Tourism Sustainability

Costa Rica has become a country recognized for the environmental strategies that are implemented throughout the Costa Rican territory.

In 1997, the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) created a sustainable development instrument whose purpose is to help balance tourism and the environment and thus maintain the productive capacity of the industry: the Certificate of Sustainable Tourism (CST)

“Sustainable tourism development must be seen as the balanced interaction between the appropriate use of our natural and cultural resources, the improvement of the quality of life of local communities, and the economic success of the activity; it also has to contribute to national development. Tourism sustainability is not only the response to demand, but it is an indispensable condition to compete successfully now and in the future “(Definition of Sustainable Tourism, CST 1997).

The CST is a process through which companies and organizations voluntarily analyze their operations looking for efficiency, productivity, quality, environmental impacts and customer satisfaction, which allows them to measure the level of sustainability of their operation and establish development models that enrich the community and culture, while making responsible use of resources and promoting their conservation.

Sustainability Policy

Costa Rica DMC understands the importance of developing sustainable tourism. Our commitment is to support best practices that are environmentally friendly that will help mitigate climate change, adapt and reduce the risk of endanger the environment.

Our policy is based on the following objectives:


Costa Rica DMC will establish policies and procedures to implement, document, maintain and improve our sustainability method.



  • Offer work opportunities that guarantee complete compliance to the labor laws of Costa Rica
  • Maintain good social, environmental and business relationships in all communities we work.
  • Prioritize the purchase process to utilize services and vendors in the locations where we operate the activities.
  • Involve as much as possible in the CRS projects all the local communities prioritizing the ones with higher needs.
  • Maintain constant training with our employees on the importance of a sustainability culture.
  • Promote our best practices on sustainability among our staff, service providers and clients.
  • Offer equity for activities available for people with disabilities having products, services and information available on accessible attractions.


  • Reduce, prevent and eliminate when possible our carbon footprint in our work places, create an environmental atmosphere in the locations where we do our touristic activities.
  • Constant reinforcement to our service providers of the importance on having sustainable polices in place.
  • Enforce the usage of service providers that share the same believes and the same sustainability polices as ours.
  • Constant training to our staff, guides, chuffers, on the importance of sustainability policies in the format of lectures or virtual webinars.
  • Inform our tourists of the importance of conservation and sustainability, species endanger of extinction, policies and efforts that that Costa Rica does to preserve nature. 


  • Reinforce between all parties involved the best practices for responsible, healthy practices in tourism.
  • Actively support all the efforts done against human trafficking and child sexual exploitation. It is prohibited to hire children for any work consider service.
  • We actively support the “Good Conduct Protocol for Protection for Children and Adolescents against Sexual Exploitation” so it is empowered in all touristic activities, staff, clients and service providers.
  • We do not support or encourage child work.


  • Work towards the best economic benefits for the local towns, their wellbeing. Work towards improvement for the local workers conditions and access to the tourism industry.
  • Captivate the market share that shares the same vision on sustainable tourism.
  • Promote and highlight historical and archeological heritage, local culture and traditions to create economic funds that benefits most of the local population.
  • Encourage fair payment for everyone who participates in touristic activities.
  • Offer tourist memorable experiences with a significant local connection with the locals that at the end they leave with a better comprehension of the cultural, social and environmental aspects.

Accessible tourism policy

Costa Rica DMC is committed to providing equal opportunities in tourism activities for people with disabilities. As experts in the destination, we know our suppliers, their infrastructure, services and products, and therefore we guide and guide our clients according to the specific need of people with disabilities. We have initiated a strategic alliance with the Costa Rican Accessible Tourism Network that leads the Dona Tapa project, which collects all kinds of plastic and plastic caps # 2, # 4 and # 5 to transform them through an industrial process into 100% recycled plastic wood . This wood is used to manufacture innovative products such as retractable walkways and amphibious chairs that support tourism for people with disabilities.

Policy of exploitation of vulnerable groups

In Costa Rica, DMC rejects the commercial sexual exploitation of girls, boys and adolescents in Costa Rica and in the world, in general and in particular in its modality associated with travel and tourism, as it is a conduct that violates the fundamental rights of these people and which is completely contrary to the intrinsic objectives of tourist activity, which are to promote peace, human rights, mutual understanding, respect for all peoples and cultures, and sustainable development. We denounce and condemn those who use the tourist activity and the facilities and services it offers to promote, facilitate or tolerate the occurrence of commercial sexual exploitation of children and adolescents.

Policy on the commercialization of indigenous artifacts

In Costa Rica DMC, we have zero tolerance in the commercialization or exhibition of historical and archaeological artifacts and we denounce those who incur these practices.

Hiring Policy

Costa Rica DMC favors the purchase of products and the contracting of services to those suppliers who share the vision of contributing to sustainable development in the provision of tourism services in the country. We favor, support and promote certified suppliers who follow sustainable practices.

