Intensive Spanish Immersion Program in Heredia, Costa Rica

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Tico Lingo offers the most personalized and immersive Spanish programs in Costa Rica. We offer students a relaxed learning environment with small classrooms, free coffee, and good vibes.

Our Intensive Spanish Immersion Program aims to give students linguistic fluency through cultural immersion and an intensive Spanish curriculum. We emphasize oral communication and application by connecting students directly to the local community through conversational classes and homestay accommodation.

  • Flexible Start Dates.
  • Non-Toursty Environment.
  • Fun Add-ons Available.

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Questions & Answers

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9.86 Rating
based on 42 reviews
  • Instruction 9.8
  • Support 9.9
  • Fun 9.6
  • Housing 9.7
  • Value 9.8
Showing 1 - 8 of 42
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Yes, I recommend this program

Best experience of my life

Being a student at Tico Lingo and living in Heredia for 10 weeks was the best decision I ever made. I had two amazing teachers - both were quickly able to analyze my level of Spanish and adapt to teaching me what I needed to know in order to get better. You build relationships with everyone at the school, not just your teacher and classmates. It's like a family and everyone is so supportive.

My host family and I became real family. From day 1 they treated me like a son and I knew I could depend on them for anything.

Heredia is a cool small city that is very walkable. It's a great place to stay and attend school. If you're feeling adventurous on the weekend your a short drive away to awesome nature or San Jose, the capital city.

My advice to you is if you are thinking about becoming a student at Tico Lingo.. Do it!! You will not regret it.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
My first day was my most nerve-racking moment. Moving into a home with a family that doesn't speak my native language. The sudden realization that I'm far away from home. It's a natural moment of nerves that quickly passes.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Tico Lingo is the right choice

Choosing Tico Lingo is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. My Spanish improved immensely and I found a home away from home.

My experience with Tico Lingo is multidimensional. I’ve taken group and independent classes both in person and online and had the pleasure of working with 2 different teachers. Though I planned on living in Costa Rica for 1 month, I love my Costa Riccan host family so much I decided to quarantine with them for the foreseeable future. Today is my 6 week anniversary.

Tico Lingo classes (both online and in-person) made my high school and university Spanish classes look bad. Humans can not learn a language by memorizing vocabulary and “fill in the blank” worksheets. Why? We need to develop an ear for the language and we need context in order for the language to actually stick. At Tico Lingo, students are expected to speak, listen and interact. This participation based curriculum propelled my Spanish from an elementary to intermediate level in just 4 weeks. Hell yeah!

Tico Lingo is a rarity, a collection of genuine people who run a remarkable business. The teachers, administrators and staff... there are no words. #puravida

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Yes, I recommend this program

One of the best places to learn Spanish

I studied for a month at Tico Lingo in early 2019 as part of a gap semester abroad in Latin America straight out of high school. Despite travelling solo, I never felt alone due to the amazing staff and social scene at Tico Lingo. I arrived with a very low/basic level of Spanish. I did the 30 hour per week Super Intensive program, which involved 4 hours of group lessons and 2 hours of private lessons everyday. Despite being called "super intensive", it never felt this way. The classes were low pressure, interactive, fun, and flew by everyday. Freddie and Zaida, my teachers, were both incredibly friendly and willing to help with anything I needed. Within a month, I was conversational and having great conversations with my host family. Without a doubt, I learned more in one month at Tico Lingo than I did in 3 years of high school Spanish. In addition to the classes, Tico Lingo also had a great social scene. There were social activities everyday after class, as well as a weekly social/conversational practice with Heredia locals. If you're ever bored, there's no shortage of things to do around Heredia. I recommend Tico Lingo to anyone of any age who wants to learn Spanish. During my time there, I met students of all ages, 18-65+. Don't let age or fear keep you from doing this. Tico Lingo is seriously worth it.

What would you improve about this program?
Nothing comes to mind that I would improve. This is a really great place to learn Spanish.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Easily exceeded expectations

I have been at the Tico Lingo Spanish school in Heredia, Costa Rica for the past five weeks and have one more week of study remaining. I am 64 years of age and retired. I came here as a beginner who knew a tiny bit of Spanish and understood very little when listening to others speak the language.

Considering that I grossly underestimated the scope of learning a new language and have been humbled by how big a project it is, I can still emphatically state that my experience here has greatly exceeded my expectations in every way.

This school is fortunate enough to employ some extraordinary individuals. Head of Spanish, Freddie Fariña, is simply a brilliant linguist and teacher. His ability to understand the English language in more detail than most native English speakers has made the inevitable confusion that arises from fundamental differences between these two languages remarkably easier to understand and navigate.

He is simply the best Spanish teacher I’ve ever encountered.

The other professors at the school are all highly qualified and effective as well and through some optional private lessons I have had the delightful experience of studying under most of them.

The support staff, especially Yenifer in the front office who is the heart and soul of the day to day operations, all combine their personalities with those of the faculty to create an environment that is welcoming, supportive, and always fun.

The range of students here is delightful, from many young adults, middle aged folks on up through old guys like me, with everyone interacting together in friendly and respectful ways. It’s a great atmosphere. I have made several friends who will remain my friends for the rest of my life.

My homestay experience has also been more than I could’ve hoped for. I can only speak for my particular hostess, Sandra, but the food has been delicious and my freedom to come and go as I please has never been a problem. Her home is lovely with an indoor garden, it’s open and airy and I feel completely at home here.

The school was founded about five years ago by a young American named Christopher who, along with his friend Freddie Fariña has done a remarkable job in assembling his staff and creating a lovely environment.

