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End of year? Marchamo time!

November 23rd, 2014

moneyIf you own a car here in Costa Rica, you probably already know what is marchamo. Marchamo is paid every December and gives you the right to take your car out of the garage (or wherever) and drive it in Costa Rica, i.e. “circulate”. There are over 1 million cars in Costa Rica.  The marchamo payment includes mandatory liability insurance, property tax, sales and other taxes and any traffic fines that you have failed to pay.  Depending on the age and model of your car, marchamo is by no means cheap. Interested in this topic?  Read On! Continue reading »

Bad News for Drivers in San José

July 2nd, 2009

jamupLast year, the Ministerio de Obras Públicas (MOPT or as North Americans might call it, the Transportation Department)  made a rule that drivers could not enter San Jose on certain days of the week, dependent upon the last digit of their license plate.  For numbers 1-2 it was Monday,  2-3 Tuesday, etc.  I immediately hated this rule as it restricted my freedom. Well, I did not Blog about it… just as well because about 3 hours later, I changed my mind!  Suddenly, the traffic in San Jose dropped and while I had to be inventive on Mondays, the other 4 days were wonderful!

Crow tasted just fine. Besides, I knew that some offended person would file an appeal with Sala IV, the Costa Rica Constitutional Court.They did, and just days ago, the court  deemed  this restriction unconstitutional and thus declared it null and void.

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Costa Rica Takes Action to Control Gasoline Usage Part 1

June 27th, 2008

Mopt restrictionsFor quite some time now, the government has placed restrictions on what vehicles could enter San Jose. This was more done to lessen the overwhelming traffic in San Jose during peak hours than to control gasoline usage. All non commercial vehicles were affected.

The system was/is simple enough. You were restricted from entering San Jose for about 2 hours each morning rush hour and two hours during the afternoon rush based on your license plate. For me it was rarely an issue, and when it was, I just drove the circunvalación, the road that runs around San Jose and locally known as “the rotundas” because of the numerous traffic circles in that route. Sometimes I’d drive the La Uruca route. No big deal.

Well this all changed this week as the government expanded enormously the restricted areas and the hours of restriction, and yesterday, over a thousand folks learned this the hard way and got a little $10 traffic citation for their ignorance.

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