Water Policy

In Costa Rica DMC, aware of the need to protect the vital resource for the maintenance and conservation of any type of life on planet earth, be they humans, plants or animals, we are committed to:

  • Make rational use of water, both in our office and in the development of our tourist activities.
  • Encourage our clients to make a rational consumption of water during their stay.
  • Maintain a monthly water consumption monitoring and control plan in our office.
  • Develop a preventive maintenance program in our office.
  • Improve our vehicle washing routine.
  • Carry out awareness programs among our collaborators and suppliers regarding the rational and efficient use of water.
  • Report sources of water contamination in host communities.

Community development programs

Costa Rica DMC organizes, promotes and executes community development programs among local communities that include infrastructure, education, health, environment and climate change. Through donations and volunteering between internal and external actors.

Gender equity and empowerment of women and girls

Costa Rica DMC promotes gender equity in its operations, offering equal work and development opportunities for women, both internally, with 58% of its workforce being women. We hire entrepreneurial women for our events who work as florists, dancers, musicians, singers, decorators, mostly from the local community. We have started an alliance with the “Soy Niña” Program, a non-profit organization that seeks to empower girls who live in areas of psychosocial risk, working on the prevention of unwanted pregnancies and the prevention of violence, supporting the fragmentation of cycles of poverty and empowers girls so that they can build a life project away from risky situations.

Cultural Heritage

Costa Rica DMC respects and protects local properties and sites that are historically, archeologically, culturally or spiritually important and does not prevent local residents from accessing them.

Support for local culture

At Costa Rica DMC we value and incorporate authentic elements of traditional and contemporary local culture in our operations, design, decoration, gastronomy or markets, respecting the intellectual property rights of local communities. We promote and support Costa Rican artists, artisans and entrepreneurs, who incorporate elements of local culture in their products and services.

Policy on prohibited or threatened species

In Costa Rica DMC we do not capture, keep in captivity, manipulate, commercialize or consume species of flora and fauna with legal protection, in danger of extension or threatened, and we denounce and condemn those who do so.

Action plan against climate change

Efficient use of water

  • Post information with the correct form of hand washing in the hand washing stations of our offices.
  • Use a water filter for the consumption of employees and visitors.
  • Wash vehicles with a bucket to reduce water consumption.
  • Use of biodegradable and environmentally friendly products.
  • Reduce the consumption of sanitary services, installing water bottles inside the catchment tank.

Efficient use of paper

  • Using non-cellulosic printer paper
  • Using recycled paper for printing
  • Shred reused paper and send it to the recycling center.
  • Implementation of digital platforms, in order to avoid printing information documents.
  • Exclusive use of inkjet printers
  • Awareness campaigns among employees about the use of paper.
  • Encourage the use of digital documents

Efficient use of energy

  • Use of led lights in offices
  • Use of efficient computer equipment in all jobs that do not require frequent loads.
  • Preventive maintenance of air conditioning.
  • Constant awareness campaigns for the proper use of energy:
    • Turn off the air conditioning when the office is alone.
    • Unplug all electrical appliances daily
    • Reminders on the dampers

Solid waste management

  • Control of waste generated in our offices.
  • Permanent ecological point in the office for the separation, classification, storage, reuse or recycling of waste.
  • Delivery of recyclable waste to a collection center.
  • Campaigns to raise awareness of good practices for employees.
  • Participation in the E-Coins Program.

Noise pollution mitigation:

  • Pay attention to the noises we make and respect the right of others to enjoy a comfortable sound environment.
  • Use the vehicle’s horn only to prevent accidents.
  • Avoid sudden accelerations and the use of free exhausts.
  • Use short duration alarms.
  • Listen to music at a level that does not cause discomfort to others.
  • Moderate cell phone ringtones.
  • Speak with a moderate volume of voice.
  • Move chairs, tables or other furniture without making noise.
  • Close the doors without knocking.
  • Limit the time of use of headphones, use them at a moderate level and try not to use them in noisy environments or means of transport.

Mitigation of the impact on the ozone layer

  • Eliminate the purchase and subsequent consumption of aerosols or sprays in whose composition chlorofluorocarbon gases (CFC) intervene.
  • Avoid using fire extinguishers that contain halons, a very aggressive substance for the ozone layer.
  • Perform periodic preventative maintenance on office and automobile air conditioners.
  • Use of energy saving light bulbs.
  • Carpooling promotion campaigns.

Protection, restoration and promotion of the sustainable use of ecosystems:

  • We restore and protect the ecosystems affected by our operation and promote their sustainable use.
  • We create alliances with national parks and biological reserves for the restoration of ecosystems through reforestation campaigns with our collaborators.
  • We avoid the use of exotic and invasive species in our operations and promote the use of native species in our offices.
  • We do not acquire, keep in captivity, reproduce, consume, display, interact with, sell or trade with wild species
Efficient use of paper
Tips for saving water
Use and protection of resources
Sustainable Best Practices
Sustainable Best Practices

Tourist Handbook