A tribute to expat John Koger

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

John Koger, the owner of A Safe Passage, passed away on Nov. 9 at the age of 61. The cause of death was a heart attack.  Koger had made Costa Rica his home for the past 20 years.  He often joked that Ticos became the happiest people in the world after he arrived, and he left a trail of smiles wherever he went.

A Safe Passage epitomized Koger’s passion for making it easier and safer for travelers to enjoy the country he loved.  Providing travel information and onward tickets was his way of making a difference for expats and for tourists throughout the world.  His focus on service was unparalleled, and he received hundreds of emails from grateful clients.

Against great odds, Koger also succeeded in constructing a bus shelter to keep Ticos and travelers out of the rain, he persuaded Costa Rica’s travel bureau (the ICT) to publish clear entry requirements, and he worked tirelessly to inform airlines that bus tickets are legitimate proof of onward travel.

Koger is survived by three children, twin daughters Amber and Nicole and a son, Bryant, two grandchildren, and fellow travelers around the world who became his friends.

Karon Garen
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Editor’s Note:  Koger also was a great help to A.M. Cost Rica readers in providing the facts on the land exit tax when it went into effect.

John Koger displayed this Costa Rican flag when he toured Europe.

John Koger displayed this Costa Rican flag when he toured Europe.

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