Costa RicaCosta Rica

Cosmetic Surgery in Costa Rica

Last year, approximately 36,000 medical tourists chose Costa Rica for procedures ranging from plastic surgery to cosmetic dental procedures. Affordable rates and high quality care are the main attractions, but Costa Rica also offers English-speaking medical staff -- many with U.S. training, luxury recovery centers, and a rich variety of sightseeing excursions to enhance a medical vacation package.

On average, plastic surgery in Costa Rica costs two-thirds less than the same procedure in the United States or Canada.  In fact, cosmetic surgery is so affordable that the total cost of a medical vacation in Costa Rica including airfare, accommodations and sightseeing is often far less than the procedure alone would cost in North America.

The Central Valley – the region surrounding San Jose, Heredia, and Alajuela – is currently the medical tourism hub of Costa Rica. The area's three major private hospitals are CIMA San Jose, Clinica Biblica, and Clinica Catolica; several smaller hospitals and clinics also perform cosmetic procedures. In northwestern Costa Rica, the JCI-accredited Hospital Clinica Biblica operates a $40-million Guanacaste branch, and the Hospital San Rafael Arcangel is currently designing a wing dedicated exclusively to medical tourism. Additionally, a $125 million Guanacaste branch of CIMA Hospital is set for inauguration in early 2013. All facilities have English-speaking medical staff, and many surgeons studied in the United States. Some hospitals have international accreditation, or are affiliated with hospitals abroad.

Costa Rica's top recovery centers promise excellent post-operative care. These facilities are located around the country, from the cool Central Valley mountains to sunny beach towns, and have trained medical staff around the clock, healthy menus, and gorgeous accommodations. Daily rates start at $85, all meals included. Some recovery centers also offer package deals that include airfare, cosmetic surgery, recovery care, and tours around Costa Rica.

Price Comparisons


United States

Costa Rica

Breast Augmentation $5,000-$10,000 $2,500-$3,500
Facelift $7,500-$15,000 $3,500-$5,000
Tummy Tuck $5,000-$8,500 $3,500-$4,500
Liposuction $4,000 per area $2,000 per area
Rhinoplasty $8,000-$14,000 $3,000-$4,000
Porcelain Veneers $1500 per tooth $300-$500 per tooth
Crowns $500-$900 $200-$400