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Safe in Costa Rica?

Treasure Island...
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337 posts
109 reviews
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Safe in Costa Rica?

I've been reading a lot of travelers comments and am worried about our safety when we travel to Costa Rica. Is our stuff safe in the hotel room when we are out all day? We are staying in San Jose, Best Western, Jaco, Best Western, and Arenal, Volcano Lodge. Any advice please.

San Francisco...
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5,486 posts
166 reviews
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1. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

I've been to Costa Rica 4 times and have never been victim of crime. Either use the room safe to store your valuables or carry them with you

Corpus Christi...
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286 posts
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2. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

Stay home!

Can't believe I just said that. I have traveled the world and never felt as unsafe as I do in Costa Rica. But I like the place anyway.

It's basically petty thief type crime, but still will make you constantly nervous.

What is so sad is they could fix the problem with some level of minor effort. I don't think I've seen a policeman while there.

When it starts to effect tourism in a significant way they will fix it. Hope it's soon, I'd like to spend more time there.

Manuel Antonio...
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3. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

Of all the places you are visiting you need to be more carefull in Jaco. Problems in the hotels isnt something very commom. Just used your commom sense and you will be OK. NATUREGUIDE

San Francisco...
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947 posts
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4. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

Holy cow, wahoobob, you can't be serious. I'm a woman and have traveled extensively throughout CR, often with only another woman, driving alone often, own a home there, and never ever felt unsafe. On the other hand, I'm very normal, speak basic Spanish, am not doing anything illegal, and don't do anything flash. If you are normal and nice traveler, you will not have any trouble. You shouldn't leave anything on the beach or in your car in an obvious way or it might get taken. A friend left his wallet and money on the desk at a hotel and when we called hours later, the housekeeping staff had turned it in to the front desk and management sent it in a taxi to where we'd relocated. That is just an example of how we've been treated in Costa Rica. We've been there 20+ times in 10 years and those are the types of experiences we've had. Please don't let someone who isn't familiar with the area let you believe that this isn't paradise when measured by it's kind, gracious, and honest people. It is a small country, and the negatives get blown out of proportion.

Mississippi
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163 posts
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5. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

If you use common sense, it's as safe as your backyard. If you don't use common sense, no place is safe.

Carol

San Jose, Costa Rica
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46,765 posts
35 reviews
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6. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

You will be as safe as in Miami, Atlanta, New York...Los Angeles, etc...just old common sense...

roadadvisor@hotmail.com

Just buckle up and enjoy the ride in PARADISE!

Valinda CA
12 posts
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7. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

I think that if you ask most people on here they are going to tell you its safe to travel in Costa Rica. I also think they have turned a blind eye on reality.

I was there last month and have also been there before, three years ago. This time I felt a lot less safe. I did feel like there was a target on the tourists back. Of course, this can vary from person to person, depending on experiences, etc. But you do stick out as a tourist in Costa Rica. There are certain people that would love to take advantage of that fact. Maybe a small percentage, but the threat is real.

What you can do is be very careful, aware and just not do anything stupid. I carried little with me in town, was aware of people and kept car door locked, etc. I did hear of others getting their rental car broken into. Is hard to hide belongings in an SUV with no trunk. So if you get one of those, carry your camera with you or hide it before you park. As far as lugaage being taken..well we had hotel companions who had all their clothes stolen from their locked car while they were in a surfboard shop. Locked doors dont stop the expert thief, they will just force it open.

There are a lack of police, but I am not sure what can be done abou that. I think this country has a long way to go to become that safe.

Sorry to say it, but if someone on here has not had a bad experience they just deny that it is even possible for Costa Rica to be a bad place. I can understand that, but in reality, its not getting any better. Still a lovely place, just be careful.

San Francisco...
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8. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

I'm afraid those comments apply to most of the whole world MJ711.

Valinda CA
12 posts
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9. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

true, but the topic was Costa Rica, and I am just giving a point of view here.

Brooklyn, New York
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16 reviews
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10. Re: Safe in Costa Rica?

Unless things have really deteriorated since this past April, it seemed pretty safe to me (at least Manuel Antonio was fine). I live in a big city, though, so maybe taking precautions is second nature to me? Use the hotel safe, use common sense, don't bring anything super valuable with you -- you'll be fine.