I did Tico Lingo for three weeks and I'm so glad I did! I learned so much Spanish and had a ton of fun exploring Costa Rica.
The homestay: My homestay mother, Roxy, was one of the kindest people I've ever met. She truly treated me as a part of her family. Heredia is a small, quiet, and safe city. At first I found it hard to adjust to the slow, even sleepy pace of life, but soon I came to appreciate how peaceful and relaxing it was. Plus, my weekends were jam-packed with adventures (visiting volcanos, the beach, national parks, etc.) so it was nice to come back to a laid-back home.
The classes: The classes were challenging, yet also relaxed and flexible. Jimena was a great teacher. The lessons were highly personalized, based on the content that students wanted to work on. Class sizes are extremely small, and students are sorted into classes based on their Spanish level. The first week I was the only person in my class, and in other weeks there were only four students in the class. (New students come in each week, so I will note that sometimes you have to repeat content you've already learned because a new student arrived, but that also works as a review.) I would say that every week at Tico Lingo teaches you as much as an entire semester of high school Spanish. There's also the option to sign up for yoga, cooking classes, or Zumba classes ($7-$10 per class), which were fun and another great way to improve vocabulary.
Coronavirus precautions: Class sizes were very small. The school was quite spacious and airy, and we normally had windows open during class, which made for good air flow. Students and teachers did not wear masks because that would have made it far too difficult for us to understand each other. Other school employees, such as the cleaning staff, did wear masks. We were not required to sit six feet apart from each other, but there was room to do so if you wished. The vast majority of students were vaccinated, but I wish that the school required *all* students to be vaccinated if they come from a country where shots are available. It's not responsible to encourage people to pursue international travel if they purposefully refuse to get a vaccine.