Tourism Generated US$228 Billion In The Last Decade

Number triples banana exports; more than the combined income of banana, pineapple and medical devices


Tourism has become the great machine for obtaining dollars for the Costa Rican economy, and the data supports the claim.

In the last ten years, the tourism industry generated US$28 billion dollars and with the exception of 2009, due the consequences of the global crisis, the growth was almost 10% per year.



To put this in perspective, between 2008 and 2017, the banana, the star of the country, accumulated sales of only US$8.3 billion, the pineapple, US$7.6 billion, while medical devices US$4.5 billion, according to Procomer and the Central Bank.

The year with the greatest generation of the U.S. dollar from tourism was 2016, with $3.7 billion, the lowest or “slump” in 2009 with only $2 billion generated.

In the ten years, a total of 23.9 million visitors arrived in Costa Rica, spending an average of US$1,200 dollars each, according to numbers by the Tourism Board, the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo (ICT).

Americans made up the bulk of the tourist arrivals with 40%, tourism from the isthmus (Central America0 accounted for 29% of the arrivals,  Europeans 14%, South Amerians 6% and the rest, 12% from others.

The data of foreign currency generated includes numbers to the third quarter of 2017 and tourist arrivals to November 2017.