When you travel, one of the easiest and most meaningful things you can do is meet the locals. To the best of your ability – no matter what the language barriers – strike up a conversation. Find out their story, their culture, their way of life.
During our last trip to Costa Rica to film our debut documentary, called 2.5%, we befriended several of the locals and talked to them about how tourism has affected their lives. Tourism is a US$2-billion-per-year industry and employs 13 percent of the nation’s population; nearly every Tico (as Costa Ricans like to call themselves) is directly or indirectly impacted by this industry.
Didier Acevedo, a tour guide based in Guanacaste, spoke to us about some of the effects of the tourism industry in Tamarindo, a famous beach that is one of the country’s most popular tourist cities. Though tourism has undoubtedly brought many economic benefits, Acevedo spoke also of an increase in drugs and prostitution, escalating land prices, as well as not being able to afford eating in local restaurants.
IMPORTANT: The video clip above is part of iSeeiTravel’s debut documentary project, called 2.5%. Visit them for more information and to support their fundraising campaign to promote conscious travel in Costa Rica.