Health and Safety

A Guide to Health and Safety during your Costa Rica Vacation

In general Costa Rica is a very safe destination. Like in any place around the world, travelers should exercise caution and general travel precautions. Local’s are peaceful and very honest in their dealings with visitors. There are some small concerns to keep in mind and we mention them below.

Safety: Navigating the Costa Rican Landscape

Petty Crime

Petty crime is a concern, but a little caution goes a long way:

  • Secure Your Belongings: Keep your passport and valuables safe, especially in tourist hotspots.
  • Stay Vigilant: Thieves often strike in popular areas, on public transportation, and in hotel lobbies.

San José: Areas to be cautious

In the capital city, be mindful of areas prone to theft:

  • Coca-Cola Bus Terminal: Exercise caution in the vicinity of El Paso de la Vaca, Calle 12, and the Coca-Cola market.
  • Inner Downtown: Stay alert in the area between San Juan de Dios Hospital, the National Museum, Avenida 1, and Avenida 14.

Pacific Coast: Areas to be cautious

In Punt Arenas province, watch out for theft in places like Dominical, Jacó, Manuel Antonio National Park, Quepos, and the Cóbano area.

Caribbean Coast: Areas to Be Cautious

On the Caribbean coast, exercise vigilance in Cahuita, Puerto Limón, and Puerto Viejo.


Protect your finances with these simple tips:

  • Monitor Transactions: Regularly check your bank statements for any unauthorized activity.
  • Card Safety: Use ATMs in well-lit areas, avoid suspicious card readers, and shield your PIN.

Spiked Food and Drinks

  • Be Wary of Accepting: Don't accept snacks or drinks from strangers, and never leave your food unattended.
  • Unregulated Alcohol.
  • Exercise caution when consuming alcohol.
  • Choose Wisely: Stick to reputable brands, avoid buying from individuals, and seek medical help if you feel unwell.

Women's Safety in Costa Rica

Travel in Groups: Especially at night, exploring with companions adds an extra layer of safety.

Stay Aware: Be vigilant in crowded areas, and report any incidents promptly.

Costa Rica Driving, Road Safety and Driving Habits

Costa Rica's roads have their challenges:

  • Poor Conditions: Roads may be unpaved, with hazards like potholes and sharp curves, particularly during the rainy season.
  • Driving Habits: Drivers may not adhere to traffic laws, and nighttime driving can be risky.

Routine Vaccines

Before your trip, ensure your routine vaccines are up-to-date:

Pre-Travel Vaccines and Medications:

  • Hepatitis A and B
  • Yellow Fever
  • Covid-19
  • Malaria
  • Rabies:

Depending on your itinerary, vaccines or medications may be recommended.

Safe Food and Water Precautions

Protect yourself from foodborne illnesses:

  • Bottled Water: Stick to bottled or purified water, and avoid tap water and ice in drinks.
  • Choose Reputable Eateries: Opt for well-reviewed restaurants to minimize the risk of foodborne illness.

Insect Bite Prevention:

Defend against insect-borne diseases:

  • Use Repellent: Apply insect repellent on exposed skin, and cover up with light-colored, long clothing.

Medical Services and Facilities

Know where to turn for healthcare:

  • Public Hospitals: Offer good services but expect potential language barriers.
  • Private Clinics: Located mainly in San José, they provide excellent healthcare but can be expensive.


Ensure you have your essential medications:

  • Bring Enough Supply: Carry sufficient quantities of your prescription medications.
  • Prescription Details: Keep a paper and electronic copy of your prescriptions.

Now equipped with knowledge, venture into Costa Rica with confidence. Embrace the Pura Vida lifestyle, and may your journey be filled with health, safety, and unforgettable moments.

Seek out the advice from an expert travel planner at Voyagers Travel to craft a safe and experience packed itinerary!