• Costa Rica
Project Types
Service Learning Medical Veterinary Service

Program Details

Host Family Hotel
Medium Group (16-30)


Starting Price
Price Details
Program Fee includes:

Airport pick-up and drop-off.
All ground transportation between sites.
Medical Insurance
2 meals during clinic days and 1 meal during recreation days
In-country orientation.
Program Manual.
24-hour staff assistance.
All medicine, equipment, supplies, and professionals needed to successfully perform on clinic days.
Evening group activities.
All recreation activities listed in trip itinerary.
Border and customs fees (when applicable)
Statement of Service Hours
Certificate of Participation. (Letters of recommendation will be assessed on a case-by-case basis)
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Airport Transfers Equipment Meals Some Meals Transportation Wifi
What's Not Included
Airfare Some Meals Travel Insurance Visa
Dec 28, 2021
Jan 05, 2020
8 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

Despite having a relatively strong primary health care system, Costa Rica still has many challenges to address. This is where we first started back in 2008 and since then, we have served thousands of people and animals.

We currently intervene through three main fields of work: Medical, Dental and Veterinary, which are designed to promote health, ensuring a long-lasting impact while students develop both intercultural & leadership skills in a real-world context.

Vida offers a unique positive learning environment that will completely change your perspective on the idea of serving others. Students will have a chance to work with local licensed professionals while providing services to the communities we have partnered with.

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • Hands-on experience working with local doctors, dentists and veterinarians
  • Provide healthcare and positively impact underserved communities in Central America
  • Cultural Immersion

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Program Reviews

4.87 Rating
based on 55 reviews
  • 5 rating 89.09%
  • 4 rating 9.09%
  • 3 rating 1.82%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Impact 4.95
  • Support 4.85
  • Fun 4.7
  • Value 4.7
  • Safety 4.95
Showing 1 - 8 of 55 reviews
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Medical Vida Review

I had a lot of fun and learned hands on with a great team of doctors, staff, and fellow volunteers. I loved the opportunity it provided me and the confidence that it helped give me. In fact it helped me know that I had chosen the correct field for me and helped clear any doubts I had about a career in medicine. It has left me motivated to want a career in medicine and has left me wanting to go back on another medical trip with Vida. The memories I made during this trip will last a life time and vida is definitely worth recommending to a friend.

What would you improve about this program?
I would ask that the recreation days be more open to the individual to decide instead of as a group.
119 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

VIDA Trip OTCR122719

I am incredibly happy that I joined Vida’s Volunteer trip to Costa Rica. I was able to practice and learn, and affirmed my belief that I would like to pursue a career in dentistry. The dental doctors went above and beyond to support the dental students, ensuring to answer all and any questions we had, and provided amazing demonstrations. I made many new friends on this trip and have been able to make so many memories. I would love to go on another Vida Volunteer trip, and hope I could further my experience in a new country!

What would you improve about this program?
I found it difficult that there were no Spanish translators available for the dental team. Having no Spanish knowledge myself, it was difficult to communicate with the patients when they would talk to me in Spanish and I had no idea what they were saying.
I would also recommend spreading the clinic days more - waking up in the early hours of 6am for three days straight, each working 8 hours and being on our feet all day, left the majority of the students visibly tired.
122 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Experience

It was a life changing experience. It may seem cliche but it truly is. Reading reviews before coming, I saw how many people loved it and I was still extremely skeptical about it but I am so glad I came. It was the trip of a lifetime. I learned so much more than i thought I would and made way more friends than I expected. I went in with pretty low expectation to be honest and I was blown out of the water. The kindness of the staff and the people of Costa Rica was truly enlightening and it made me more grateful and appreciative of everything I have.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Don’t be shy or afraid of going outside of your comfort zone. It’s a little nerve wracking at first, especially when you first get there but just trust the leaders and have fun. It’s truly amazing
115 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Costa Rica

This trip is a great experience for students looking for experience! The purpose and the work we do involved in this organization is absolutely incredible and once in a lifetime opportunity. The faces of patients brightens your day and makes you realize how much this program helps the people of these countries. Paulo and Cairo were absolutely amazing and really made us feel at home and made the trip enjoyable. They answered all our silly questions and taught us about the culture. Vida is great!!

What would you improve about this program?
the professionalism of the leaf doctors with volun
109 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Vida- Costa Rica

Paulo and Cairo were absolutely amazing at organizing everyone. They were very professional throughout the entire trip, and they were always willing to help with anything that we needed. Marcia was a fantastic teacher for the dental team!! Marcia, Vanessa, and Javier all did an amazing job teaching us and letting us assist with extractions, fillings, cleanings, and assisted brushing. Although it was pricey, we got to do a lot that we otherwise would not get to. The transportation was also reliable.

What would you improve about this program?
The medical doctors had unprofessional relationships with the students and the hotel did not have good WiFi!
116 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Absolutely fantastic

This VIDA trip was definitely one to remember and that I would do again. I was on the vet team, and the mentors were amazing. They were kind, helpful, and were interested in you and your questions. The amount of hands on work is nothing like what you can get in the states and I’m so happy I got the opportunity to experience it. I will go home and recommend this to any pre vet student I know and make sure to get VIDAS name out there on my campus. I’m even contemplating being a VIDA coordinator for my school to bring some students back here with me to get this opportunity. But overall, I made so many friends and made so many new memories that will last a lifetime.

What would you improve about this program?
I would just like there to be better communication before the trip starts. Sometimes I felt clueless like what to do at the airport when I landed and when exactly payments were due. It was on a early email but there should be reminder emails in my opinion.
113 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Vet Program

The vet program is way more hands on than anticipated, and allows you the opportunity to know if being a vet is something you really want to do with your life. The staff on the vet team tries to push you out of your comfort zone by quizzing students, having students research special cases found in the clinic to grasp a true understanding, and teach through hands on activities. You also have the ability to meet so many different people, and create long lasting friendships. It is truly a life changing trip, and I am so glad that I was able to be a part of it.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Pack a towel and aloe especially for home stays and beach days
107 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

My Experience w/ VIDA

VIDA is an awesome opportunity for any student who is interested in working in the dental, veterinary or medical fields in the future. Especially for future dentist and veterinarians because they get to be VERY hands on and assist in minor surgical procedures. Students on the medical teams are also very hands on as they get to take down patient clinical histories, perform physical exams & learn other medical tests while the doctors ultimately diagnose the patients. It’s a great way to make friends

What would you improve about this program?
Certain doctors need to work on their professionalism
121 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers