Tuesday 13 April 2021

The Vehicular Restrictions for August 15 and 16

We explain who can and cannot drive today and tomorrow, the exceptions and the list of cantons in yellow and orange alert. Have a safe weekend.

(QCOSTARICA) Confusion reigns. During this ‘closed’ phase of August, the government announced vehicular restrictions for yellow and orange alert zones have left more than one driver scratching their heads, and asking themselves, can I drive today?

Add to that the error at the beginning of last week when the error and correction to the published restrictions as they apply today, Saturday, August 15, and tomorrow, Sunday, August 16.

According to information from the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MOPT) and the National Emergency Commission (CNE), this Saturday will be able to circulate freely (not only to go to supermarkets or pharmacies) vehicles with plates whose last digits are odd 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9, from 5 am to 7 pm in both orange and yellow areas.

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On Sunday under the same conditions, those who circulate in vehicles whose license plates end in even numbers 2, 4, 6, 8 and 0 may do so from 5 am to 7 pm both in yellow and orange areas.

See here interactive map of orange and yellow zones

In the border cantons, the hours are from 5 am at 5 pm (See list of alerts at the end of this note) and the same condition of odd on Saturday and even on Sunday applies.

Thus, unlike during the past week and next, vehicles can cross over from orange to yellow and driving is not restricted only to the supermarket, pharmacy or a medical center.

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On Monday, despite it being a legal holiday (Mother’s Day, today, is moved to Monday), we are back to the August vehicular restrictions: only two plates allowed to circulate in orange zones and two plates restricted in yellow.

Exceptions are, for example, to go to work, medical appointments, human or veterinary emergencies, accommodation (hotel) reservations, Riteve appointment, driving test, and take children to care centers; among others. This link is to the official and complete list of the exceptions.

Cantons in orange alert

  • Alajuelita
  • Aserrí
  • Curridabat
  • Desamparados (excepted are districts in yellow)
  • Escazú
  • Goicoechea
  • Montes de Oca
  • Puriscal
  • San José
  • Santa Ana
  • Alajuela (except Sarapiquí district)
  • Naranjo
  • La Unión
  • Belén
  • Flores
  • Heredia (Heredia center, Mercedes, San Francisco, and Ulloa districts)
  • San Isidro
  • San Pablo
  • Santo Domingo
  • Corredores (Canoas, La Cuesta, and Laurel districts)
  • Parrita

Cantons in yellow alert

  • Acosta
  • Desamparados (Frailes and San Cristóbal districts)
  • Dota
  • León Cortés Castro
  • Mora
  • Moravia
  • Pérez Zeledón
  • Tarrazú
  • Turrubares
  • Vázquez de Coronado
  • Alajuela (Sarapiquí district)
  • Atenas
  • Grecia
  • Guatuso
  • Los Chiles
  • Orotina
  • Palmares
  • Poás
  • Río Cuarto
  • San Carlos
  • San Ramón
  • San Mateo
  • Sarchí
  • Upala
  • Zarcero
  • Alvarado
  • Cartago
  • El Guarco
  • Jiménez
  • Oreamuno
  • Paraíso
  • Turrialba
  • Barva
  • Heredia (Varablanca district)
  • Santa Bárbara
  • San Rafael
  • Sarapiquí
  • Abangares
  • Bagaces
  • Cañas
  • Carrillo
  • Hojancha
  • La Cruz
  • Liberia
  • Nandayure
  • Nicoya
  • Santa Cruz
  • Tilarán
  • Buenos Aires
  • Corredores (Corredor district)
  • Coto Brus
  • Esparza
  • Garabito
  • Golfito
  • Montes de Oro
  • Osa
  • Puntarenas
  • Quepos
  • Guácimo
  • Limón
  • Matina
  • Pococí
  • Siquirres
  • Talamanca

Border cantons (restrictions from 5am to 5 pm)

  • Cantón de La Cruz
  • Cantón de Upala
  • Cantón de Guatuso
  • Cantón de Los Chiles
  • Cantón de San Carlos: Cutris, Pital and Pocosol.
  • Distritos de Llanuras del Gaspar and Curuña del cantón de Sarapiquí
  • Distritos de Pacuarito and Reventazón del cantón de Siquirres
  • Los distritos de La Rita, Roxana, Cariari and Colorado del Cantón de Pococí
  • Distrito de Duacarí de cantón de Guácimo
  • Cantón de Corredores
  • Distritos de Sabalito and Agua Buena del Cantón de Coto Brus
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And, just in case, in all this confusion, a reminder that the sanctions for violating the health sanitary vehicular restrictions are:

  • A ¢110,000 colones fine
  • Six points on the driver’s license, which implies driver-ed on renewal
  • Confiscation of license plates and or vehicle


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We strive for accuracy in its reports. But if you see something that doesn’t look right, send us an email. The Q reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it’s accuracy.

"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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