(QCOSTARICA) Safety is a pretty big concern for any traveller. For that, many can rely on the 2016 Global Peace Index, put together by the Institute for Economics and Peace, recently measured the safety and peacefulness of 163 countries according to “23 qualitative and quantitative indicators.”
The index scored each country on a 1 – 5 scale, one being the highest, taking into account indicators such as terrorism impact, perception of criminality, and political instability.
While Costa Rica did not make it in the top ten, it fared pretty well, in the 2016 report taking spot 33 with a score of 1.699. Tops is Iceland (sixth year in a row) with a near perfect score of 1.192, followed by Denmark with 1.246 and Austria at 1.278, rounding out the top three.
The 2026 reports says: Costa Rica in particular has no standing armed forces, although border disputes have occasionally arisen; while Panama had the greatest improvement in the score within the region and jumped 24 places in the global rankings due to a lower likelihood of violent demonstrations and political instability in 2015, which followed elections in 2014.
Costa Rica is also among the ten countries with the highest per capita illicit financial flows, in fifth place after Bahamas, Equatorial Guinea, Brunei and Trinidad and Tobago.
The reports indicates: by definition, those engaged in illicit financial or arms flows will not want their activity known. As such, there will be great difficulties in creating a measure that is direct and meaningful for this target. A measure which could potentially be used in the interim is the International Finance Corporation (IFC) indicator of illicit financial flows for 145 relevant countries. Whilst this measure is an estimate and cannot show the granularity required by the indicator, it does allow for prioritization of efforts.
Combined with its continued rank as the “happiest place in the world“, Costa Rica continues to be great place to visit and live.
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