Foreign Driver’s License Grace Period Extended for Legal Residents
MOPT: New grace period for people with DIMEX cards and Costa Rican nationals who hold a foreign driver's license. This extension does not apply to tourists or people with applications in progress. The announcement pertaining
MOPT: New grace period for people with DIMEX cards and Costa Rican nationals who hold a foreign driver’s license. This extension does not apply to tourists or people with applications in progress. The announcement pertaining to tourists is expected in the upcoming days.
The MOPT reported that it will grant a grace period for 6 more months, so that foreign nationals who legally reside in the country, as well as Costa Ricans whose foreign driver’s licenses have expired, can continue using these licenses to drive in Costa Rica.
According to the press release, this applies only for foreign nationals under the following immigration categories:
– Permanent Residents.
– Temporary Residents.
– Special category of complementary protection (free condition)
Driver‘s licenses issued abroad that have expired, or foreign nationals in any of the aforementioned categories who have not managed to homologate their document, will enjoy this grace period so that during this time they can carry out the local driver‘s license request before the COSEVI.
This grace period will apply from the date of publication of the official Resolution in the Official Gazette, which shall take place in the next few days.
It is important to clarify that the grace period applies solely to people in the aforementioned categories as well as Costa Rican nationals whose licenses should have been homologated or expired as of March 20, 2020, so that they can continue driving with their foreign license and can carry out the homologation process, within the next 6 months, even if the foreign driver‘s license has expired.
As long as this grace period is in force, the Transportation Police will not sanction people who are covered by this extension. Foreign nationals shall carry their foreign driver‘s licenses, DIMEX cards (typically called cedulas), and passports. We are waiting for the official Resolution as carrying the passport around seems to be unnecessary, however, it is listed as a requirement in the announcement made by MOPT today.
If you already have your DIMEX card and you are ready to proceed with the homologation, please follow the process and tips detailed here.
Please notice that this extension applies solely to people who have DIMEX cards. If you are a tourist or a person with an application in progress at the Immigration Department, this does not apply to you. Considering that the validity of entry stamps has been extended by Immigration, as you can review here, we have already requested for Transportation to extend the driving privileges of tourists until June 1, 2021. Once we receive a response, we will let the community know.