7 Best Affordable Volunteer in Costa Rica Providers

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Get Free Quotes From 7 Best Cheap Costa Rica Volunteer Providers

Are you planning on volunteering in Costa Rica? Do you wonder how much it’ll cost? Are you looking for the highest rated, most affordable and most trusted companies?

Costa Rica is one of the most gorgeous destinations for travel. It boasts breathtaking scenery, including white sand beaches and verdant rainforests. You’ll be able to visit stunning beaches on both the Caribbean and the Pacific coasts. The spectacular biodiversity creates a thriving wildlife population with the potential for many fascinating hikes and side trips.

While volunteering in Costa Rica is an amazing life-changing opportunity, it can be confusing when you are searching for a safe and affordable provider. All companies are not equally created. Many demand thousands of dollars in upfront fees despite the relatively low cost of living in the region. Choosing a wrong company is very dangerous since it costs you thousands of extra dollars and can also ruin your volunteer experience.

At TravellersQuest, we want to see you joining a reputed, safe, affordable volunteer program in Costa Rica where you can make a positive impact and make a difference in the world. So, we spent hundreds of hours researching, and finding the best and safest Costa Rica volunteer providers for you.

Company Name Starting price Reviews
IFRE Volunteer $754 Go Overseas – 116 reviews
Maximo Nivel $785 Go Overseas – 1,301 reviews
Go Abroad – 1,825 reviews
Plan My Gap Year $879 Go Overseas – 404 reviews
Go Abroad – 77 reviews
International Volunteer HQ $774 Go Overseas – 2,224 reviews
Go Abroad – 1,657 reviews
RCDP International $734 Go overseas: 62 reviews
Love Volunteers $598 Go Overseas – 140 reviews
Go Abroad – 271 reviews
GoEco $795 Go Overseas – 89 reviews
Go Abroad – 729 reviews

Table updated: April 8, 2024

IFRE Volunteer

ifre volunteering costarica

IFRE Volunteers was created in 2005 and operates in 18 countries with 200 projects around the world. Registered as a 501 C 3, IFRE Volunteers is one the most highly rated organizations offering life changing volunteer in Costa Rica experiences to thousands of volunteers. IFRE’s philosophy is grounded in the belief that a meaningful hands-on experience is only created out of an intimate connection with grass root projects, local people and culture of another country. They offer an experience unlike any other with involvement in volunteer services and travel.

IFRE Volunteers Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

A volunteer trip to Costa Rica with IFRE Volunteers will change you forever. In their volunteer abroad program, you will discover your purpose while making a dramatic impact on the lives of incredible people who desperately need you. Every volunteer project is constructed with purpose and focus.

Teaching English - Teaching English is an important program, as most jobs these children will have in future will be based on their English skills. This is to widen their abilities of language, allowing them more opportunity by being bilingual. Volunteers teach English or math, help with homework, spelling, conversational English, reading and writing.

Medical Programs - Medical volunteer opportunity in Costa Rica helps those that are less fortunate and unable to get proper medical care. Doctors and nurses assist in healing the sick regardless of their situation - educating them about better hygiene and nutrition. Volunteers assist doctors and nurses with taking data pertaining to patients, their vitals, greeting and comforting them and facilitating basic primary care.

Construction - Construction volunteers actively take part in constructing or renovating schools, orphanages, and libraries that will greatly benefit the disadvantaged children. This project indeed gives you a memory of a lifetime as your valuable labor will help better someone’s life.

Eco-Agriculture – In this program, volunteers will get to work with local farmers and assist them on coffee plantations. Volunteers will work intensively in coffee production and also help the municipality regarding reforestation efforts and conservation programs.

IFRE Volunteers Reviews

IFRE Volunteers is a highly rated volunteer organization, as seen from the online reviews of volunteers who have been to volunteer in Costa Rica. IFRE’s alumni praise the overall excellent experiences they had on well-organized projects with a great learning environment. You can see some of the volunteer reviews for yourself. IFRE Volunteers has 116 reviews on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of IFRE Volunteers on Go Overseas.

IFRE Volunteers Fees

IFRE offers one of the best low-cost volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. Thousands of volunteers have come before and had wonderful results with their volunteering. Their program fees start at just $455 and there is an additional registration fee of $299. These costs include accommodation, meals, in-country support, program orientation and airport transfer.

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Maximo Nivel is one of the best volunteer providers in Costa Rica and the rest of Central America, dedicated to providing enriching and impactful experiences to their volunteers and customers. They are constantly striving to make sure that their volunteer programs are safe, affordable and of the highest quality. Making sure that the volunteer experience is a happy one is their number one priority, ensuring this through hard work and determination. With a rating of A plus, they are definitely a top choice for any volunteer trying to find volunteer work in South/Central America.

