The Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, took advantage of the Christmas holidays to come to surf in Costa Rica, a passion of his.
The Canadian Prime Minister is accompanied by the President-elect of Uruguay, Luis Lacalle, who is also a fan of the waves.
According to the Toronto Sun, Trudeau’s public calendar says “personal”.
According to the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería (DGME) – immigration – the Canadian PM checked-in to Costa Rica at 5:30 pm on Firday, December 20.
“We have to hope that it means it’s a vacation and that we won’t see Trudeau and his family parading around the country in traditional Costa Rican garb. I can see it now, the PM wandering the streets with a white linen shirt open almost to his belly button, a red handkerchief tied around his neck. I’m sure he’s learned some choice Spanish phrases to make sure he doesn’t embarrass us,” wrote Brian Lilley.
As much as the Prime Minister probably wants to have a carefree vacation, the controversy of a previous tropical getaway still looms.
In 2016, Justin Trudeau spent time at a Bahamas resort on an island owned by the Aga Khan. The entire trip (which also took place during the Christmas break) was estimated to have cost over CA$215,000. It also came under fire for being a possible ethics violation in regards to Canadian lobbying rules.
The RCMP reportedly spent CA$56,000 during the vacation, with part of that amount being used for jet ski rentals.
Despite the fact that the Prime Minister has only just arrived in Costa Rica, there are already a number of tweets criticizing his decision to go on vacation.
Prime Minister Trudeau off to Costa Rica for what one assumes is vacation given the “personal” designation pic.twitter.com/Pxs3lVIECP
— Mercedes Stephenson (@MercedesGlobal) December 20, 2019
“The laziest prime minister in memory has already left for his extended Christmas vacation. To Costa Rica, by private jet — because it’s a climate emergency. While he’s making sand castles, maybe Trump can figure out the Chinese hostages thing for him,” wrote Rebel News founder Ezra Levant. While many Canadians struggle to make ends meet his Royal Highnass (sic) Trudeau will frolic on a beach in Costa Rica. Money is no problem when you are born with a silver spoon in your mouth and can travel using taxpayer dollars,” wrote @SirJohn9.
While many Canadians struggle to make ends meet his Royal Highnass Trudeau will frolic on a beach in Costa Rica. Money is no problem when you are born with a silver spoon in your mouth and can travel using taxpayer dollars.
— A Calgarian (@SirJohn9) December 19, 2019
Canada is slipping into a recession and Justin Trudeau is heading to Costa Rica for holidays ! Who voted for this that waffle ?
— Luke Fidler???????? (@lucky348) December 20, 2019
Other Twitter users called Justin Trudeau a hypocrite for flying to Costa Rica while advocating for action on climate change.
“Sorry, Trudeau is unavailable for comment. You’ll find him in Costa Rica and I’m sure he paddled there because we are in a climate crisis,” wrote @bellis1994.
The PM’s office spokeswoman, Eleanore Catenaro, explained that “the prime minister is enjoying personal time in Costa Rica with his family for the holidays.”
She did not want to specify how long the Trudeau family will be in Costa Rica or which beach/resort he and his family will be visiting.
Trudeau, son of who was also Prime Minister of Canada Pierre Trudeau, has been married since 2005 to Sophie Grégoire, with whom he has three children: Xavier James, 12; Ella-Grace Margaret, 10, and Hadrien Grégoire, 5.
Popular destination among Canadians
Costa Rica is a popular destination to spend winter vacations for many Canadians, including prominent politicians.
According to figures from the Canadian Government, about 10,000 Canadians reside in Costa Rica and about 250,000 Canadians visit the country yearly.
The prime minister of the province of Manitoba, Brian Pallister, spends long periods every year in Costa Rica, where he owns several properties, including a mansion in the beach town of Tamarindo.
Pallister’s stays in Costa Rica have caused controversy in Canada. The head of the Government of Manitoba, a province where winter temperatures easily reach -30 degrees Celsius, was criticized by the opposition for spending time in Costa Rica.