- ICT and companies from the country’s private sector will attend the Vakantierbus tourism fair - the largest in the Netherlands - on January 9-13 in the city of Utrecht.
- The Dutch market is one of the main European tourist-sending countries for Costa Rica. Over 30,000 visits to the country by Dutch citizens were recorded in 2018, representing a growth of over 8% compared to the previous period
Starting this Wednesday, Costa Rica will be showcasing the most outstanding aspects of its ample and diverse tourism offerings at the five-day Vakantierbus international trade fair. Highlights will include sun, beaches, adventure, a closeness with nature, “Wellness Pura Vida” lifestyle offerings and meeting tourism. Vakantierbus is one of the largest trade fairs in the European country, which is itself one of the continent’s largest markets.
The fair is aimed at the general public and is held in the city of Utrecht on January 9-13. It is the first fair of the year in which the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT) will be participating, alongside representatives from the country’s private sector. This attendance is part of the ICT’s program of international trade fairs.
The Costa Rican stand will occupy a space of 100 square meters and boasts outstanding decorations that highlight the essence of Costa Rica using a series of giant photographs and large screens, which show attendees audiovisual representations of Costa Rica’s unmissable attractions and activities. In addition, the trade fair includes negotiation tables and customer service areas.
According to Ireth Rodríguez, Head of Promotion at ICT, participating in Vakantierbus will kick off the international trade fairs program for the year 2019.
“It is vitally important for the Costa Rican Tourism Board to start off the annual plan for participating in international trade fairs on the right foot with this tourism and travel fair in the Netherlands. This is one of the largest European tourist-sending markets”, Rodríguez said.
The promotions director noted that Costa Rica registered over 30,000 tourist arrivals from the Netherlands in the year 2018, a figure that represents an increase of over 8% over the previous period of 2017. She further emphasized the direct connection between San José and Amsterdam currently being operated by KLM, as well as the increase in direct flights to Europe.
ICT’s tourist profile for Dutch visitors indicates that their main reasons for visiting Costa Rica are to enjoy the country’s beaches, engaging in open-air activities such as nature hikes, hanging bridges and ziplining, observing flora and fauna, visiting volcanoes and visiting hot springs, among others.
Rodríguez indicated that participation in international trade fairs is one of the most important actions for the institution in terms of raising the profile of Costa Rica as a tourist destination. “Trade fairs allow us to display Costa Rica and its variety of attractions and activities on offer to tourists from various geographies. Furthermore, it allows us to secure commercial agreements by approaching strategic partners such as airlines and tour operators, while allowing for a negotiation platform for the businesses that come along with us.
ICT is projected to participate in at least 20 of the most prominent trade fairs, with the objective of contributing to the promotion and positioning of Costa Rica. The main tourist-sending markets in North America, South America and Europe have been chosen to showcase the country. The program includes participation in trade fairs for the general public, those aimed at specialized tourism professionals, meeting tourism and others.
Costa Rica will be participating in a number of upcoming international trade fairs in January and early February, including FITUR in Spain, the New York Times Travel Show in the United States, and FESPO in Switzerland.