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Costa Rica
Thursday, May 26, 2022

Costa Rica Driving Restrictions for December 20 to January 15

Costa Rican authorities on Wednesday announced the country’s Covid-19-related driving restrictions for December 20 – January 15 2022

In light of the progress made in reducing the levels of infection, hospitalizations and deaths, the Government of Costa Rica announced a series of measures for the upcoming holiday season.

This includes actions such as the relaxation of vehicle restrictions, an extension of the transition period for the voluntary use of the QR code, recognition of the physical vaccination card issued abroad, and 100% of standing room on buses.

As of Monday, December 20:

  • Nighttime restriction for all of Costa Rica will be from Monday to Sunday from 12:00 midnight to 5:00 a.m. and the weekday daytime restriction applies only to the San José ring road.
  • On Christmas Eve and early morning of December 25, as well as New Year’s Eve and early morning of January 1, there will be no vehicle restrictions.
  • As the QR code situation is still being debated , the transition period of voluntary use of the QR code has been extended for another month.
  • As of December 17, people vaccinated outside Costa Rica who do not have the QR code will be able to show the physical vaccination card issued abroad to enter stores that request it.
  • As of January, 100% standing capacity will be available in buses.

The QR Code Dilemma for the Holidays

Since the precautionary measure issued by the Administrative and Civil Court of the Treasury on the usage of the QR code has still not yet been resolved, the transition period for the voluntary use of the QR Code is extended for up to one more month, which means until February 7, 2022. During this time commercial businesses and large gatherings can choose between the two types of vaccine verifications:

A. Voluntary enforcement of certification via QR code:  This allows for the ability to have a higher capacity (in some establishments up to 100%).

B. Non-enforcement of the QR code: Businesses will have a lower capacity and will also have to make sure people are at least 6 feet apart.

If you are Traveling

As of this Friday, December 17, people vaccinated abroad, whether Costa Ricans or foreigners, who do not have a QR code will have their physical vaccination card issued abroad recognized, in order to prove that they have the complete vaccination schedule and to be able to enter those businesses that request it.

For those take the Bus

The standing capacity has been increased to 100% which means, if anyone is counting, is 20.

A Final Safety Reminder

Residents are reminded, that in order to keep the numbers going down:

  • keep a distance of 6 feet from other people
  • wear a mask in public
  • prioritize open spaces with good ventilation instead of closed spaces
  • wash hands frequently

These relaxed measures are due in part to the fact that in last two weeks, Costa Rica has recorded a 25.5% decrease in COVID-19 cases, a 30.8% drop in mortality from one week to the next, and a 15.2% drop in hospitalizations. These are the lowest levels in 77 weeks, or nearly a year and a half and has allowed the gradual reopening of the country to move forward.

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