Frequently asked questions

Do I need an international licence for to drive in Costa Rica?

An international driver’s license (IDP) is only required if the driver does not have a license from their home country with information in the Roman alphabet.

What is the minimum age to rent a car?

As a general rule, the minimum age to rent a car in Costa Rica is aged 18, however each agency has its rules. Most companies require a minimum age of between 21 to 25 years.

Do I need a credit card to rent a vehicle?

Most companies require a credit card with raised numbers to hold a security deposit for the duration of the car rental period. The amount of the deposit can vary between companies, but the minimum is usually about 1,000 USD and the rental amount.

What insurance do I need to rent a vehicle in Costa Rica?

Rental agencies offer a variety of protection coverages for rental vehicles, in order to ensure your peace of mind during your vacation. Each company has different policies regarding insurance, and usually the minimum requirement will be a protection for damage to third parties, as well as protection for the rented vehicle (the names of the coverages can vary from company to company).

Can I use an international insurance to replace the rental insurance?

No. Credit card holders may be eligible for CDW coverage but third party insurance is mandatory and cannot be replaced by an international insurance.

Is it easy to drive in Costa Rica?

Costa Rica is small country which is easy to get around. Drive on the right side of the road. In urban areas the maximum speed is 25 mph, unless otherwise noted. The speed limit on motorways is usually 50 mph, but can be up to 56 or 62 mph. In residential areas, the limit is 37 mph, and the limit is 15.5 mph near schools.

What do I do if I get a traffic fine?

If you are pulled over by a police officer, present your documents and take a ticket if one is issued. Tickets should be paid at one of the national banks or by the car rental agency when you return the vehicle. Do not pay illegal bribes to transit officials.

Is it safe to leave possessions in the vehicle?

Do not leave valuables inside the vehicle when you are leaving it to avoid offering temptation to criminals. If you get a flat tire, change it in a safe place with the vehicle locked. Be cautious of strangers offering assistance.