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A couple of years ago, Costa Rica switched to a licence plate using an AAA NNN format, excluding vowels, but allowing Y. The previous version, using all numbers was now into the 900,000ths, and they did not want to go to a 7 digit plate were it to reach 1000000. At the time of the switch, for an additional fee, one could obtain a 'personalized plate', but, I didn't have my car at that time, or I would have chosen ZZZ 999, the highest possible plate number. Although I've never seen it on a vehicle, I suspect it was used by the time I needed a licence plate. Because I didn't want a plate that would restrict me from San Jose on a Monday, or Friday, I did choose a 3 as the last digit, restricting me on Tuesday, the day lest likely for me to need to be in San Jose. I also went with CDN (Canadian), although only one person so far, a Russian, got the reference.

As a little fun  thing to  do while driving, or even, sitting in a park, I've been trying to see if I can find the lowest number plate of a car still on  the road. I've  seen old Toyotas in the 400's, but on Sunday, I came across what I believe is the lowest plate number in the country. I was on the AutoPista, turning to Ruta 3 to Heredia, when a split window Volkswagen Beetle, in black and red went down the freeway. And the licence plate number was 3. The split window Beetle was produced up until mid 1953.

I can't explain it, but that made me thrilled. I just know (?) that there isn't a 0, 1, or 2 out there anymore.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been curious about vanity plates here.  Maybe you know the answer to this.  When you sell a car with a personalized plate, does the plate go with the car (as is normal) or does the plate stay with you?  Or maybe the personalized plate just goes "dead"?


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  • 3 months later...


So, many people are getting rather complacent about going into San Jose on  the day their plate prohibits them from doing so. Enforcement has been almost non-existent for quite a few months, until last week. There was a line of over 10 cars on Segunda Avendia, with every available Transito officer writing tickets. They couldn't get everyone, they were so busy.

I tend to obey traffic laws, although at times I 'do it the Tico way'. Other times, I've just forgotten it's Tuesday, until I'm in the middle of San Jose. Also, never park in the yellow zones - you may get away with it for a long time, but, as another current thread indicates,  eventually, your number comes up (and removed from your car).

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