Hurricane Otto: An update for our Costa Rica travelers.
As many of our clients are traveling to Costa Rica for the Holidays, we wanted to give you an update on the situation that the country is going through after Hurricane Otto.
Last Thursday November 24th, Hurricane Otto directly hit the southern Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua and the northern zone of Costa Rica. Other areas indirectly affected include Costa Rica’s Southern Pacific coast and some areas in Panama. Our top priority is the safety of our clients.
After receiving all local reports and hurricane alerts our in-country operators decided that it was safest to relocate all clients who were located on the Caribbean coast to hotels in safer areas. Tours on the Caribbean side and water-related adventure activities around the country, such as rafting, canoeing, canyoning, where safety was compromised, were canceled.
It is very important to let all our clients know that Costa Rica has a very strong and capable National Emergency Commission, which is a public, governmental, risk management and mitigation institution responsible for the actions taken during a national emergency. Thanks to them, thousands of communities were evacuated and people, both locals and tourists, stayed safe in shelters or other types of accommodation.
The areas most affected in Costa Rica were the North Caribbean coast and the northern communities of the Alajuela and Guanacaste provinces. Although some places are in a very bad shape after flash floods hit unexpectedly, others were only affected by loss of power for a couple of days. Currently, the country is pulling together, collecting food and clothing for those still in shelters and trying to restore the communities that were most affected.
Some travelers were affected by cancelled or diverted flights (like me), hotel relocation and/or cancelled tours. As of today most hotels and tours are operating normally. However, it is a good idea to check with your travel consultant in case any of the places you will be visiting were affected by the hurricane and be sure your itinerary is still good-to-go.
It is unfortunate what the country is going through and we would recommend and hope that you enjoy your vacation as planned. If you wish to show your support, I bet your hotel staff and/or your guides will be very happy to help you find the best way to do so, or you can follow this link and find the way that suits you the best: http://www.ticotimes.net/2016/11/25/donations-can-make-hurricane-otto-relief-costa-rica .
You may be interested to know that Andrew & Beth’s son, Matthew is currently living in Costa Rica and assisting with the relief efforts.
As mentioned before, safety is always our first priority. During these difficult times we ask for your understanding if any of your tours or if part of your itinerary was affected by hurricane damage. Please call us or send an email if you have any questions or concerns about your upcoming trip. We will be more than happy to help you in any way we can.