you’ll see that the people are of mixed descent. Costa Ricans, also sometimes referred to as Ticos, consider themselves a multiethnic society with people ranging from Spain to Asia to Europe.
As most Costa Ricans have a Spanish ancestral lineage, residents predominantly speak Spanish, but English is widely used since the country draws in tourists from all over the world.
There is no cookie-cutter Costa Rican man, but a majority are light-skinned and slightly tanned due to their mix of Hispanic and European immigrant origins.
Costa Rican men may also refer to each other as Gordo, Gordito, and Cosito. Gordo means “fat,” Gordito means “little fatty,” and Cosito means “little thing.” These are all endearing terms, and you shouldn’t take offense if you hear a Costa Rican man-call anyone these names.
In general, the Costa Rican man is a passionate, friendly, warm gentleman. The people of Costa Rica are brought up to love and take care of family and friends and respect strangers. After all, friends were strangers at one point.
Cultural Customs and Behaviors
You can’t think about dating a Costa Rican man without considering cultural differences and how they affect a person’s behaviors and attitudes. A country’s customs and values shape people’s personalities, so it’s worth mentioning some of the most important cultural aspects a Costa Rican man tends to embrace.
Family is Everything
Unlike many North Americans who long for complete independence at the age of 18, Costa Ricans value family above most everything. Family members and society teach them to respect their elders and take care of their family for as long as needed.
Their strong attachment to family means your Costa Rican cutie may want you to meet his close and extended relatives sooner rather than later. This arrangement isn’t ideal for everyone, especially if you aren’t keen on “Mama’s boys.”
To date a Costa Rican man, you must understand and accept his familial bonds. Also, know that meeting his family doesn’t hold the same weight as it would if you were meeting a North American man’s family.
In the United States, men and women typically only introduce their partners to close family members once they’re serious about the relationship.
On the other hand, because Costa Rican families are so close and prevalent in a person’s life, meeting your partner’s parents doesn’t have the same meaning or hold such a serious weight.
You can also rest assured that if you marry a Tico, he and his family will treat you as one of their own. You will always have a family in Costa Rica.
Avoiding Confrontation and Saving Face
Part of Costa Rican culture is about saving face. A Costa Rican man may not be as direct with someone in order to avoid offense or embarrassment. If they speak with you and feel they might offend you or embarrass themselves, they will likely avoid the conversation or give a vague answer.
Saving face is not meant to mislead anyone, and it’s certainly not about dishonesty. Culturally, it’s a way to soften feelings, so to speak.
For example, if you ask a Costa Rican man out for a date, but he’s not that interested, he probably won’t be so direct as to say, “Thanks, but no thanks.” Instead, your object of interest may say something like, “Maybe we can get together,” or “I’ll let you know.”
Another example is that they may give you the wrong directions instead of telling you they don’t know the way. If you ask a question, but they don’t know the answer or don’t want to disappoint you, they might tell you what they think you want to hear.
Basically, if the answer to something is negative or could cause embarrassment/offense, it’s best to save face with subtleties and vague responses.
Chivalry is not Dead
If you wondered where all the gentlemen disappeared to, you might be interested in dating a Costa Rican man.
Costa Rican men love playing the knight in shining armor by helping you carry whatever you have in your hands, opening doors for you, or making sure you walk on the inner side of the sidewalk to avoid traffic.
Flirting and PDA is Normal
Costa Rican men can be flirtatious with other women, but this is not considered cheating in their culture. If a Tico calls another woman “amor,” for instance, it is only a sign of endearment and shouldn’t be taken seriously.
If you’re dating a Costa Rican man, you may notice him flirting or teasing other women, but it’s usually only without intention, and you shouldn’t be concerned. These men are generally loyal to their girlfriends and only see flirting as a standard, innocent action.
Public displays of affection (PDA) are also quite normal in Costa Rica. If you’re in the area and you walk around town, you may come across many couples kissing, touching, and staring longingly into each other’s eyes.
An article in The Tico Times takes note of just how amorous Costa Rica is. People throw love and affection around like confetti. You’ll find words of endearment and kisses exchanged in the office place, and fond expressions flow back and forth between strangers, co-workers, friends, and neighbors.
Dating a Costa Rican man means you’ll need to get comfortable with affectionate gestures, or at the very least, let him know what you feel is appropriate in public.
Passionate, but Jealous
A Costa Rican man will lavish you with love and romance. They are gentlemen, as you read before, and care deeply for family and community. When they fall in love, they fall hard and become protective.
Also, remember that Ticos are flirtatious but rarely have intentions outside of harmless charming. However, although the Costa Rican man can innocently flirt, they are not always so keen to have their girlfriends do the same.
As his girlfriend, you’re expected to withhold from flirting or even talking to the opposite sex. This may seem dramatic, and it’s not true with every Tico, but it’s typical behavior. It’s not certain why Costa Rican men are possessive. Some say it’s because there’s a high infidelity rate within the society, so people are naturally skeptical.
If you love lots of attention, then dating a Costa Rican man will be no problem for you. Yes, they will dote on you, call or text you frequently, and want to spend tons of time with you. However, if they see you talking with another man, can’t get in touch with you, or don’t know where you are, you’ll see another side of the charming Costa Rican.
After a few dates, your new beau may want to know exactly where you are, who you’re with, and what you’re doing throughout the day. If your relationship is official, you can avoid arguments by not talking to or flirting with other men.
It’s not unheard of for a Costa Rican man to put a tracking device on his girlfriend or wife’s car so that he knows where she is and for how long.
