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Top Destination In South America: Brazil? Peru?  
User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 1207 times:

http://www.cronista.com/negocios/Por...eros-que-Brasil-20110801-0010.html

In 10 years Argentina has more than doubled is tourist draw and surpassed Brazil. Now it is 2nd in Latin America behind Mexico, a powerhouse of world tourism, whom is has significantly caught up with in terms of long-stay tourists. Brazil and Mexico have flatlined in tourist entries in the last decade. Back in 2000, Mexico had 7 million ''long-stay''' tourists (18 million total, but 11 million where so-called ''border trips'' between Mexico-USA by Americans and Mexicans in the USA), Brazil 5.5 million, Argentina had 2 million. In 2010, Mexico had 8.7 million (20 million with border trips), Argentina 5.3 million, Brazil 5.1.

Argentina has developed destination-event tourism with very good promotional programs. Buenos Aires has regained a reputation as a cosmopolitan world capital after two lost decades in the 80s/90s, with great shopping, dining, and cultural life. It is a very attractive as a great location for college exchange due to it's nightlife and theater, and also become a major gay-friendly destination.

But other areas have emerged, Mendoza growing into a major wine tourism region: the province alone surpassed one million tourists for thre first time ever. Iguazu Falls has finally taken its place as the great waterfalls of the world. The northwest have become a new major draw to experience native South American culture, contrasting european central-south Argentina. Ski resorts have also dramatically increased foreign tourism thanks to major improvement programs. Patagonia and the Glacier region are the premier destination of tourist from overseas countries. And Ushuaia has become the gateway to Antarctica. Even unconventional destinations like the Argentine Riviera has gained ground to the Uruguayan beaches, thanks to many towns along the coast developing unique attractions.

Amazing how we can outdraw such great countries like Brazil and an amazing historical place like Peru!


My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5618 posts, RR: 32
Reply 1, posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 16 hours ago) and read 1191 times:

Quoting Derico (Thread starter):
Amazing how we can outdraw such great countries like Brazil and an amazing historical place like Peru!

Hmmmm . . . You out to rattle your neighbours Derico? Latin America is a wonderful holiday destination and it would be hard to pick a favourite. Some places have more attrations than others, obviously, but other factors come into play: value for money for one. When the Argentinian peso was pegged to the dollar it wasn't such a tourist-friendly destination. However, it's great to see the country doing so well, and its success is long overdue!


User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Reply 2, posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 1176 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 1):
mmmm . . . You out to rattle your neighbours Derico? Latin America is a wonderful holiday destination and it would be hard to pick a favourite. Some places have more attrations than others, obviously, but other factors come into play: value for money for one. When the Argentinian peso was pegged to the dollar it wasn't such a tourist-friendly destination. However, it's great to see the country doing so well, and its success is long overdue!

What did I say that was bad about anyone else? I actually think it's surprising given how big Brazil is and the amazing archeological and colonial heritage of Peru that Argentina, which doesn't have anything unique in particular (just a huge variety of climates and tourist-friendly cities), has managed to double its tourism entry. No one is comparing what is better to visit, just evaluating the numbers, I made no comments about any other place. I mean come on, why would anyone get rattled?

As we near 2012, one can hardly say this decade long trend is because Argentina is cheap today. Yes, the peso is stuck at 4 to 1 US dollar because the government likes to keep it down by printing. But what shows up as currency appreciation in the other countries of Latin America (whos currencies have all risen so you get less of it, making the stay more expensive), in Argentina it shows up in domestic inflation.

If in 2008 you got 3.7 pesos for 1 US dollar and today 4 for ever dollar, you can exchange 1000 dollars and get 4000 pesos today, which may sound good compared to other countries. But guess what, since 2008 internal prices are 50% higher. While internal salaries have somewhat kept up with that (unless you work in the informal economy), for you as a foreign visitor your salary has probably stayed the same. So those 4000 pesos get you a lot less, which in the end is the same as if the peso was at 2.5 today. It's certainly not cheaper than other countries in the region. There are some fundamentals under the sustained rise.

