According to the 2004 Cost-of-Living Survey I found, San Jose, Costa
Rica is cheaper than Monterrey, Mexico. When ranked most to least
expensive, Monterrey came in at 28 cities higher than San Jose in
To explain this better every year the cities are ranked for cost of
living by Mercer. New York City is given a base score of 100 and
everyone else is based off that. If the # is higher than 100, it's
more expensive. Less than 100, less expensive. Moscow is the 2006
highest cost of living city with a score of 123.9.
San Jose comes in at 58.1 in 2006 while Monterrey is 71.6 in 2006.
Now, as far as crime rate, let me summarize for you. Crime in Costa
Rica has gone up, especially against "outsiders".
Monterrey has the lowest per capita crime rate of all the (large) Mexican citites.
So, in summary, San Jose has a much lower cost of living, but a higher
crime rate. Monterrey has a higher cost of living, but a lower crime
Google searches used:
"crime rate" in monterrey mexico
"crime rate" in san jose costa rica
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If this answer requires further explanation, please request
clarification before rating it, and I'll be happy to look into this