If you’re prepared to show affection, spend lots of time with your significant other, and cut ties with other men, you’re ready to date a Costa Rican man.
Where to Meet Costa Rican Men
Online dating is a relatively new concept in Costa Rica, and most people tend to meet potential dates at the beach, in bars, or when they are out and about. Costa Ricans like meeting people face-to-face, but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a Costa Rican man online.
Of course, if you have a chance to visit the country, you should take advantage of public spaces, if not only to see what Costa Rica has to offer (besides good looking men!).
As a foreigner, you will likely stand out, and meeting eligible bachelors won’t be too much of a problem. You might find Costa Rican men approaching you without doing anything. You could be sitting on a park bench, enjoying the moment, and next thing you know, a Tico is asking your name and where you’re from.
If you’re not able to visit the country or would like to meet potential partners through dating sites, you’re in luck. Although many Costa Ricans meet romantic partners through friends, work, organizations, and the like, more and more singles are making the transition to online dating, especially in cities like San Jose.
What once used to be stigmatized and scary is now acceptable and commonplace, for the most part. You can meet hundreds of Costa Rican men through sites like Latin American Cupid.
Although Latin American Cupid is designed for all of Latin America, you can easily find men in Costa Rica by using the search filters.
You may come across fake profiles during your online dating search, but these are usually easy to spot. Since dating sites are relatively new to Costa Rica, people have not perfected the art of creating legitimate-looking profiles.
Read each member profile carefully before taking the next step. The fake ones are typically obvious because they won’t have much written on them or have many photos posted.
- Plenty of Fish
Tinder is widely known as a hookup dating app and generally caters to people looking for one-night-stands or no strings attached relationships. That doesn’t mean you can’t find an eligible Costa Rican man to date using Tinder. Just keep in mind that most Tinder users aren’t looking for long-term relationships.
Badoo is another international dating site where you can find Costa Rican men. Alongside Latin America Cupid, Badoo is probably one of the more popular websites to use for dating a Costa Rican man. There are over 300 million users on Badoo, many of which are located in South and Central America.
How to Capture and Keep His Heart
The best way to capture any man’s eye is to be confident and yourself, but there are other things you can do to help draw in a Costa Rican man’s affection.
It may seem obvious, but sometimes the most simple things are the most powerful. Costa Rican men love a woman with sex appeal and confidence.
To impress a Tico, dress up in something you feel beautiful wearing, do your hair and makeup, spritz on your favorite perfume, and watch as the men make their way to you.
That being said, still dress respectively, especially if you’re visiting small villages or local families. If you overly dress to impress or wear skimpy outfits, you’ll get noticed, but not in a good way.
Once you have someone by your side, flirt by smiling, making eye contact, playing with your hair, and positioning your legs so that they point towards him. All of these subtle actions will make a big difference.
As the national language of Costa Rica, it benefits you to learn some Spanish before visiting the country or dating a Costa Rican man. Learning basic words and phrases will show you’re serious about dating a Tico, learning the culture, and embracing the Costa Rican language. Even if your relationship doesn’t work out in the end, you’ll have learned a new language!
If you haven’t already noticed, Latin men love dancing, and they’ve got the skills to prove it! Salsa, cumbia, and merengue are all popular dances within the Costa Rican community. If you don’t already know how to dance, ask your Costa Rican sweetheart to teach you, and you’re sure to make an impression.
Embrace His Family
As you read earlier, Costa Rican families have strong bonds, and the connection is an essential part of life. Costa Rican men respect their family’s opinions, especially their mothers.
Costa Rican mothers do everything for their sons as they raise them. The boys grow into men who rarely know how to cook or clean, and they are not expected to do so. That’s the wife’s job!
For many North American women, this cultural difference is hard to swallow, especially with most Western women’s independent mindset. But if you want to date a Costa Rican man, you need to accept the family system. Understand that your potential partner will likely have a strong attachment to his mother and may value her opinion over yours.
When you finally meet his family, show respect by accepting food and drinks and speaking a little bit of the Spanish you’ve learned.
Also, don’t be surprised if you meet more than just his parents. A Costa Rican home may house parents, grandparents, siblings, and kids. If not, their homes are probably located nearby. Family is never too far away in Costa Rica.
Understand Gender Roles
Costa Rican men do not grow up learning the ways of the home: cooking, washing clothes, cleaning the house, etc. Mothers, sisters, aunts, and female relatives, in general, are expected to take on these traditional roles.
Although modern Costa Rican women have more rights and flexibility regarding gender roles, the men still rely on them to take care of the children, prepare food, and handle household duties like cleaning and laundry.
If you are a Western woman considering dating a Costa Rican man, you’ll need to understand this cultural difference and perhaps even take on traditional gender roles while juggling work and education.
Final Thoughts on Dating Costa Rican Man
Dating a Costa Rican man has its pros and cons, just as dating any person from any country comes with benefits and drawbacks. Understanding how a person grows up and their cultural and societal customs is the first step to building a healthy and loving relationship.
One thing to keep in mind is that dating isn’t as formal in Costa Rica. There is a more casual approach to going out, and love and lust are practically woven into the social fabric. This mindset can take some of the stress out of dating, but also cause confusion if you aren’t prepared.
Fortunately, if you’ve read through this article, then you’ve learned many essential things about dating in Costa Rica, the cultural differences, etiquette practices, and what the typical Costa Rican man is like.
This isn’t to say that every Costa Rican is alike or fits a stereotypical mold, but what you’ve learned in this blog post will give you a general idea of how relationships work in Costa Rica and what you can expect in general.
Keep these points in mind, and you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a new relationship with a Costa Rican man!