I think 10 million tourists should be the goal for 2020, incredibly ambitious, but with good policy and going out to Asia to attract the growing middle class there, who knows.



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User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Reply 3, posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 1176 times:

Btw, I would think in the next few years Brazil would retake the spot given the World Cup and Olympics coming up.

[Edited 2011-08-08 15:16:22]


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User currently offlineMortyman From Norway, joined Aug 2006, 3805 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 1153 times:

Ecuador is also a wonderful country. It has jungle, the Andes mountains with alot of volcanos, the Pacific coast, the Galapagos islands etc. It is also one of the safest countries in South America and is small enough to get around in a few weeks. Not the same amount of tourists though ... But highly recomendable

User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Reply 5, posted (2 years 11 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 1151 times:

Quoting Mortyman (Reply 5):
Ecuador is also a wonderful country. It has jungle, the Andes mountains with alot of volcanos, the Pacific coast, the Galapagos islands etc. It is also one of the safest countries in South America and is small enough to get around in a few weeks. Not the same amount of tourists though ... But highly recomendable

I have heard Ecuador is a very enjoyable country, like a best kept secret of the continent.



My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5618 posts, RR: 32
Reply 6, posted (2 years 11 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 1103 times:

Quoting Derico (Reply 2):

What did I say that was bad about anyone else?

Sorry if I may have jumped to conclusions a little quickly there Derico, but it seems I may have read your post wrong.

We are usually familiar with inter-nation rivalries close to home and it can be hard to get a handle on how well (or how badly) countries far from home get along, although it's pretty much the norm that direct neighbours will have at least some issues with each other, to a greater or lesser degree. So we Europeans can be at a loss when dealing with this sort of thing in South America, although I did get a brief insight not so long ago. I have an Uruguayan friend living here and have known him for over five years. He has a great personality, is smart and fits very well into life here, so I usually invite him to any parties or dinners I'm hosting. I got to know a Brazilian, also living here, more recently, who is also friendly and chatty. So, thinking I was doing the right thing, I invited him to a Sunday lunch along with my closest friends, including Robert, the Uruguayan. On the day, Robert was on his way and texted, asking me who else was invited. I listed all the people he knew, and added the Brazilian guy's name. One of the reasons I'd invited him was because Robert would be there, and I assumed they'd be interested in meeting each other, both being from the same part of the world and the only non-Irish people in the house. I can't remember Robert's reply, but it was swift, and very much to the point. He wasn't happy, and added that he didn't like Brazilians (followed by an exclamation mark), which I thought was QUITE a sweeping statement. There was nothing I could do at that stage, but I did observe their behaviour, and both of them ignored each other completely (after the initial introductions) until halfway through the meal when, during a gap in the conversation, Thiago quietly asked Robert if he was from Montivideo. Robert said no, named the town he came from, probably added another sentence, and that was the sum total of the conversation between the two of them. I had, and still have, no idea of relations between Brazil and Uruguay, but assumed thereafter that they're probably not great. Needless to say, that was the last time I invited the two of them to the same party.

[Edited 2011-08-09 11:59:35]

User currently onlinePPVRA From Brazil, joined Nov 2004, 8927 posts, RR: 40
Reply 7, posted (2 years 11 months 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 1072 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 7):
had, and still have, no idea of relations between Brazil and Uruguay, but assumed thereafter that they're probably not great. Needless to say, that was the last time I invited the two of them to the same party.

No specific rivalries with Uruguay other than any nation has with each other's soccer team. Sounds like Roberto has some issues, even if he was from Argentina that's a little much.



"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Reply 8, posted (2 years 11 months 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1052 times:

I agree with PPRVA, that was a very ''particular'' situation with a friend, and a rather bizarre one at that. Don't second doubt your senses Braybuddy, you did the right thing and I bet the next 20 times you invite two South Americans that would not happen.

