Country: Domenican Republic (DR).
Capital: Santo Domingo.
Population: 9,507,133 (July 2008 est.).
Climate: Tropical maritime; little seasonal temperature variation;
seasonal variation in rainfall.
Coastline: 1,288 km.
Geographic coordinates: 19° 00' N, 70° 40' W.
Highest point: Pico Duarte 3,175 m.
Location: Caribbean, eastern two-thirds of the island of Hispaniola,
between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean, east of Haiti.
Size: 250 km x 360 km, 48,464 sq km.
Terrain: Rugged highlands and mountains with fertile valleys
Overview: The Dominican Republic is a lower middle-income developing
country. It is the Caribbean's most popular tourist destination. There
are plenty long stretches of white beach on the island. The Domenican Republic
has a fair number of sights of historical interest, including La Vega Vieja,
one of the oldest settlements in the New World. The number of things you
can do in the Dominican Republic is simply endless.
Accommodations: All inclusive resorts, hotels, guest houses,
Activities: Swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, windsurfing,
kite boarding, deep sea fishing, whale watching, tennis, golf, mountain
biking, horseback riding, and trekking.
Average tourist arrivals: 3,992,303 (2009).
Electricity: 110 volts AC, 60 cycles. Outlets will also come
in the standard U.S. two and three pin plugs. Travelers coming from Europe
or the Pacific will need to bring voltage converters and plug adapters
in order to be able to use their appliances.
Entry Requirements: Citizens and permanent residents of the US,
Canada, the UK, Ireland, Australia and all EU countries don't need a visa
when visiting the Dominican Republic, but must obtain a ninety-day Dominican
Republic tourist card for US$ 10 (US dollars only) at the airport on arrival.
Extension of stay: extensions are possible; you need to visit
the Migration Department in Santo Domingo to request an extension. You
will need to pay from about RD$ 150 to RD$ 5,000 depending on the extension.
The fee can also be paid at the airport upon departure.
Sleep: In some areas cocks and dogs can disturb your sleep.
Telephone: Relatively efficient system based on island-wide microwave
radio relay network. The international country code is 1-809.
Cost of living: The Domenican Republic is a poor country and
one of the cheaper Caribbean islands. But in the tourist centers like Puerto
Plata and Punta Cana costs are relative hight. Many locals sheat tourists
where they can, even bus conductors. Santo Domingo is ranked number 226
of the most expensive places in the world (Barbados 108, Tampa Fla 235).
Credit cards: Major credit cards are accepted everywhere, but
a commission is usually charged and it is recommended that you only use
your credit card at your hotel as fraud incidents have been reported. The
best exchange rates are paid on US travellers cheques and secondly on US
dollars cash and are best exchanged at exchange bureaux (casas de cambio).
Banking hours are Monday to Friday from 8.30am to 4.30pm; some banks also
open on Saturday. ATMs are widespread. .
Currency: Dominican peso (DOP, RD$), divided into 100 centavos.
Dominican pesos per US dollar is 33.113 (2007). Many of the hotels and
restaurants in the main tourist destinations display their prices in US
dollars as well as in Dominican Pesos, as US dollars are widely accepted
and some places will also accept Euros.
Airport: Puerto Plata Gregorio Luperon Airport. The airport is
located in the Silver Port province, 18km (11 miles) to the east of Puerto
Plata. To get to the airport from Puerto Plata, take Hwy-5 towards the
west and follow the signs to the airport. The driving distance is about
18km (11 miles). Public Buses and minibuses run frequently between the
airport and the city.
Departure Tax: There is a US$ 10 Tourist Card fee some people
will have to pay on entry and a US$ 20 Departure Tax that must be paid
before leaving the Dominican Republic.
Ports and harbors: Boca Chica, Caucedo, Puerto Plata, Rio Haina,
Ethnic groups: Mixed 73 %, white 16 %, black 11 %.
Government type: Democratic republic.
Legal system: Based on French civil codes; Criminal Procedures
Code modified in 2004 to include important elements of an accusatory system;
accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction.
Literacy: 87 % (male: 86.8 %, female: 87.2 %).
Religions: Roman Catholic 95 %, other 5 %.
Agriculture-products: Sugarcane, coffee, cotton, cocoa, tobacco,
rice, beans, potatoes, corn, bananas; cattle, pigs, dairy products, beef,
GDP per capita: US$ 9,200 (2007 est.).
Industries: Tourism, sugar processing, ferronickel and gold mining,
textiles, cement, tobacco.
Natural resources: Nickel, bauxite, gold, silver.
Unemployment rate: 15.5 % (2007 est.).