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Before Tourism


How long has the DR been a popular site for tourism? What was the country like before then? What kinds of jobs did people have?

I am interested in anything that anyone may know about the DR before tourism became popular on the island.


Before tourism, I don’t know. We first went in 1984. All inclusive was a novel new idea that had not caught on in Puerto Plata. We paid $600 each for two weeks (flight, hotel & taxes), for a 1 bedroom suite. We stayed at the Puerto Plata Beach Resort on the Malecon, which had just opened. Now renamed & added a casino. Food & drink were very cheap, in fact cheaper than any all inclusive we saw in DR for the next several years. Staff only spoke Spanish, and many European travellers were there that didn’t speak English. That is the DR we truly fell in love with.

The only tours we heard of were the cable car and horseback riding. It has since become more ‘north americanized’ with much more available. Although I am disappointed that not going AI is now incredibly expensive.

We have since learned much more about the culture and the people, and have made some good friends there. We consider DR our home away from home.


I was curious about the DR before tourism because currently, the people on the island seem to rely on it so much to make a living. I know there are other industries including sugar but am interested in how others made a living before they relied on tourism


The answer is simple “off the land”, farming and mining.

Then, service industries and government.