Tourists who have been shocked by high taxi fares in foreign cities are in for a real jolt in Prague.

Some taxi drivers in the Czech Republic's capital city have electrically wired the upholstery of their cabs so that a push of a button will send a shock through the seat of a protesting passenger refusing to pay up, according to a report.Prague's cabbies, who are becoming known as the nastiest - if not the highest paid - in the world, are reportedly employing a variety of tactics to rip off travelers.

Besides the persuasive hot seat and run-of-the-mill overcharging, rigging of meters and taking the long and winding way around, some drivers have installed a switch that makes the meters run faster when the cab rides over cobblestones. City officials are said to be cracking down on the unscrupulous practices, but in the meantime, don't forget the tip.

Hotels in Costa Rica

Two new hotels, the Camino Real San Jose and the San Jose Hampton Inn, have recently opened in Costa Rica.

The Camino Real San Jose, an eight-acre resort about 10 minutes from downtown San Jose in the suburb of Escazu, opened in November. More information: (800)722-6466.

The San Jose Hampton Inn, a mile from the Santamaria Airport and 10 miles from downtown San Jose, opened this month. Smoking is prohibited in 75 of the hotel's 100 rooms. There is an outdoor pool.More information: (800) 426-7866.