What can happen to a tourist here who does not pay attention to basic security precautions? That’s the premise of a YouTube video produced by the U.S. Embassy here that seeks to promote vigilance.
The answer is that the tourist could end up in the consular section of the embassy one morning wearing one sandal and stripped of all possessions.
Johnathan Roy, a vice consul, has the only speaking role. He’s a friendly Gringo giving safety tips to a forlorn man who has been victimized even before he left the airport. That is where he lost his luggage to a thief, according to the video.
The man’s visit goes downhill from there.
He meets pretty girls in a bar, and when he wakes up, his backpack is gone. At the beach he leaves his car keys on the sand along with his few remaining possessions. That’s where he loses a sandal as well as the car.
Roy said the video was a joint effort between the Consulate staff and the Public Affairs Office. Actors were embassy staffers.
The Consulate is the part of the embassy that provides new identification to U.S. citizens who have had their passports lost or stolen. So nearly every weekday morning there are real tourists there with their tales of woe. A.M. Costa Rica reported last month that the Consulate has logged a decline in stolen U.S. passports. Still there were 417 passports stolen through May, the Consulate said.