I (Vicki Skinner - aka "THE Sarong Goddess") created this blog in 2007 to share DETAILED Finds•Lists•Info•Events•Experiences to help bring more EASE to people living in, visiting or thinking of moving to Costa Rica since DETAILS are NOT easy to find!
I’m NOT an expert (an "expert" 2 ME knows 101%-NOT me). I believe in sharin info•helping where I can! And with over 2,200 entries, so some things might be out of date, so if you find old info PLEASE help each other by getting the updated info & sharing it with me to revise. At least you have some basic info to get you started.
Better yet - do you have extra time on your hands & looking for a volunteer project? Since this blog is a labor of love & RARELY does anyone share a donation (even though MANY have said how much it's helped them), I could REALLY use help updating info. Spanish speakers ESPECIALLY welcome since my VicLish can be somewhat limited at times!!

Has my blog helped in any way? Helped find something•brought more EASE? More exposure or business?
I welcome you to show YOUR appreciation for my efforts!
(see below other ways to show your appreciation)
The easiest way is with PAYPAL - Attn: LivingLifeInCostaRica@gmail.com
(you do NOT need to have a PayPal account to do this - just a credit or debit card)
Do YOU have/know of a Business•Event•News•Place•Things 4 Sale•Rent to add? Email:


• APPLE LAPTOP - Do you have a Laptop you're not using? Mine recently broke so I'm using a lender. Must be new enough to run current Skypes & have an SDCard slot.
• Amazon.com or GoDaddy.com Credit•Gift Certificate (attn: SarongGoddess@gmail.com)
• Something else to share?? A gift certificate or invite for your business? I'm open!! (at times I'll add other things here that I'm seeking)

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

TRAVEL ADVISORY • SECURITY ADVISORY from the U.S. AND Canadian Embassy to their Citizens Living in & Traveling in Costa Rica!!

Ok - with 2 of the BIGGEST providers of tourists to Costa Rica now issuing Travel/Security Advisories/Warnings to it's citizens coming to Costa Rica - MAYBE NOW Costa Rica can get their head out of the sand and QUIT being in DENIAL!!!
Crimes being committed are happening more and more here and more of them are getting violent - both to tourists, ExPats and even to their own people!
These governmental advisories I'm SURE are based on how OFTEN their people are coming into their embassies to replace their stolen passports+++!!!  The police/government MUST QUIT blaming it on the media making up these stories!!!

If you've had ANY form of crime committed to you or someone you know, PLEASE send me the DETAILS (the more detailed the better) along with ANY pictures you can share to
as I'm starting to compile this information!!!

NOTE:  Canada ALSO issued a Travel Advisory on Costa Rica

COSTA RICA - Exercise a high degree of caution
There is no nationwide advisory for Costa Rica. However, you should exercise a high degree of caution and be vigilant at all times due to increasing levels of violent crime.


Security Message for U.S. Citizens from the U.S. Embassy, San Jose, Costa Rica
March 26, 2013
Increase in Armed Robberies in the Puerto Viejo
Within the last few weeks, the Embassy has received increased reports of armed robberies of tourists in the Puerto Viejo area. In light of this situation, the U.S. Embassy advises U.S. citizens living in or visiting the Puerto Viejo area to remain cautious and vigilant with regard to their personal safety and security.
In the past four weeks, three armed robberies of U.S. citizens have occurred in the Puerto Viejo area, in addition to armed invasions of two hotels and one residence. Police in Puerto Viejo have informed the Embassy that they are undertaking active preventative measures to avoid further incidents of this type. Armed robbery continues to be the primary criminal threat facing tourists in the Southern Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica.
If you are the victim of a crime abroad, you should contact the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy. Although the investigation and prosecution of a crime are solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you to understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed. In Costa Rica the U.S. Embassy can be reached by calling +506 2519-2000.   
The U.S. Department of State encourages all U.S. citizens to read its Country Specific Information for Costa Rica or any country to which they are planning a trip at http://www.travel.state.gov  and specifically http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1048.html for updated information on travel and security in the Costa Rica.  Information can also be obtained from the Department of State by calling +1-888-407-4747 within the United States or by calling +1-202-501-4444 outside the United States.  911 is the emergency line in Costa Rica.
We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Costa Rica to enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step.

 STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  You can also download our free Smart Traveler App, available through 
iTunes and the Android market, to have travel information at your fingertips.
If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.   Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov.



This is REALLY SAD these types of things are happening more and more in Costa Rica - ESPECIALLY in such a BEAUTIFUL area (MY FAVORITE beach area of Costa Rica - on the Atlantic/Caribbean/East Coast)!!! 

Crime HAS gotten to be quite the issue in Costa Rica - ESPECIALLY targeting tourists.
I just returned from spending 6 weeks living in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua (I'm SERIOUSLY considering living there PART TIME in between pet/house sitting gigs as it's SOOOO MUCH CHEAPER than Costa Rica)
and I met and interviewed LOTS of people from all over the world, all ages, economic backgrounds, etc. and 93% of them said they would NOT be going to Costa Rica or returning to it - #1 was because of prices are SOOOO HIGH and #2 was because they themselves or someone they knew/met/heard from had had some sort of "security issue" - mainly things stolen in their hotel or car (though many did NOT have it REALLY locked up) or robbed at gunpoint. 

Gauging on how MANY U.S. passports are stolen - I'm SURE LOTS of the Safety/Travel Advisory warnings are coming from ACTUAL REPORTS from the embassies.

Have you been to the U.S. embassy on a Monday - ESPECIALLY after a holiday??  Maybe people will actually GET how OFTEN this happens here!

(fyi - MOST people I've spoken with do not bother to report the crimes - "Por Que"!!!)

What EVER you do, if someone approaches you with a weapon - PLEASE do NOT be foolish and resist as THAT IS OFTEN when "things happen" to people!!  Everything is replaceable - EXCEPT your life!!!

Goddess forbid you have a crime committed against you - IMMEDIATELY contact the
OIJ - Organismo de Investigación Judicial  
(pronounced “O-E-ho-tah” 
Costa Rica's version of the FBI who is who you report such crimes against)
and for how to replace your U.S. Passport if it was stolen check out Vicki's step-by-step experience at:

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