So I must agree did jump to conclusions very quickly for this topic. I personally was surprised about these figures since Europeans, other Latin Americans and Americans know a lot more about Brazil in the sense of it's tropical climate, the women, the recent economic progress, that it would have double the tourist numbers. We also know how famous Peru is because of it's Inca and colonial legacy.

Argentina is not a ''tropical'' destination, nor does it have much of a colonial or pre-hispanic history, it's such new country relatively speaking, almost all of it built after 1870. And let's face it, that's what most tourist seek in South America. Or at least they used to. I just think it's a confirmation of how places like BA, Mendoza, Iguazu, Patagonia among others have really built a good solid program for visitors last 10 years.



My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5618 posts, RR: 32
Reply 9, posted (2 years 11 months 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 1003 times:

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 8):
Sounds like Roberto has some issues, even if he was from Argentina that's a little much.
Quoting Derico (Reply 9):
I agree with PPRVA, that was a very ''particular'' situation with a friend, and a rather bizarre one at that.

I should've followed it up with Robert (that's actually his name as his mother was a big Robert Redford fan, apparently) but I thought his remark was such a sweeping generalisation there was no point. Some things are just not worth teasing out. He'd never met Thiago before so couldn't possibly have had any personal dislike of him. And just to be fair, I was talking to Thiago about Robert before he arrived and he regaled me with a couple of Brazilian put-downs of Uruguans and Argentinians (which I won't repeat here!).

And I'm not just singling out South Americans for this sort of behaviour. It happens all over the world, unfortunately.


User currently offlineAR385 From Mexico, joined Nov 2003, 6094 posts, RR: 31
Reply 10, posted (2 years 11 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 977 times:
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Derico, you need to rename this thread, if you are including Mexico in your statistics, you have to keep in mind that Mexico is in North America. In any case you need to cite your sources because your numbers do not add up. In 2010, for example, Mexico received 22,400,000 tourists, while Argentina received 5,249,000 That 2010 number places Mexico at the number 10 in the list. The stated goal by the government is to be among the top 5 places in the next 10 years.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Tourism_rankings

Of that 22,400,000 about 11,300,000 stayed at least for one night in Mexico or within the border region. So that´s about 50% The rest go to over 9 mayor colonial cities we have. To over 16 world class beaches of which, Cancún and the usual ones are the most famous but there are many others. There are over 8 major ruins, of which Teotihuacán and Chichen-Itzá are but a small example.

http://intransit.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/28/tourism-to-mexico-is-up/
http://www.sectur.gob.mx/PDF/SECTUR_GOBIERNO_2010.pdf

Quoting Derico (Thread starter):
Buenos Aires has regained a reputation as a cosmopolitan world capital after two lost decades in the 80s/90s, with great shopping, dining, and cultural life. It is a very attractive as a great location for college exchange due to it's nightlife and theater, and also become a major gay-friendly destination.

In paper maybe. My brother was there about 3 weeks ago and came back very disappointed. The people are rude, service, even in nice restaurants is lacking, the shopping is outrageously expensive and the poverty in the city is palpable. He went to Tecnópolis and called it "one of the worst experiences in my life" What most shocked him, was that there was this huge grill and the cooks were throwing pieces of meat and sausage to the crowd gathered and they dove for the meat as if animals in a zoo. And if any meat fell on the floor, they would pick it up and eat it, no matter how full of dirt it was. And by the way 2 people are killed in Buenos Aires every day on crime related issues.

http://www.clarin.com/policiales/Gar...o-desato-polemica_0_428957207.html

Excerpt:

"Las últimas estadísticas oficiales con respecto a la inseguridad –que se dieron a conocer en septiembre del año pasado– correspondían a 2008. En esa oportunidad, el Gobierno Nacional reconoció un aumento del delito del 7% en todo el país y del 25% en la provincia de Buenos Aires."

