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Costa Rica Fast Food Destination?

U.S. Franchises Coming To Costa Rica

Costa Rica U.S. Franchise RestaurantsThe chicken wars are on in Costa Rica as U.S. fast food franchises are making their way into an untapped market. With franchises such as Pollo Tropical and Popeyes recently opening restaurants in the San Jose area, Costa Ricans are beginning to experience some choices when it comes to the dining out experience. Are all of these new restaurants a good thing or is this the start of North Americanizing Costa Rica. The proof is in the chicken!

April seemed to be the month of fast food franchises opening in Costa Rica. The month began with the first Pollo Tropical, a chicken based restaurant opening its first location in San Jose. From Miami, Florida, the restaurant, located across the street for the Central Park in San Jose, Costa Rica is home to a variety of chicken and pork dishes, seasoned with Caribbean flavors for that something extra. You can view their menu online at http://www.pollotropical.com/menu.aspx  No sooner was the grand opening sign put up on the Pollo Tropical location, Popeyes, a U.S. fried chicken franchise opened a 1.5 million dollar restaurant the in San Jose suburb of Curridabat. The two restaurants now join several exisiting chicken franchises already in Costa Rica, including Church’s Chicken, Pollo Campero from Guatemala, Costa Rica’s Rostipollos and of course, the king of all, KFC.  Could this be too much chicken options in Costa Rica to make any of these franchise investments viable? Time will tell just how much Costa Rica loves its chicken!

Costa Rica Chickened Out!

The influx of North American brands into Costa Rica continues with a potentially untapped market for a lot of these franchises. But are Costa Ricans willing to indulge and splurge money on all these options? Sometimes having choices may be to the detriment of existing Costa Rican based businesses. Costa Rica is geared to accept foreign investment that will result in construction and brand promotion, two pluses for Costa Rica. As the purchasing power of Costa Rican’s grows with better jobs and education, the stage is set to provide these new earners with many options.

With International tourism the franchises also attract those who are seeking familiarity when it comes to their eating habits. For example, Applebee’s has two existing locations with plans for an additional two. Chili’s will open its first location in the Mall Multiplaza, Escazu later this year. Expansion of Quizno’s, KFC and Teriyaki Experience is scheduled for the Juan Santamaria International Airport foodcourt.

Remember, when travelling in Costa Rica and anywhere in the world, part of the experience and charm is to be adventuresome and take part in some local culture which may include a Casado or a Tamal. After all you can get all the chicken you want back home! There is so much to see and do and eat in Costa Rica. After all, it’s not just about the chicken!

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Filed Under: CultureFeaturedSan Jose

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About the Author: Tee is Senior Editor of CostaRicaCLOSEUP.com and NBC's adventure dating series fans magazine LoveInTheWildFansMag.com, as well ascontributing editor to QRCodesUSA.org

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  1. Sheldon Burgesss says:

    I agree with supporting local, here in Canada, I only buy from local farmers. Furthermore, I believe everyone should watch “Food Inc.” found on any documentary website. Please watch in it’s entirety before you eat “mystery chicken”.
    SB

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