Borders Nicaragua-Costa Rica-Panama
wrote them down in an email anyhow... so might aswell post them here!
Borders were crossed in October 2011. Both borders at the pacific side.
Nicaragua - Costa Rica @ Penas Blancas
Out of Nica and into CR/Panama you can pay everything with USD! No Cordobas/Colones needed! (only a small amount or a toll road, see below)
- chase away all the helpers and don't buy any papers from them.
-You have to pay 1USD municipal tax each, but you can pay in Cordobas, 20 each.
- Then you drive to some aduana guys, they check some papers and write something down on the import paper. No clue why...
Drive on, an go to your left.
Ask around for aduana.
There really is no sence in this at all, they just send you around and around, needing papers and stuff etc.
Don't pay some supercute chica (or someone else ;-)) for some papers you'll have to fill in, you;ll get them for free at the desk where you need it. Take your own pen.
-get your emigration done, costs: 2 USD each or 45 cordobas each. (here you have to fill in that paper)
- on your import-docs of the bike you'll need two stamps/signatures. Just ask around and some aduana guys and a policeofficer will arrange this. As said before, they had send us around a lot. Then you go to some small emigration office, where they stamp you out of the country. Done!
- Drive away, at the final exit of Nicaragua they will ask for the permits, check your license plate and keep the permits. Then ou are free to go.
Costa Rica IN:
- chase away any helpers and don't buy any papers of them.
- You'll be stopped for desinfection, they will spray your bike-tyres for free.
- Then drive on, until it is busy with buildings on the left and right, with a restaurant and stuff. Just before the restaurant, you'll enter the building and get your visa in your passport (ask for 90 day,s you'll never know). Is for free.
- Drive BACK to the desinfection-stuff, but when you're almost there.... you'll see some poles sticking out of tyres at your right at a parking place. Small building, white with a patio. If you arrive at the desinfection, you're to far.
- Get your mandatory insurance here: 67xx colones or someting, or 13,5 USD each.
- Next door: get 1 copy of each insurance document and your stamp in your passport! 100 colones, or 0.2 USD per page. If you don't have them already, get 1 copy of bike paperwork, passport and driving license.
- Drive back to the restaurant-place, and go to your right: some nice english spekaing guy will ask for all your copies, put them together, makes a note on it and wave you on.
- Drive on, and take a right turn where you'll see a lot of trucks. Search for aduana. Give them the pile of copies, and show them some originals (only passport if I remember correctly). They will give you another document, with your bike details. Check, sign and off you go!
Took us 2:15 hours, for the both of us, arriving at 8:45am.
Costa Rica - Panama @ Canoas
- Leaving CR is easy, just search for a building with blue sighs 'Exit/Salida de Costa Rica'or something. Walk past the line, ask for two exit papers. FIll them in, wait in line and get your exit stamp.
Go to the left, into the corridor on your right and on your left you'll find customs. FIll in some paper, done. All for free
Drive on, until some big buildings where trucks are standing still
two buildings with a round building in the middle (upstairs are the toilets) you'll see at your left.
Park the bikes, and go to immigration, it is facing the round middle, but at the side of Panama. Someone will put some tax-sticker in your passport, cost 1 USD.
Get your visa, and mention you are with a bike. done.
Go to your bikes, on the right you'll find SEGURAS & COPIAS. get insurance, 15.30 USD each and they will give you two papers (copias, one for yourself, the other for aduana).
With these papers, you go to the building on the CR-sode of the round building, but look for the rear entrance at the CR-side. (other side of Aduana/ Tourist-info)
Some chica will stamp your insurance papers, god knows why. We had to wait for an hour for her, because she had lunch. :-S She didn't even look at the papers.
GO to Aduana, facing the round building on the CR side. Give some papers and passports, and copies of title and passport, and get it done. Check all data on the document they give you, they do make mistakes in VIN's etc. ;-)
When okay, you sign it and take one with you.
Go to the round building, and look for some guy who will check your bike. He will stamp/sign the backside of the document you got from Aduana.
Then drive ahead, and go to the last window on your left, just before the automatic fumigators for trucks. Show the document above, pay 1USD each, get some paper...
Then they will ask you to drive to the fumingator, and fumingate your bike by hand.
We had bad luck because the printer wasn't working for a while at SEGUROS, and then we had to wait one hour for the chica's stamp... Must be possible in two hours!
Good info, bloody CA, build a bridge from Cartagena to Guatamala. Please. Ride safe.
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