In a second effort in as many weeks to further open the country to tourism, the government of President Daniel Ortega recently announced that Nicaragua will no longer charge Costa Rican tourists a $25 tourism visa to enter the country.
Ortega announced the measure during a speech last weekend in which he and his wife, Rosario Murillo, called for responsible and dignified tourism to combat poverty in Nicaragua.
Where tourism advances, poverty recedes, said Murillo, quoting the World Tourism Organization.
The unilateral decision to lift the visa is the second initiative the Ortega government has taken in the past two weeks to facilitate tourism.
On March 13, Ortega signed a separate decree to eliminate all consular visa requirements to travel to Nicaragua, allowing tourists from around the world to get their visa at their port of entry and save themselves from trekking to the closest Nicaraguan consulate to process a visa request to visit here.
We are a country with open arms, Ortega said.
Meanwhile in Costa Rica, Foreign Minister Bruno Stagno told the daily La Nación on Monday that it would be very difficult for Costa Rica to adopt a similar measure for the benefit of Nicaraguans, but that the Immigration office would look into it.