The data is compiled by reports of the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería (DGME) – immigration service – and analyzed by the ICT, which indicates an increase of 49.000 visitors or a 7.8% increase in the first three months of 2011 over the same period in 2010.
“This has been a great way to kick off the year,” said the ministro de Turismo Allan Flores. “We surpassed the world average, which according to the World Tourism Organization, was five percent in the first few months of 2011.”
The Daniel Oduber International Airport in Liberia, the regional airport located in the province of Guanacaste and within an hour of north Pacific coast beaches, hotels and resorts, registered a record 26.9% increase in visitor arrivals within the first three months of 2011.
Data from the DGME confirms that in January, the Liberia airport had 42 flights a week, six more than in 2010, representing a growth of 14%. February indicated similar results with 53 flights a week, 13 more than the same period last year, meaning an increase of 25%.
The United States remains Costa Rica largest and most important market, representing 54.2% of arrivals by air with more than 252,000 Americans traveling there during the first quarter of the year.
Costa Rica’s proximity to major hubs in the United States and the multitude of flight options makes it easy for travelers to vacation there.
San José is less than three hours away from Miami, a five-hour flight from New York, a four-hour flight from Dallas and a six-hour flight from Los Angeles.