If you are a foreigner who lives in Costa Rica and have a driver’s license of another country, you can obtain a Costa Rican license (homolgar is the Spanish word for the process) every Tuesday and Wednesday at any of the 13 driver education (Educación Vial) offices in the country.
Hugo Jiménez, head of the driver center, said that the “quick process” is between 7:00 am At 11:00 am in any of the offices and not only in central offices in La Uruca, where services are saturated.
“It is important for the user to be clear that the procedure and the requirements to homologar the license is the same procedure in any of the offices, there is no distinction, even the same days and at the same time,” he explained.
Driver education centers are located in Heredia, Cartago, Nicoya, Liberia, Rio Claro, Puntarenas, San Carlos, Alajuela, San Ramón, Perez Zeledon, Guápiles, Limón and San José (La Uruca).
The website http://www.educacionvial.go.cr lists the location of the driver education centers around the country, as well as information for obtaining a drivers license.
The cost is ¢5,000 colones and does not require an appointment.
Foreigners with residency in the country will need their residency card, refugee card or work permit and their foreign license (must be in good condition) and the medical certificate, which can be obtained from a certified doctor located next to or near the driver education center. Just look for the signs. There are always signs.
Based on current immigration laws, foreigners without residency, refugee card or work permit or with a residency application in process, no can do.
As a ‘visitor’ to Costa Rica, a foreigner can continue to drive with the license from their home country (or any other country) as long as they are within their “visitor’ visa period, typically up to 90 days from arrival for North Americans and Europeans, less for other nationalities. Important to check the passport stamp to verify the tourist visa period.
Important to check the passport stamp to verify the tourist visa period.
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