Maximo Nivel Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

Maximo Nivel has a wide selection of immersive volunteer programs for you to choose from. In Costa Rica alone they offer nine different programs to help make each volunteer’s adventure memorable and affordable.

Working with Kids - This program is designed to help aid the many abused and neglected street children. Orphanages in Costa Rica are underfunded and volunteer help is very much needed. Volunteers are expected to give love, attention, do reading, serve meals and play games.

Teaching English - Teaching English volunteer programs in Costa Rica focuses on teaching English to primary school, grade school and high school children, since many of them may pursue a career in tourism. Volunteers assist teachers in the classroom with lesson plans, reading, playing educational games and helping children practice their English-speaking skills.

Construction - The goal of this program is to refurnish schools, orphanages and homes in rural villages. Volunteers will paint, lay bricks, build roofs and carry out basic construction activities. All projects have highly skilled architects on site.

Sea Turtle Conservation – Working on a Sea Turtle Conservation project means that you will get to work besides experienced biologists and environmentalists. Your primary duties will include hatchery management, beach cleanup and patrols and data collection for research.

Maximo Nivel Reviews

Volunteers in Costa Rica with Maximo Nivel said that their trip was one of the most amazing experiences of their lives. They appreciated the work and support of the Maximo Nivel team, who worked tirelessly to ensure their comfort, needs and interests were met. Maximo Nivel has its own reviews section that you can view for yourself. This renowned organization has 1,301 reviews on Go Overseas and 1,825 reviews on Go Abroad.

Read all reviews of Maximo Nivel on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of Maximo Nivel on Go Abroad.

Maximo Nivel Fees

Maximo Nivel’s programs are affordable yet highly rewarding. Their program fees start at $785 for a week of volunteering in Costa Rica. The fee covers airport pick-up, host family accommodations (shared room), breakfast and dinner, official certificate of volunteer service and a letter of recommendation.

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Plan My Gap Year

Plan My Gap Year (PMGY) is one of the best and least expensive volunteer providers in Costa Rica. With over a decade long experience in the field, the organization runs safe, affordable and rewarding Childcare, English Teaching & Language Immersion programs in Costa Rica. Besides creating a positive impact in impoverished communities around the world, PMGY also creates a safe space where volunteers can share memories and make new connections. You can rest assured that your volunteer experience in Costa Rica will be absolutely fantastic with PMGY.

PMGY Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

PMGY’s volunteer programs are enriching and will provide a lifetime of memories for all those who decide to take it.

Childcare Program - The program is open to passionate volunteers who wish to make a lasting impact on the life of disadvantaged Costa Rican children. You’ll be involved with teaching children important life-skills, engaging them in recreational and fun activities and helping in cleaning and feeding them.

Teaching English – This program is located in the beautiful city of Coronado. The program helps underfunded and understaffed schools and the staffs of Costa Rican community schools. Your duties as a volunteer in Costa Rica will be to assist the teacher with lessons and curriculum planning. You can incorporate creative ways to teach children English and improve their conversational skills in a practical situation.

PMGY Reviews

Plan My Gap Year is well-renowned in the industry for providing affordable services without sacrificing valuable experience. Over the years, thousands of volunteers have participated in their program and made valuable contribution to make this world a better place. Scroll through some volunteer testimonials on PMGY’s own website. PMGY has 404 reviews on Go Overseas and 77 reviews on Go Abroad.

Read all reviews of PMGY on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of PMGY on Go Abroad.


PMGY’s fees consist of a program fee that depends on the type of program and the duration of your stay. Usually, program fees for 2 weeks in Costa Rica are $630. There is also a registration cost of the company that comes out to be $249. Overall, PMGY’s fees are really affordable when you look at the overall quality of their services and operations.

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

International Volunteers HQ (IVHQ) was started in 2007 with a vision to create some of the greatest travel volunteer experiences at a really affordable price. They have achieved massive success in their enterprise and are globally renowned as one of the best volunteer providers in the market. Their volunteer fees go directly to world organizations in developing countries that participate with IVHQ - creating a network of safe and incredibly affordable programs. They have a strong standing in Costa Rica, as well as 30 other countries, serving 42,000 volunteers worldwide. They are highly respected and one of the best volunteer organizations among the hundreds of volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica.

IVHQ Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

IVHQ offers 14 highly enriching projects in the cities of Manuel Antonio and San Jose of Costa Rica.

Special Needs Project (San Jose) - This program focuses on children with physical and intellectual disabilities, as well as adults suffering from autism. Their goal is to give care to them, ensuring that their needs are met through therapies and special education classes. Volunteers assist the caregivers with meals, classroom, special needs, education and overall giving the patient a break from their regular caregiver.

