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New Commitment in Costa Rica to Combat Overtourism

Date: July 10, 2024 | By: Ashish Sanghrajka | Category: Travel Blog

Community Conscious Travel


Big Five Launches New Commitment in Costa Rica to Combat Overtourism
Company launches new programs and aligns with WTTC’s Community Conscious Travel Campaign


Big Five Tours & Expeditions (Big Five), a distinguished member of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) is pleased to announce new Costa Rica Programs and its latest initiative in Costa Rica aimed at combating overtourism through the adoption of the WTTC’s Community Conscious Travel global campaign. With decades of experience in sustainable tourism, Big Five is renowned for its innovative approach to preserving cultural heritage and supporting local economies, and this new focus in Costa Rica builds on Big Five’s successes in Kenya, Colombia, Sri Lanka, Peru, and many other places.

Through its newly launched programs in Costa Rica, such as those featured in their signature “Pura Vida Family Touring” experience, Big Five is committed to promoting responsible tourism practices. These initiatives are designed not only to alleviate the pressures of overcrowding in popular tourist destinations but also to introduce travelers to the lesser-known, authentic charms of Costa Rica.

The WTTC’s Community Conscious Travel campaign serves as a guiding principle for Big Five’s efforts, emphasizing three pillars:

  • Experience: Big Five educates travelers on the benefits of embracing a more authentic travel experience in Costa Rica. Encouraging visits during the shoulder seasons, such as September, allows travelers to enjoy quieter periods with reduced environmental impact and deeper cultural immersion.
  • Impact: Recognizing the significant social impact of responsible Travel & Tourism, Big Five’s programs in Costa Rica focus on fostering meaningful connections with indigenous communities such as the Bribri, Malekus, and Borucas. These initiatives are pivotal in preserving cultural heritage and supporting local livelihoods.
  • Action: In collaboration with Costa Rica’s tourism authorities and local stakeholders, Big Five advocates for a balanced tourism narrative that showcases the country’s diverse offerings beyond traditional attractions. This approach ensures fair economic opportunities for all involved.

“I am always inspired by industry leaders who commit to preserving the cultural heritage of a country through responsible tourism,” said Ashish Sanghrajka, President of Big Five Tours & Expeditions. “I am so proud, as a regional WTTC member, to see the new Community Conscious Travel campaign started by someone I admire, Andrea Grisdale of IC Bellagio. Her initiative in Italy, combined with the WTTC global campaign, offers a roadmap to changing the narrative in Costa Rica. Fair Market prices are a must to allow livelihoods to not only be protected but to thrive through socially responsible tourism. Overtourism and commoditization only make the current challenging economy in Costa Rica worse. The indigenous communities in Costa Rica must have a seat at the table. Travel and tourism globally make up 1 in 10 jobs and, in some countries, 1 in 6. Those jobs must reach the communities who rightfully belong in the conversation, so tourism done right may protect their cultural heritage.”

Amid Costa Rica’s economic challenges exacerbated by fluctuating currencies and tourism-related job losses, initiatives like Big Five’s are pivotal in fostering sustainable tourism practices that benefit both travelers and locals alike.


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