Puerto Rico


Land and Climate

Covering over 5,324 square miles.
Temperatures are 70 to 80F year round.
Rain falls mainly between May and December.
Several destructive hurricanes have hit the island.
Puerto Rico is about the same size as the states of Delaware and Rhode Island combined.


The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico has 78 municipalities.
Currently Luis Fortuno, who will be replaced by governor-elect García Padilla in January 2013
As commonwealth citizens, Puerto Ricans do not pay federal income tax and do not vote in U.S. national elections, but they do elect their own officials.


The indigenous Taíno people were living in Puerto Rico when Columbus arrived in 1493.
The Spanish introduced slavery and diseases that decimated the indigenous population.
In 2006, street protests were sparked by the implementation of Puerto Rico's first sales tax, aimed to alleviate budget deficits like the one that led to temporary closure of the island's public schools


Since World War II, industrialization and duty-free trade with the United States have produced a dynamic economy in what used to be a poor, agrarian-dominated island.
Only 3 percent of the population is now engaged in agriculture; 20 percent works in the industrial sector.
The government, services, and tourism provide most of the nation's jobs.
Unemployment is considerably higher than in the United States. Puerto Rico exports sugar, coffee, petroleum products, chemicals, pharmaceuticals, textiles, and electronic equipment.

Vacation checklist

Travel cost $379 From Chicago to Puerto Rico
Hotel/ $200
Meals $150
Water park $200
Tourism $50
Zip line $110
Scuba Diving $150
Hang Glide $70
Kayaking $100
Kite Boarding $100
Shopping $1299
Total Cost $2808


Firefighter. 2007. Photograph. Collection of CultureGrams. ProQuest, 2012. Web. 2 Dec 2012.
La Piedra Escrita. 2007. Photograph. Collection of CultureGrams. ProQuest, 2012. Web. 2 Dec 2012.