Turtle Conservation (Coastal) - This Costa Rica turtle volunteer program is geared towards the conservation of turtle eggs and sea turtles, creating sustainable egg protection programs. Volunteers help tag turtles, study alongside a biologist working with egg hatcheries, beach patrol etc.

Teaching , San Jose, Costa Rica -This program focuses on children, teenagers and adults practicing English and learning more. Volunteers create workshops, work alongside a teacher, help enhance their English skills and teach educational games.

Animal Care (Antonio) - This program is well-suited for animal lovers who want to take care of stray animals. Volunteers will assist with feeding animals, cleaning their enclosures, walking and playing with them and organizing fundraising campaigns.

IVHQ Reviews

IVHQ is rated among the top volunteer in Costa Rica organizations. Volunteers were appreciative of the connections they made on their journey and described it as an experience that was immeasurable to any life experience you will have. You can read through some volunteer reviews for more insight into this organization. IVHQ has 2,224 reviews on Go Overseas and 1,657 reviews on Go Abroad.

Read all reviews of IVHQ on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of IVHQ on Go Abroad.


Hundreds of volunteers sign up each year with IVHQ’s inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica to create life changing moments. The programs are safe, responsible and geared towards creating a great experience for an inexpensive price. Their program fees start at just $445 for a week, with a registration fee of $329.

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RCDP International

rcdp volunteer costarica

RCDP International is a renowned charity volunteer organization that was originally founded by a grad student from Colorado in 1998. The organization works to improve the lives of disadvantaged people in 18 countries across the world. The unique thing about RCDP International is that they work closely with local, grassroots organizations to make sure that every bit of effort is going towards helping struggling communities grow. They have some of the lowest prices on our list, making them a suitable volunteer provider in Costa Rica.

RCDP International Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

RCDP offers seven meaningful programs in San Jose, Manuel Antonia and coastal areas of Costa Rica. As per your skill and qualification, you can join any one or more of the following programs:

Children's Orphanage (San Jose, Puntarenas) -This orphanage volunteering program in Costa Rica aims to ensure that these children of abuse, abandonment and extreme adversity receive proper medical care, healthy meals, a safe warm place and plenty of love. Volunteers help with cleaning, meals, bathing, playing games, reading and helping to ensure children’s overall wellbeing.

Turtle Conservation - This turtle conservation Costa Rica program is geared at preserving the number of sea turtles. Through research and data keeping, they can monitor these beautiful creatures. Volunteers help with beach patrol, searching for eggs for the hatcheries, and research. They can also work as a part of the baby turtle release program.

Marine Conservation (Puntarenas) - This marine conservation program is aimed at protecting all marine life like sharks, pelicans, turtles and crocodiles - just to name a few. They have to ensure that they are not poached, harmed and have healthy numbers. Volunteers assist in any of these areas: education of marine life, maintenance, conservation, beach patrol, research, data collection, egg collection and much more.

Eco-Agriculture (San Jose) – Volunteers involved in the eco-agriculture project will work towards the betterment of sustainable coffee culture and practices. They will work with local farmers and incorporate eco-friendly ways to harvest, plant, grow and roast coffee.

RCDP International Reviews

Volunteers in Costa Rica found the experience amazing and the people very friendly. Housing conditions were good as per the local circumstances. They were cared for by the host families and the support provided by the organization was good. If you don’t take our word for it, you are always welcome to check out authentic volunteer reviews on RCDP’s website. RCDP International has 62 reviews on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of RCDP International on Go Overseas.

RCDP International Fees

RCDP offers some of the most affordable volunteer trips to Costa Rica. Program fees are paid directly to the host family, making RCDP one of the most honest and transparent organizations of its kind. Their program fees in Costa Rica start as low as $455 per week. However, you’ll first have to pay a registration fee of $279.

Love Volunteers

Love Volunteers is an award-winning volunteer organization, offering over 200 programs across the world. Love Volunteers genuinely cares for the impact they leave behind. They have helped many volunteers realize the power and need of social service and they continue to advocate for change and positive growth. This top-rated organization was selected because of the affordable programs they offer; of which 90 percent of the program fee is given back to local communities. They also have a very easy and personalized dashboard to go through as you prepare for your volunteer trip to Costa Rica.

Love Volunteers Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

Love Volunteers has a wide variety of programs for you to choose from – each as impactful as the next. After your trip, you’ll see the world in a new, more positive light.

Childcare: This amazing volunteer program aims to help those who are actively seeking to escape their life of poverty. It serves a real need by offering free care for children in a nurturing and safe environment while their parents’ work or study to create a better life for their families.

Education Support: This project’s goal is to help improve basic English writing and conversation abilities of the underprivileged Costa Rican children. Volunteers will help teachers conduct English lessons and engage the students in a variety of educational activities.

