Security Alert: Crime in Costa Rica

Security Alert: U.S. Embassy, San Jose, Costa Rica (March 1, 2023) 

Location: San Jose and generally in Costa Rica.

Event: The U.S. Embassy in Costa Rica advises U.S. citizens of increasing levels of crime, particularly violent crime, in Costa Rica and specifically San Jose. For this reason, the Embassy would like to remind you of the importance of personal safety and situational awareness.  For your safety, please follow these important recommendations.

Actions to Take:

  • When in a public area, remain alert and vigilant.  Pay particular attention when transiting into an unknown area, such as going into or out of a store.
  • Stay alert to your surroundings.  Leave the area if you do not feel safe.
  • Maintain a low profile in public and avoid going out alone, especially after dark.
  • Avoid excessive jewelry, electronics, and carrying and flashing large sums of cash.
  • Be prepared to enter your vehicle quickly when walking through parking lots.  Stay clear of areas that might conceal danger.
  • Avoid walking alone on the streets at night.  If this is not possible, walk in groups of two or more, or in well-lit areas.
  • Alert a close family member and/or friend if you plan to travel and leave your contact information with them.
  • When leaving your home, make sure to lock all your doors, windows, and activate your home alarm.
  • When you are driving, make sure to lock your doors.
  • Smash and grabs occur in Costa Rica.  Even if you locked your car, do not leave your phone and/or bag in a place where someone can see it.
  • If you are a victim of crime, contact Costa Rican Emergency Services at 911 and report the crime to the Organismo de Investigacion Judicial (OIJ) police at 506-2295-3000.