As of March 1, all types of vehicles, regardless of the vehicle plates, will be able to circulate every day from 5 a.m to 11 p.m.
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Published Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Driving restriction set to ease in March


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Due to the decrease in new covid-19 infections, as well as the reduction in the number of hospitalized patients in January and February, authorities of the National Emergency Commission announced an ease ban-on-driving rule in March.

As of March 1, all types of vehicles, regardless of the vehicle plates, will be able to circulate every day from 5 a.m to 11 p.m.

After 11 p.m. there should be no vehicle on the streets, except for people who travel to authorized places such as the airport, a clinic, work or a hotel, among others. The list of exceptions that allow any vehicle to drive at night are on
the government website Covid Exceptions Restriction.

The ban-on-driving rule continues in March, but only in San José’s capital city, known as the Circunvalación route.



The Circunvalación route, so-called Ruta 39, includes all the streets that are found around the capital city.

In this zone, the ban-on-driving rule continues from Monday through Friday, allowing driving from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. But, vehicle restrictions remain based on the last number of the license plate number:

• Monday: Vehicles banned with plates ending in 1 or 2.

• Tuesday: Vehicles banned with plates ending in 3 or 4.

• Wednesday: Vehicles banned with plates ending in 5 or 6.

• Thursday: Vehicles banned with plates ending in 7 or 8.

• Friday: Vehicles banned with plates ending in 9 or 0.

On weekends, Sundays and Saturdays, the ban-on-driving rule for the San José city was canceled. All types of vehicles, regardless of the vehicle plates, will be able to circulate every day from 5 a.m to 11 p.m.

Readers can verify the car plate number restrictions by visiting the government website, Covid-19 Alerta Vehicular.

The fine of approximately $180 for breaking the law remains effective. Traffic officials can not seize the vehicle or its plates and no longer reduce penalty points on the driving license of the driver for breaking the rule, due to the new law approved by Congress in October 2020.

According to authorities, if the trend of decreasing infections continues and the number of people receiving the vaccine against covid-19 also increases, the country could achieve the so-called herd immunity in the second half of this year.

Herd immunity, also known as “population immunity” is a form of indirect protection from infectious disease that can occur with some diseases when a sufficient percentage of a population has become immune to an infection, whether through vaccination or previous infections, thereby reducing the likelihood of infection for individuals who lack immunity, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


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Should authorities also lift the ban-on-driving rule in San José city?  We would like to know your thoughts on this story. Send your comments to news@amcostarica.com

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