Costa Rica: Tourist Arrivals Fall 68% in 2020

Due to the outbreak of covid-19 worldwide and restrictions on passenger transportation, only 1.01 million visitors arrived in the country during 2020, 68% less than what was reported in 2019, when 3.14 million tourists arrived.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Although the fall in tourist arrivals was generally resounding, during the last months of 2020 a more favorable behavior was reported.

See "Tourism and Travel: Consumer Interests and Preferences"

According to a report by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT), with the return of 20 airlines from the main tourist issuing markets and the announcement of new routes at the end of the period, December registered the entry of 71 thousand tourists by air, almost doubling the visitation registered in November when 36 thousand were reported, according to data from the General Directorate of Immigration and Foreigners.

The document states that "... the data for the month of December reported a visit by air of 52,027 tourists from North America, specifically from the United States (45,641) and Canada (4,450), which historically have been the main issuing markets.

Gustavo J Segura, Minister of Tourism, said that "... the challenge of regaining the confidence of international tourists who still do not feel confident about traveling by air or leaving their homes. This challenge is conditioned by elements that are out of our control such as new waves of SARS-CoV-2 in the markets of origin, virus mutations, restrictions in issuing markets (e.g. Europe), among others. Costa Rica must do everything in its power to take advantage of what it can control, such as maintaining a safe opening.
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More on this topic

Tourism: Falling Revenues and Forecasts

May 2021

After foreign exchange revenues from tourism in Costa Rica fell from $4 billion to $1.343 billion between 2019 and 2020 due to the closure of borders and airports, it is projected that the sector will remain in the red during 2021.

March 2020, when most countries began to register Covid-19 cases, was the month in which revenues began to fall.

More American Tourists Arriving in Costa Rica

December 2020

Between October and November, the number of visitors from the US quadrupled, from 6,000 to 24,000, a rise reported in the context of the economic reopening and the reactivation of commercial flights.

The 24,606 Americans who arrived in the country during November, represent a little more than a quarter of the visits from the US registered in the same month of 2019, informed the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT).

Health Tourism: Forecasts for Revival

April 2020

Businessmen in Guatemala estimate that patients who visit the country with the aim of buying medical treatment will take between 9 months and a year to regain confidence in making the trip.

The sector is practically paralyzed, since due to the covid-19 outbreak worldwide, several countries have decided to close their borders and air terminals, and airlines are keeping their units on the ground.

Tourist Spending Down 18%

September 2018

Between the first and second quarters of the year, the average daily per capita expenditure made by tourists who arrived in Nicaragua fell from $45.7 to $37.7.

From a report by the Central Bank of Nicaragua:

September 19, 2018. The average daily per capita expenditure made by incoming tourists was 37.7 dollars in the second quarter of the year and registered a decrease of 17.5 percent compared to the previous quarter, highlighting spending by tourists from other regions and North America, however, due to the affluence of tourists who visited the country, spending by tourists from Central America and North America has greater relevance. Year-on-year, this indicator reflected a decrease of 17.3 percent 

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