San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Tourist companies launching special offers for the long weekend

Special discounts on hotels, one-day tours and free extra activities are some of the incentives offered by Costa Rican tourism companies for the upcoming long holiday weekend.

Friday’s holiday (Columbus Day) was moved to Monday, according to a Labor Ministry decision.

On its website, the National Tourism Chamber (CANATUR) is offering a series of deals, including low rates on accommodation in beach and mountain hotels, special prices on outdoor activities such as canopy tours, rafting and safaris, among others. Promotions are available on the website:

CANATUR Assistant Director Tatiana Cascante said the strategy focuses on attracting local tourists.

But tourism entrepreneurs have complained in recent days that tourism figures released by the government are misleading. Last week, Tourism Minister Allan Flores said the annual number of tourists visiting Costa Rica is 2 million, but some business owners say the figure is much lower.

Boris Marchegiani, president of the Quepos Chamber of Tourism, told local Channel 7’s Telenoticias that the government data is taking into account people who enter the country for work. “Some of them do that several times a year, and are counted each time they enter,” he said.

Flores responded that official figures are reliable and only tourist visitors are being taken into account.

Contact L. Arias at

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