Over 80% of tourists who travel to the island, according to one of the local papers, come from the U.S. Unlike Cuba and the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico has failed miserably to attract visitors from Europe. I suppose many Americans come here because a U.S passport is not required when visiting. Ironically, many Puerto Ricans themselves travel to the Dominican Republic because it's simply a lot cheaper. In recent years, this neighbor island has actually received more visitors than Puerto Rico itself. There are actually many areas in which this island needs to work on if it wishes to remain competitive in the tourism industry.
Service is one of the issues which Puerto Rico needs to address. For example, ferry service to Vieques and Culebra is atrocious, to say the very least. One of the areas which I believe the PRTC has also neglected are the smaller villages and towns. I am a huge fan of Spanish colonial cities and it saddens me to see the slow decay of so many of Puerto Rico's plazas. Last Sunday, we visited San Germán, an incredibly quaint, cozy and pretty town on the Southwestern part of the island. Unsurprisingly, the local tourism office was closed and there weren't many people walking around at all. Puerto Rico has so much potential to develop itself as a major international tourist destination, but it will certainly require much initiative and effort.