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Tag-Archive for "Tourism Watch"

Costa Rica’s Unemployment Ruse Jun 17

san-jose-costa-ricaAccording to the latest numbers, 15,000 people lost their jobs in Costa Rica during the month of December 2008 . Business closings and reduced revenue due to lower international consumer spending are the main reasons. Simply listen to the latest newscast and you will hear about worldwide job loss and rising unemployment in the economic superpowers. Costa Rica depends mostly on tourism for its revenue but it has reached out in the past to attract manufacturers to augment that revenue. But that is not even a good hedge bet today, Sylvania announced it will be closing its plant in Pavas, leaving another 200 josefinos unemployed.

Unfortunately, business closings will not stop with the Sylvania plant. Leading economists are predicting the cliche “things are expected to get worse before they get better.”  Many in the international banking business say the economic downturn will last more than two years. Last year, Costa Rica’s unemployment level was near 5% and in 2009 is expected to rise to 6%.

In an thinly veiled attempt to reduce the economic downturn effects on job loss, UCCAEP, Costa Rica’s union of private businesses said it will be presenting a bill to congress called the “Law of Employment Protection in Moments of Crisis”. Their proposed law would present temporary changes to the more…

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Costa Rica Driving Laws Amended…Again! Jun 11

 costa-rica-driving-lawsA new law was signed yesterday by Costa Rican President Oscar Arias that will make big changes in the penalties on traffic violations. These traffic violations include drunk driving, speeding and driving without a valid license. Even forgetting to wear a seatbelt, holding a cell phone, or ignoring traffic lights carry a hefty fine.

On average, one person dies in a road accident in Costa Rica every day and so authorities hope that by bringing in this new law the accident statistics will be dramatically reduced. Oscar Arias commented on the laws stating “I know this law is harsh, but rather than get scared, we should thank law makers for passing it. We have let drivers get away with too much”.

With the new law in place, drunk drivers automatically lose their license for 2 years and could face imprisonment for up to 3 years. Cars driving over 150 mph will also face the same penalty. Other related laws restrict certain car modifications in an attempt to target the informal drag races that continue to go on in San Jose’s streets and have cost several lives.


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Costa Rica Honors 2,000,000 Visitor Jun 11

This Family of Seven Was Celebrated as the 2 Millionth Tourist to Costa Rica.

The Biedron family from New Jersey received a grand welcome to Costa Rica this Wednesday, Dec. 17, as they were chosen to represent the arrival of the 2 millionth tourist to Costa Rica. Mark and Gretchen Biedron, who will be traveling in the country with their five children aged 8 thru 20 for two weeks, were met by Minister of Tourism Carlos Benavides and a large group of press and interested onlookers.

This is the first year in the history of Costa Rica that the total number of arriving tourists will surpass 2 million, a number the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) expects will jump to 2.1 million before the close of 2008. ICT also estimated that the tourist industry will have generated .2 billion by the end of the year, 0 million more than last year which saw a total of 1.9 million tourists come to the country. more…

Category: Costa Rica News  | Tags: , , ,  | One Comment | 88 views
Tourism in Costa Rica Drops Jun 06

La Fortuna Was a Ghost Town Early this November

Costa Rica is one of the most popular tourist destinations for North Americans and is in the top 5 countries visited by this group. Many North Americans own property in Costa Rica as the flights are only between 2 to 5 hours in duration. However, over the past 12 months (from September 2007 through August 2008), Costa Rica received 10,000 less tourists from North America than the year before during a similar time period. The worst month this year for tourist entrances was this August, with 8,500 visitors less than last August.

The current economic situation in the U.S. has had a domino affect on Costa Rican tourist visits, especially as 54% of tourists are from the states. Carlos Ricardo Benavides, the Minister of Tourism, stated that the months of September and October this year were some of toughest in Costa Rica tourism history. more…

Category: Costa Rica News  | Tags: , , ,  | One Comment | 285 views
Is Playa Jaco Costa Rica Green? May 31

Six weeks ago, the canton de Garabito or Garabito County in which Jaco is located took delivery of close to 20 new white Toyota pickup trucks courtesy of the local developers. When the rest of the world is trying to conserve on fossil fuel consumption and when the Fuerza Publica cannot afford to pay for it own gasoline usage, Garabito’s employees and workers are guzzling fuel at record numbers.

Today, you can see the monster size pickups touring through town, towering over the smaller local more fuel efficient cars. Previously, it was the pretentious albeit only a handful who drove monter trucks in this paved road city. With the addition of 20 plus gas guzzling trucks, this will only add to the local pollution and one needs to ask themselves, why? What is the purpose of this? Who is going to pay for the enormous gasoline bills? When the Garabito Council claims it cannot afford to do this or that, they seem to have no problems accepting gifts like this. more…

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