Environment Conservation: Nature-lovers can involve themselves in this program and help promote sustainable agriculture practices in the Sarapiquí rainforest. Volunteers can also help out by maintaining farmland and helping to care for farm animals.

Sea Turtle Conservation: Volunteers will be part of a wide-spread to protect and conserve the sea turtle population in Costa Rica. Volunteer duties include nightly beach patrols, beach clean-up, reforestation efforts and monitoring of hatchery and nursery.

Love Volunteers Reviews

Since their inception, thousands of happy and satisfied volunteers have participated in Love Volunteers’ programs. The past volunteers have highly praised the organization’s quality programs, homestay accommodation, and amazing cultural immersion opportunity. 140 reviews on Go Overseas and 271 reviews on Go Abroad makes them a highly sought after volunteer provider in Costa Rica.

Read all reviews of Love Volunteers on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of Love Volunteers on Go Abroad.

Love Volunteers Fees

Love Volunteers offers its programs in affordable rates. You can join their volunteer in Costa Rica projects anytime from 1 to 12 weeks. Program fees start as low as $299 for one week. You will also need to pay $299 as a onetime registration fee. These fees include accommodation, meals, airport pick-up, in-country support and program orientation and supervision.

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GoEco is a top-rated volunteer organization established in 2005 by Jonathan Gilben and Jonathan Tal. Both are certified ecological experts with many years of experience in travel as well as involvement in major ecological projects. With their joint expertise, they founded GoEco as a venture to raise awareness about environmental degradation and to recruit possible volunteers for the noble cause of environmental conservation. The organization has grown to cover volunteer projects in 34 countries, including Costa Rica, with a wide diversity of projects including education, humanitarian, internships etc. Their constant drive for excellence makes them one of the best low-cost volunteer experiences in Costa Rica.

GoEco Top Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica

GoEco runs a variety of community-based as well as conservation-based programs that you may be interested in. All of their programs are highly impactful and have shown definitive results.

Turtle Conservation - This program is geared towards the conservation of sea turtles, protecting their wellbeing and ensuring a growth in numbers. Volunteers study their living conditions, become a part of beach patrols, and work with the hatcheries and small turtle release.

Animal Rescue – Volunteers involved in this program will spend their time at the Alajuela Rescue Center. They’ll tend to over 100+ species of animals – helping to feed and clean them. Volunteers will also monitor animal behavior and routinely help out at facility maintenance chores.

Child Care – This program takes place in San Jose. Volunteers will have an enriching experience as they spend quality time with children and help them with their academic work. They may also hold workshops and English teaching classes.

Medical – Catered for medical students/professionals looking for real-life experience, this program will have volunteers placed in local clinics, hospitals or elderly homes. There, they’ll assist local staffs in general check-ups and help distribute medicine. Other duties include conversation therapy, updating patient records and taking vital signs.

GoEco Reviews

Every single program operated by GoEco has been rated highly across the board. Sign up for a project with this top volunteer agency and see for yourself why their alumni praise everything from the budget Costa Rica volunteer program prices to the support from both head office and local staff. You can also check out GoEco’s reviews and awards on their home website. This prestigious organization has 89 reviews on Go Overseas and 729 reviews on Go Abroad.

Read all reviews of GoEco on Go Overseas.

Read all reviews of GoEco on Go Abroad.

GoEco Fees

GoEco works hard to offer affordable and insightful volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. They keep their fees as low as possible while still offering everything you need to make your experience with them memorable and meaningful. The cost of projects starts as little as $795 for 6 days.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How can you volunteer in Costa Rica?

Volunteering opportunities in Costa Rica are plenty, with most of them being based in San Jose, Manuel Antonio or nearby coastal locations. One of the most popular volunteer placements in Costa Rica is towards preserving sea turtle and other marine species. Besides this, you can also do some community work like teaching, healthcare, renovation and childcare.

Do I need a visa to volunteer in Costa Rica?

Yes, you need a provisional visa to stay in Costa Rica as a volunteer, student or a researcher. You can get a provisional visa by enquiring about it at the nearest Costa Rica consulate or embassy.

Is volunteering for free in Costa Rica?

Sadly, volunteering cannot be done for free in Costa Rica. However, to save you the trouble of scouring for affordable program providers yourself, we have compiled the best, most affordable volunteer providers in this very article. Check out Costa Rica volunteering opportunities provided by companies like IFRE Volunteeers, IVHQ, Love Volunteers and RCDP International.

What money is best for Costa Rica?

If you are confused about what currency to use in Costa Rica, then we recommend using the colon – which is the official, local currency there. If that isn’t possible, then US dollars should also be accepted at most places.

Is Costa Rica safe for volunteers?

Absolutely! Costa Rica is one of the safest developing countries in the world. The locals are always friendly and welcoming to tourists and you needn’t worry about any violence or instability in the country.

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