If you are one of the many people worried due to the travel advisory issued by the U.S. this week and are wondering… is it safe to travel to Costa Rica? stay with us and learn valuable and objective information.
U.S. Travel Advisory
Last Tuesday (January 7, 2020) the United States Department of State downgraded Costa Rica from Level 1, which advises normal precautions when traveling, to Level 2, recommending increased caution for tourists.
The United States Embassy in San José reported that the change is due to an adjustment in the evaluation metric. However, it was not detailed what this methodology consists of. In addition, Costa Rica was informed that the US will vary the category to most countries in the world, passing them from level 1 to 2, a change that will take place gradually.
So, is it safe to travel to Costa Rica?
Statistics show it is safe to travel to Costa Rica during your next vacation, here some important facts:
- Costa Rica´s homicide crime rate was 11.2 (units per 100,000 population) for 2019, which represents a decrease for the second year in a row. If you compare this rate to the U.S. states such as Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Missouri have higher rates.
- Other countries in level 2, in which Costa Rica is ranked, are: Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, France, Italy, the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the United Kingdom in Europe. In Latin America, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile and Colombia are also located in this category.
- Thefts such as cell phone and passport theft affected 688 tourists in 2019, representing only 0.02% of the total number of visitors the country receives annually, according to official data from the Ministry of Public Security.
- The adjustment is particularly surprising because it equals Costa Rica with countries on the continent that are among the most violent in the world and whose rates exceed 50 homicides per 100 thousand population.
- It is important to mention that all requests for improvement in tourism security that the United States Embassy in San José has sent to the Government of Costa Rica have not only been addressed but exceeded with successful results, particularly the recommendations on the prevention of drowning.
Main measures taken in the last 18 months by the Government of Costa Rica so guarantee it is safe to travel to Costa Rica:
- An annual budget of US $ 1 million was established to strengthen tourism security, thanks to the signing of the framework agreement (2018-2023) between the Ministry of Public Security and the Costa Rican Tourism Institute.
- The National Commission for the Prevention and Attention of Drowning was created, with the objective of providing security and protecting the life and integrity of tourists on the coasts
- Warning signs have been installed in 100 beaches advising precaution for their surf currents
- In international airports, 11 videos are being projected continuously with preventive advice on theft, public transport and adventure activities, among others.
- 615 route orientation signs were installed on the destination and busiest tourist traffic routes in the country
Information is taken from the press release issued by the ICT, the country’s main Tourism Chambers, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Worship and the Ministry of Public Security on Tuesday, January 7, 2020.
Feel safe to travel to Costa Rica staying with us during your next visit to Costa Rica. All our luxury vacation rentals are located within an international renowned gated community on the beautiful North Pacific Coast. Contact us for more information.