Every day, an estimated 20,000 people attempt to call the Road Safety Council (Cosevi) and try to get an appointment for a practical drivers test, which is required to get a drivers license for the first time. At the end of the day, only 500 will get through to have their name added to a waiting list.
Although Cosevi has contracted a private call center to handle the phones, the earliest the company could take over would be March.
According to the Traffic Police, one of the most common penalties is operating a motor vehicle without a license. The fine is ¢99,000. The violation is especially common in more remote areas of the country. At least 1,000 drivers are cited every month in Costa Rica for failure to have a valid drivers license.
In addition to taking calls, Cosevi has problems administering the test. In Costa Rica, there are just 30 instructors and at least 10 are only in San Jose. Some regional offices may only have one or two instructors.
Driver Education has 12 regional offices distributed in San Ramon, San Carlos, Guápiles Lemon Liberia Perez Zeledon, Rio Claro, Alajuela, Heredia, Cartago, San José and Nicoya.