Thursday 1 December 2022

[OP-ED] A New Tico Day Has Cometh

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1 December 2022 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – +It was not too many years ago that the number one criticism of Costa Rica journalism was the lack of numbers, the lack of cognitive study and the lack of empirical research. Now, a new Tico day has cometh and we are inundated with numbers, innuendos and pseudo conclusions of that some might well be true as well as many which are not. However, collectively all have the idea of being published as the ultimate objective making them publicly “correct”.

Remember, research, especially social research starts out with some a kind of hypothesis and to receive publicity; it must be made valid; at any cost.

At the university I promoted the most basic of hypothesis that is if you have a patient who is hyper active, violent or suicidal; giving that person (s) a deep sedative, that same sedated person will relax until reaching the next point of excitation (Stimulus). At which time, fear of injury or death is either reduced or eliminated altogether and when that happens the physical aggression will be far more severe as well as dangerous.

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In short, we tend to fear reprisal, and if not ….”We are afraid of law and its consequences.”

This was published in more than one reputable journal including Psychology Today and to me, it seems like a simple logic.

In Costa Rica for some reason we have what seems like a plethora of negative soothsayers, mostly by innuendo rather than taking a position and living with the results which are soon swept under the carpet and forgotten.

Ergo, everyone is an expert which might not be all that bad from a social stand point.

1. The coveted Association of Tourism (ICT) shows, over the year “…a marked decline in both (number) of tourists and the mega bucks they spend in Paradise. In 2011 the average stay was 12 nights and the money spent was $1,200 during that stay. Now, a few short years later, ICT is saying the average stay of a tourist is eight nights and the average expenditure is $800 while in country. (How convenient, still an expenditure of $100 per day.)

Hey! What is correct?

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2. In the same article it is suggested the housing bubble has burst. (“Well yeah it has!”)

3. Other than tourism, let’s take a look at something far more serious. The ease or lack of doing business here. Th English language proficiency is low, advertising is “low.” Out of a score of 100, we came in 48.5 placing Pura Vida 43rd, six places below its 2013’s rating.

4. At the very end of the list, out of 144 economies of the World Economic Forum, our country, came in last place in both infrastructure and bureaucracy. Even Venezuela scored higher and we know that is a mess.

5. Let’s talk about the all new advertising campaign with 22 Square and our government at a cost of $3.3 million. While I love the gentleness of sloths and the song “Wamba Ya”, it is a jingle and little more. Shame on the agency 22 Square.

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6. In attracting tourism, why are we target marketing only office workers, middle management who need a break? Whatever happened to the value of retirees, expats, investors, back-packers, our famous surfers, Afro Americans and females? “….they just sort of are expected to give into the wonderful, lovable sloth and hammock vacation instead of the less expensive shores of Mexico? We appeal to a hot, a market that intends to spend money on goods and services rather than on Tico type Valium. Para phrase: “Come do nothing, sit back, forget work and we Ticos will do it all for you, even rent a monkey so you can say at home ‘I saw” one.”

7. What happened to the promotion of Baby Boomers, some 80,000 gringos who do consider moving out of the U.S. and Canada for six months to an eternity? Have they now lost heir economic value or become market vapor?
Costa Rica is a unique if not a “Once Upon a Time” (Television series) that intends or pretends to be something it is not.

I want the young, middle aged surf group who live healthy and bring global recognition + money.

I want the baby boomer whose nest is now empty and in search for both a cheap and easy way to visit long lost relatives in Canada and the United States who live in Costa Rica.

I want the boomer investor who was once more sought after and more popular than the proverbial hamburger that just might pick up where Intel left off.

I want more tourist attractions to be reasonably priced and make economic sense to the valuable buyers of adventure, relaxation and excitement.

I want the “snowbird” tourist to come and stay six months in escape of the harsh northern winters. They not only spend money, they invest. (Just ask the chamber in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

Poor Costa Rica, we target only over worked mid-level management and have dismissed those who have, historically, made our country so very special.

The truth is with the U.S. in a racial/social war of its own and Mexico as a killing field, if Costa Rica cannot attract ALL sorts of races, nationalities and the diverse tourist; shame on us.

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Juan Sebastian Campos
An expat from the U.S., educator and writer in English and Spanish since 1978 with a doctorate in business administrations (DBA) from the United States and Germany. A feature writer for ABC News, Copley Press and the Tribune Group with emphasis on Central America.

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