5 Possible Dangers to Avoid in Costa Rica
Costa Rica is a country that lots of tourists enjoy visiting. Many Americans like going there because it has gorgeous natural attractions, such as soft sand beaches and thrilling jungles with thousands of plants and animal species. You can also check out the volcanoes, the Pre-Columbian Gold Museum, and all kinds of aquatic sports.
However, if you visit this beautiful Central American country, you do need to watch out for some particular dangers. We’ll talk about a few of those possible dangers to avoid in this article so you can enjoy your trip as safely as possible and come back with only happy stories for your friends and family.
One of the biggest dangers in Costa Rica is vehicular accidents of various kinds. There are narrow roads in some areas. Vehicles can barely fit by one another. If you commandeer a taxi, the driver will need to watch out that they don’t hit any pedestrians, particularly in the bustling marketplaces.
You can also look into bike rental. It’s an exciting way to get around if you get yourself a guide. Still, you must avoid larger vehicles.
The NHTSA says that more than 700 people die in the US every year in bike accidents. The stats for Costa Rican bike accidents aren’t readily available, but you certainly want to avoid this occurrence while traveling there.
Human-made dangers are one of the other risks of which Costa Rican travelers need to be aware. The US Embassy in Costa Rica says to watch out for petty theft. Generally, that means you should take precautions like never leaving your baggage unattended. You should definitely keep it in your possession at all times, and you should always lock your hotel room if you go out to explore. Don’t leave your bags, wallet, purse, keys, identification, etc., lying out by the pool when you take a swim.
If you walk through the market, watch out for pickpockets. If you feel as though someone jostles you while you’re walking through a crowd, you might be down a wallet or a pair of sunglasses.Carry your valuables using a money belt, and if you carry a purse, make sure it zips up. Keep a tight grip on it as well to make sure no one snatches it.
Unfortunately, armed robbery is also possible if you leave your hotel and walk around unlit or unguarded areas, especially at night. The US Embassy mentions that there have been several notable robberies and robbery attempts in recent years.
If you stay with a guide, only go out in the daytime, and stay away from remote areas, you should be much safer than if you try to explore on your own. Some individuals who travel abroad seek out the most “authentic” experience possible, and they shun guides. If you do this in Costa Rica, though, you make yourself a much more tempting target, particularly if you demonstrate that you have money with you.
Financial Fraud or Theft
You should be careful as you go about various financial interactions. Only exchange your money in banks. If you exchange your US currency for local currency on the street, it could be counterfeit.
You should also retain all your credit card receipts while you visit. Check your account balances regularly, but only on secure Wi-Fi networks.
You should also try to avoid using debit cards if you want to make a point-of-purchase sale. Some thieves might use skimmers to get your number, and they can swiftly clean out your account before you realize what is happening.
Deadly Animals and Insects
While there’s gorgeous wildlife everyone in Costa Rica, there are also some potentially deadly species you’ll need to avoid. If you go into the jungle, you might encounter a crocodile if you get too near the water. If you plunge into the ocean and thrash about, there are bull sharks that won’t think twice about putting you on the menu.
The jungles also feature both pumas and jaguars. There are venomous snakes, such as the coral snake and the fer-de-lance. Some Costa Rican spiders can also deliver a nasty bite, such as the Brazilian wandering spider. The thing to do is to not plunge off into the jungle on your own, and if you do see any snake or spider, don’t approach it.
While there are some potential dangers, there’s also plenty of fun to be had in Costa Rica. If you exercise caution, you can have a relaxing vacation and a wonderful time.