I chose the school for number of reasons before knowing any of the people there. Primarily, I wanted to be in a safe environment where the temperature was not excessively hot and where there were fewer tourists who might contaminate my environment with English.

The town of Heredia in Costa Rica sits at about 3600 feet in altitude on the Leeward side of the mountains thus enjoying temperate weather and a dryer climate. It is remarkably comfortable here. The small city of Heredia has it’s downtown at a 10 minute walk from the school and is a half hour by car from the international airport. It is remarkably safe and friendly, with clean streets and lovely people with lovely parks and a very cool market place.

I miss my wife and look forward to returning home but I have every intention of returning here for another six weeks of instruction. I have at least quadrupled my Spanish abilities during this time and although I still have far to go before I can understand native speakers easily, I now know that that goal is within my reach. I highly recommend the school to anybody looking for a positive experience in learning Spanish. I will be back.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Relax and let yourself become part of their community. This is just a lovely group of people who thoroughly enjoy meeting folks from other countries.
Read my full story
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Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience!

A once (or twice or thrice...) in a lifetime opportunity to study with amazing teachers, be surrounded by compassionate people and experience cultural immersion. What I loved was the personalized attention and the support of the staff. This suits my learning compared to a larger institution. The level of instruction was fast paced but allowed adequate time and practice for learning. Love, love the people here.

The community surrounding the school is safe; the people are warm and kind. The central mercado has wonderful food and there's a huge farmers market every Friday.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Sign up for the program. You won't regret it!

There are opportunities also to organize Tours, Yoga, Cooking and dance classes
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Yes, I recommend this program

Best Spanish School in Costa Rica!

My 8-weeks at Tico Lingo flew by! I loved the people, the classes, the learning environment, and my homestay. I really recommend it to anyone who would like to learn Spanish quickly and organically. Classes are very well balanced between speaking, writing, reading and grammar. My weakest area was speaking so I was very pleased to have the confidence to speak the language by the end of my programme.

I instantly felt part of the family at my homestay. I received a delicious breakfast and dinner everyday and got to practice my Spanish with the family at mealtimes. I hope to keep in touch with them back home in the UK!

I loved getting involved in the activities and tours they had on offer at the school. I signed up for dance and cooking classes with my classmates and had so much fun.

During my time here I fell in love with Costa Rica and I really didn't want to leave - I felt like I made some long-lasting friends at Tico Lingo too! Pura vida chicos muchas gracias por todo!!

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
During my time at the school, there was an opportunity to take a cooking class. We made empanadas, which I had seen before but have never tried! They were delicious and I can't wait to make them again for my friends back home.
Response from Tico Lingo

Thank you for the beautiful words Helen! We saw you're Spanish speaking skills grow immensily over the 2-months you were here. Super impressive!

¡Esperamos que esté bien y que todavía esté hablando español todos los días! ¡Pura vida!

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Yes, I recommend this program

A life-changing experience

For me, my time with the Tico Lingo school felt like a life-changing experience. How you might ask? First, my ability to speak Spanish has seen a quantum improvement. When I arrived in Costa Rica, I basically didn’t speak any Spanish. I knew a few words but no way could I hold down a conversation with anyone. By the time I left the school, with a willing partner I was able to small talk talk with them for over an hour entirely in Spanish. I’m not fluent by any means I am still learning, but in such a short amount of time gaining the ability to make a connection with another person that I would not have previously been able to communicate with, to me that is priceless. The other real strength of the school is the community around it. The staff at the school is amazing. I can say with complete sincerity that I think they did everything in their power to make sure that the students had a positive experience at both the school and in Costa Rica in general. I had the opportunity to room and board with a family associated with the school. I highly recommend this for anyone attending the school. Being a guest in home where the people were all native to Costa Rica and they were actively encouraging you and guiding you through the language and the country was an invaluable experience. By the time I left, my Tico family felt like REAL family. The connections with the other students is powerful as well. Being in class together and going out exploring a new country together makes for fast friends. Since I have been back, rarely does a day go by where I don’t text with someone that I met through Tico Lingo. Also, the school is in the perfect location. The people of Costa Rica speak Spanish a lot more clearly and slowly than in other countries. In general, most of the people that I talked to there were really supportive and patient when you were making the effort to try and talk to them in their native language. Costa Rica is beautiful and very safe for tourists. On the weekends when you are not in class you can go out on adventures. I went somewhere different every weekend and there were no bad choices. Everywhere we went was amazing! My time at Tico Lingo was magical and I am shouting from the rooftops that if you are reading this you should give it a try. You won’t regret it.

Yes, I recommend this program

Four Weeks In Paradise

I had been backpacking for months when I arrived in Heredia. It's a great little nice safe town up in the mountains with perfect weather: hot during the day and cold at night for sleeping. I wanted to settle down, unpack my bags, and learn Spanish for a month. This program cost about the same if not less than I would've spent just hanging around Costa Rica so it was an absolute no brainer deal for me. I moved in with a wonderful Ticamama named Mercedes who took such amazing care of me; my clothes were always washed, dried, and folded, plus every meal was basically all you can eat (I never finished). She also provided Spanish movies and games to play. My class had a group of outspoken American guys who had coincidentally lived in Okinawa, Japan around the same time. The classroom was really alive with positive energy and plenty to talk and laugh about, but I also became close friends with students in the other classes as well. On the weekends we would do trips to the volcanoes, beaches, lakes, or just go out clubbing till the sun rose. I went from a beginner to an intermediate and am seriously considering doing this program again next winter to take my Spanish to the next advanced level. I highly recommend the four week program at Tico Lingo!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
You may want to consider some private lessons if you feel you're falling behind in the group class or if you want to advance to the next level (that's what I did).