Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Alternative Title

Factores e impactos en los ingresos del ecoturismo de las reservas privadas en Costa Rica


Grace Heusner



Download Full Text (239 KB)

Publication Date

May 2009


Tourism in Costa Rica represents a large piece of the country’s national revenue, but the exact funds private reserves obtain from this source has been insufficiently studied. The goal of this investigation was to determine reserves’ ecotourism revenue and factors impacting differences in income. Survey data was collected from 17 private reserves in Costa Rica to determine percentage of revenue derived from tourism, payments for environmental services (PES), and donations or other sources. In addition, the survey sought to identify factors that may explain differential revenues. An average of 88% of revenue came from ecotourism, 8%percent from donations, and 4% from governmental payments. There were significant correlations between marketing budget and revenue, as well as tourists per year on overall tourism revenue. However, size, distance from San José, and park admission fee had no significant correlation to tourist revenue, indicating that tourists visit reserves independently of these factors. Studies have hypothesized that ecotourism may not be an effective vehicle for conservation, and opinion results of the survey supported this belief. However, payments for environmental services may represent an economically viable way to balance the conflicts between tourism and conservation.


El turismo en Costa Rica representa una parte importante de los ingresos nacionales del país, pero los fondos exactos que las reservas privadas obtienen de esta fuente han sido poco estudiadas. El objetivo de esta investigación fue determinar los ingresos del ecoturismo en las reservas y los factores que influyen en las diferencias de los ingresos. Se colectaron encuestas en 17 reservas privadas en Costa Rica para determinar el porcentaje de los ingresos derivados del turismo, los pagos por servicios ambientales (PES), y las donaciones u otras fuentes.


Ecotourism, Revenue, Ecological reserves, CIEE Spring 2009

Palabras claves

Ecoturismo, Ingresos, Reservas ecológicas, CIEE Primavera 2009


15 pages

Geographic Location

Monteverde (Puntarenas, Costa Rica)

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute


English; Spanish

Media Type



Digital Only





Factors and impacts of ecotourism on revenue of private reserves in Costa Rica, May 2009



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