Most scenarios indicate that people in developing countries are more vulnerable and less capable of adapting to climate change. Since our public understanding of risk toward climate change in developing countries is limited, this article presents results from Costa Rica and Nicaragua, two countries which are socio-economically distinct, but which are expected to suffer similar extreme weather events. From October of 2008 until May 2010, a total of 1,047 respondents were surveyed in cities of both countries. The main results indicate that climate change is a widely known concept but other notions such as “carbon footprint” are foreign to most respondents. Despite the general concern with its negative consequences, respondents’ foremost concern is linked to their socioeconomic situation, and how it will be impacted by climate change in such aspects as poverty and social security. The results presented here contribute to advance national and international policies aiming to support mitigation or adaptation strategies in developing countries.