Puerto Rico Tourism Hits Record in 2021

Puerto Rico tourism hit a new record in 2021, in a mark of the island’s ongoing economic reactivation and recovery from the turmoil of the global pandemic.

A photo of a beach in Puerto Rico, where tourism broke a new record in 2021
Tourism in Puerto Rico hit a new record in 2021

According to the Puerto Rico Tourism Company (PRTC) — a public agency that regulates and promotes tourism on the island — the first eight months of 2021 saw the highest figures on record for room tax collected during a similar period since 2008.

That included the highest monthly figure on record, with more than $11.1 million collected during July. Prior to this year, the previous monthly highest figure had been $7.06 million collected in July 2017. 

SEE ALSO: Company Formation in Puerto Rico: a 5-Step Guide

Room tax in Puerto Rico is applied to hotel, guesthouse, and other short-term rentals (defined as any rentals lasting less than 90 days), and is applied at a rate of 7% of the cost of the rental.

According to PRTC, the growth in Puerto Rico tourism seen in 2021 has been bolstered by a 24% increase in lodgings, with 4,306 registered on the island as of late-September 2021, compared to 3,471 registered in 2020.

“We can say that we have experienced one of the most fruitful stages in the history of tourism in Puerto Rico,” said Carlos Mercado Santiago, executive director of PRTC, who highlighted the participation of many different sectors, as well as the importance of both local and international tourism to the island’s recovery from the pandemic.

“All of this results in economic development for Puerto Rico,” he said. 

Puerto Rico tourism a strong investment opportunity

Tourism offers a good investment opportunity, with manufacturing, import/export, and real estate also major business opportunities in Puerto Rico.

The island registers considerably higher visitor numbers than many other Caribbean nations, thanks in part to strong cultural and economic connections with the United States, of which Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory. 

Puerto Rico tourism also benefits from the fact that Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, which serves capital San Juan, receives direct flights from multiple US cities, Madrid, Frankfurt, and a host of cities around Latin America and the Caribbean. 

Puerto Rico has been a US territory since 1898, and its residents have enjoyed US citizenship since 1917. The island has seen strong growth in recent decades, with gross domestic product (GDP) increasing exponentially since 1970.

Today Puerto Rico is one of the most prosperous markets in Latin America and the Caribbean, registering a gross national income (GNI) of $21,740 per capita in 2020. It also enjoys significantly lower rates of violent crime than other popular tourist destinations from the region, including Colombia, Jamaica, and Mexico.

These conditions add up to make Puerto Rico tourism a strong investment prospect, as evidenced by the record-breaking results seen in the sector this year. 

The opportunities offered by tourism also feed into a range of other benefits of doing business in Puerto Rico, which also include significant tax breaks, impressive infrastructure, and a prime location for trade.

A snapshot of the market in Puerto Rico

Biz Latin Hub can assist you in Latin America & the Caribbean

At Biz Latin Hub, our team of experienced corporate support specialists is available to help you enter the Puerto Rican market, whether you are seeking to take advantage of the opportunities on offer in Puerto Rico tourism, or any other sector.

We offer a comprehensive portfolio of back-office solutions, including company formation, accounting & taxation, legal services, and hiring & PEO, meaning that we can be your single point of contact for doing business in Puerto Rico, providing a tailored package of integrated services to suit every need.

With local teams in place around Latin America and the Caribbean, we also specialize in multi-jurisdiction market entry, and offer support in 18 markets around the region.

Contact us now to discuss how we can support your business.

Or learn more about our team and expert authors.

Key services offered by BLH including legal services, accounting & taxation, hiring & PEO, due diligence, tax advisory, and visa processing
Key services offered by Biz Latin Hub

The information provided here within should not be construed as formal guidance or advice. Please consult a professional for your specific situation. Information provided is for informative purposes only and may not capture all pertinent laws, standards, and best practices. The regulatory landscape is continually evolving; information mentioned may be outdated and/or could undergo changes. The interpretations presented are not official. Some sections are based on the interpretations or views of relevant authorities, but we cannot ensure that these perspectives will be supported in all professional settings.

About The Author

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share This

Share this post with a friend or colleague!