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Costa Rica launches Pura Vida Pledge


Flying the flag for sustainable travel, Costa Rica has revealed a new way agents can commit to selling responsible holidays


With 28% of its landmass protected, 29 national parks, reserves and wildlife refuges, and 6.5% of the world’s biodiversity calling the country home, it’s no surprise that Costa Rica was presented with a Champion of the Earth award by the United Nations in 2019. The country was selected for the environmental accolade thanks to its role in the protection of nature and its commitment to combatting climate change, proven by the fact the percentage of biodiversity in the destination increased by 1.5% last year.

Coronavirus hub stamp

This makes Costa Rica one of the leading destinations when it comes to sustainable travel. Eco-conscious visitors flock from around the world to admire the country’s unspoiled flora and fauna in its rainforests and on its coasts, and can enjoy their holidays safe in the knowledge that their nature-based adventures are not to the detriment of the environment.

Pura Vida Pledge

Essential information

  • Costa Rica is a year-round destination with a warm tropical climate. Typically the UK winter has been the high season, but recommending when to visit depending on which wildlife your client wants to see is recommended.
  • British Airways offers a direct flight to San Jose from Gatwick.
  • Despite its small size, Costa Rica proudly shelters 6.5% of the existing biodiversity in the world – up 1.5% on 2019.
  • Costa Rica is a pioneer of ecotourism, with a goal for carbon neutrality by 2050. Currently, 99% of the country’s energy comes from renewable sources.

To help promote sustainable travel to Costa Rica and educate the travel trade on what is considered responsible tourism, the tourist board has launched the Pura Vida Pledge on the Pura Vida University agent training programme. This is a section of the portal that provides a list of tourism partners preferred by the tourist board for their sustainable efforts, so by using one of the hotels or operators featured when curating a client’s itinerary agents can make their pledge to promote responsible travel.


The phrase “pura vida”, which literally translates to “pure life”, can be heard throughout Costa Rica as a greeting or expression of happiness, and epitomises the Costa Rican culture. This energy and positivity is well worth protecting, so soon to be added to the Pura Vida Pledge are voluntourism recommendations to help support the local communities as they begin to emerge from the coronavirus crisis – another way in which clients can do their bit to make travel more sustainable.


Plus, “taking the pledge” by using these preferred partners means agents will have access to rewards for their own personal use. To access these benefits agents must have completed the Pura Vida University training course.


The Costa Rica Tourism Board is also offering agents the chance to win a soft sloth toy or toucan teddy by completing the course by 30 June 2020.

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