So, no that idealized Buenos Aires you present would not be my preferred choice of vacation destination anytime soon.

Mendoza is fine. That´s where I go. But it has a huge wine industry, a lot of tourism from Chile and an important mechanical industry, so it´s set apart from the rest of the country. Crime there is not that bad, yet. You can walk in the middle of the night and nothing will happen to you.

I´m not sure about the other regions you mentioned, Iguazu Falls is sorely lacking in tourism infrastructure, I´ve been there, although it is beautiful, you are right. But the poverty levels in the Argentine Northwest are similar to Bolivia´s. I agree with you on the Glacier regions, hope they last and don´t melt. But the issue there it is that it´s very high end tourism and that by definition makes the number that go there not very big.

In any case, given Argentina´s economic outlook in the next couple of years, I wouldn´t be surprised if Brazil surpasses it soon. After all, they only came behind Argentina by 89,000 people.

Perú, well. Perú has been a basket case for many years and only recently has started to put its finances together and become serious about its economy. I´m sure the 90´s with Sendero Luminoso did not help it. But I wouldn´t be surprised if in a few years they come up as the next Latin American tourism powerhouse.

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 7):
He wasn't happy, and added that he didn't like Brazilians (followed by an exclamation mark), which I thought was QUITE a sweeping statement. There was nothing I could do at that stage, but I did observe their behaviour, and both of them ignored each other completely (after the initial introductions) until halfway through the meal when, during a gap in the conversation, Thiago quietly asked Robert if he was from Montivideo. Robert said no, named the town he came from, probably added another sentence, and that was the sum total of the conversation between the two of them. I had, and still have, no idea of relations between Brazil and Uruguay, but assumed thereafter that they're probably not great.

Braybuddy, that was a very particular situation and a total demonstration of rudeness and discourtesy towards you as a host. You are free to invite whomever you want to your house and they are free to say no. This Uruguayan, if he felt so strongly about having a Brazilian being invited should have excused himself from your function and simply not gone. I can assure that no well raised Latin American will show such crude behavior if told that a certain nationality will be present at the same place. Unless, of course they know each other, and the animosity has a history between the two. I´m sorry and sort of embarrased you had to go through that.

[Edited 2011-08-10 21:05:24]


MGGS
User currently offlineAeroflot001 From Argentina, joined Oct 2009, 400 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (2 years 11 months 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 894 times:

Quoting Derico (Reply 2):
If in 2008 you got 3.7 pesos for 1 US dollar and today 4 for ever dollar, you can exchange 1000 dollars and get 4000 pesos today, which may sound good compared to other countries. But guess what, since 2008 internal prices are 50% higher. While internal salaries have somewhat kept up with that (unless you work in the informal economy), for you as a foreign visitor your salary has probably stayed the same. So those 4000 pesos get you a lot less, which in the end is the same as if the peso was at 2.5 today. It's certainly not cheaper than other countries in the region. There are some fundamentals under the sustained rise.

Having just returned from Argentina 2 weeks ago I have to say Argentina is by no means cheap at all and I agree with your statement, Dads always saying how before 2002 when the Peso and the Dollar were 1 to 1 you could get a great hotel room for just 60-80 or even a decent one for less, The only thing I really saw as cheap was food and not so much anymore especially not at the fast food places, Mcdonalds and Burger King for example seem to have higher prices than right here in the US.

Cars and gas are also very expensive and in return that can affect the prices that tourists have to pay. Though this doesn't affect tourist much I am disgusted to see the PS3 for sale at $700 USD when here its running for $300, Argentina needs to appreciate the fact that there are many tourists going in from abroad and get their act together.

Has the relatively new $140 Visa on Arrival had any affect on Tourists? I sure know I wasn't happy when I had to pay it however I do show some sympathy in understanding why its there.


