Costa Rica is the most stable and prosperous country in Central America. However, over recent years crime has become a considerable concern, and foreign travelers are vulnerable. The risk is heightened in the capital, San Jose, as well as at beaches and other tourist hotspots, including Tamarindo and Quepos. Theft from public transport is common, as is theft from hotels.
It is likely a large proportion of violence that occurs in the region has been linked to the drug trade, and targeting of locals is more significant.
Road travel across Costa Rica can be unpredictable and dangerous. Road conditions are poor, and potholes are prolific. Road Traffic Collisions (RTCs) are frequent, and fatality rates are high due to the inadequate state of roads. Local drivers regularly ignore road traffic laws and drive erratically. Roads with high volumes of traffic and congestion, are a breeding ground for criminals. Common crimes include accessing vehicles when traffic is forced to slow down, or if your vehicle has stopped at traffic lights or road junctions. Criminals are known to steal valuables and armed violence cannot be ruled out.