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Theft Warning!

Puerto Viejo de...
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Theft Warning!

       This is not a subject the travel agents or tour operators like to discuss, but I feel it is necessary. If you are traveling to a country where there is poverty, there is theft. This is not limited to any particular country, it can happen anywhere. Travelers who are informed and aware can make wiser choices.

       I live on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica. Robberies have increased so we have formed citizens groups who work with the police and the public for prevention of crime and help for the victims. Private guards have been hired to patrol the beaches and the streets. Fortunately physical harm is rare, but often valued possessions left vulnerable are nabbed. There are things you can do to protect yourself:


1. DO NOT CARRY ANYTHING YOU DO NOT IMMEDIATELY NEED! I cannot emphasize this enough.

When you are on an outing, whether it be the beach or a bike ride:

      a. Take only the money you may need to spend - no more.

      b. Do not carry your passport. It is legal and wise to carry a           copy which shows your entry stamp.

      c. Do not carry a backpack or purse, it attracts criminals as they           imagine what valuables you might have inside. Use clothes           with pockets and take a pocket sized camera.

      d. When you go to the beach, take no more than a towel, water           bottle, sunscreen and a book. I use a crappy looking beach           bag to carry it all.

          Do your picture taking on a different occasion and return the           camera to your hotel before you go to swim.

2. Avoid isolated areas at night. I never walk the beach alone at night but I am comfortable going anywhere on the beach in the day time - because I do not bring valuables.

3. Don’t leave anything of value in sight, in your unoccupied car. A rental car with a trunk is preferable.

4. Always lock doors, shutters, windows, do not leave anything vulnerable - even for a few minutes.

If you follow these simple rules when on an outing, you can forget about theft and just have fun.

New York City, New...
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1. Re: Theft Warning!

Good advice.

I think in particular .... this can be applied to any country is correct, it's the same in NY.

It's a good reminder since sometimes people feel a false sense of security when they travel to a beautiful place with friendly people and forget about these rules that they would follow at home.

San Jose, Costa Rica
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2. Re: Theft Warning!

Thank you I thought she was talking about Bahamas!


London, United...
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3. Re: Theft Warning!

We are visiting Cahuita in April and now I am a bit worried, my husband was going to use a rucksack as he loves nature and wants to take lots of photos, as the camera has large lenses, he was going to carry it in the rucksack as we where hoping to take some long walks though the National Park and go on some trips with a guide!

Santa Teresa, Costa...
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for Mal Pais, Santa Teresa
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4. Re: Theft Warning!

teresa40, if you read carefully, the original post is not telling you to leave your cameras and lenses at home, the advice is to make sure it is safe when you are not using the camera and the lenses. Bring the equipment, just don't leave it on the beach or unattended! Lock it up when you don't have it with you! Your husband will have some great photo ops and return home with loads of wonderful pictures!

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5. Re: Theft Warning!

I can honestly say that the only people that give me the creeps in Costa Rica are the security guards. The youngster who walks the balcony of the bank in Manuel Antonio who carries a gun that`s almost as big as he is kind of made me nervous as did the security guard in the Super Joseth who stood 2 ft. away as I was buying coffee to bring home. Did he really think that this grey haired guy and his wife were going to stuff bags of coffee in their pockets? Sorry I went off topic here but I just had to vent a little bit.

Punta Uva, Costa...
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6. Re: Theft Warning!

Thanks for posting Lisa, great advise for travelers to just about anywhere here and abroad. Cahuita NP is a popular destination for nature lovers and visitors alike, there are plenty of people walking the trails, I have nor heard of any crimes reported in the park area. Bring you camera gear, is one of the most beautiful places in Costa Rica.

7. Re: Theft Warning!

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Removed on: 20 October 2012, 03:18