User currently offlineDerico From Argentina, joined Dec 1999, 4291 posts, RR: 12
Reply 12, posted (2 years 11 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 885 times:

Quoting Aeroflot001 (Reply 15):
PS3 for sale at $700 USD when here its running for $300, Argentina needs to appreciate the fact that there are many tourists going in from abroad and get their act together

Well, but that's just the government and their retrograde trading policies. They have instituted a massive tax on foreign electronics, as if that somehow will change people getting videogames some other way.

Argentina never was a cheap country. Historically it always was Latin America's most expensive society. The 2002 devaluation was an unusual period because there was NOT hyperinflation afterwards, thus creating some years of very attractive pricing for those with foreign currency. But like I said in an earlier post, what shows up in currency appreciation in Chile, Brazil or Uruguay shows as internal inflation here, you may be able to get the same amount of local currency but it will buy you much less. What needs to happen is that services need to add value to their product. Some have, but (and I agree with AR385), many have still a very caveman attitude of customer service. But remember this tourism industry is all fairly new for the country. Hopefully with some hotel saturation (like we are approaching in Mendoza), and other saturation levels, those that have poor service will fade and the ones with strong products stand as it should be.

Of course, why I am a major proponent for seeing AR dissapear.



My internet was not shut down, the internet has shut me down
User currently offlineAlex22 From Switzerland, joined Jan 2005, 71 posts, RR: 4
Reply 13, posted (2 years 11 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 807 times:

Hi all,

Interesting read. I'm not going to comment much but just tell about my personal feelings after 3 weeks in Argentina (july 2011 - 3rd time in the country)

First I do travel a lot, and have been to safe and unsafe places all around the world. I feel like I have enough experience to recognize the risks and even if I'm not easly scared, I'm not going to go in a place where I might get in trouble.

So Buenos Aires, huge city, lovely people (yes absolutely LOVELY people, even the taxi drivers...) As an example I 'll tell about the fact that we got blocked a full day at the Aeroparque because of the ashes clouds. Never I had seen so much patience among people. Lot of solidarity, helpful employees, something I'm not used to see because when that happens here in Geneva you always have people getting very rude and a lot of stress...

Then about the danger of the city. During the day you can go almost everywhere. Me and my gf did photoshoots of ruin buildings in some part of the city that most people would consider as dangerous. Not a single problem. We went out every night and you know what, we passed San-Martin and walked on Florida many many times past 2am, let me tell you that it was way safer than some parts of Geneva at night.... WAY safer.
What I've noticed too is that Argentinian people will feel very responsible of you and would scare you by telling you how dangerous it could be but again, it's SAFE. For sure you can be at the worst place/worst time but that could happen anywhere.

Now about the rest of Argentina. Again, we felt safe everywhere. We were right where the 2 french ladies were murdered. We didn't see anything bad. We also rented a car, crossed desert, went on dirt roads in the middle of nowhere. We saw many people hitchhiking which would not happen if it was THAT dangerous. And what was the best is that again, people were so nice and helpful, that was just great.

What I wanted to add is that we should consider the tourist attitude too. I have many examples where tourists were just acting like stupid and rude and what do you except then ? Everyone to understand your language when your not even able to say "gracias" in spanish ???????

I've traveled a lot in Peru and Bolivia too. Same things again, Bolivia is considered as a dangerous country by many but all we got was very positive even if it's an extremely poor country.
Peru was nice too, but I have to admit that there's been a couple of times were we did indeed feel like it was starting to be a bit dangerous.

Now as a last note. If you're visiting a place you thing it's unsafe, go there in the MORNING. All the bad guys are sleeping. It's not a joke. And for sure act with a little bit of common sense. Know a few worlds of local language, don't go around with jewelry or 8-month-salary cameras, don't take picture of people without asking and so on...

cheers
Alex


PS: I'm still trying to find a statistic where Argentina is more dangerous than Mexico but just can't find any...


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