Public Transportation

Rental cars, shared shuttles, regional flights, private drivers, taxis, public buses, boats—there are many ways to get around Costa Rica. For most visitors, a bit of this and a dash of that will do the trick—but which this and which that? Our guide introduces you to the options, outlining the advantages (and disadvantages) of each method. So you can save time or money or miles—it’s your choice.


Taxis are an affordable and one of the most convenient ways to get around in Costa Rica. Whether you’re heading from one side of San Jose to the other or embarking on a longer journey to a destination further afield, cabs are the perfect way to get from A to B. However, before you jump in a taxi and get your Costa Rican vacation started, there are a few things you should know:

Only hire authorized cabs

One of the most important things to remember when taking a taxi in Costa Rica is to only hire licensed, authorized cabs. Affectionately known as “rojos” due to their cherry-red color, these taxis are easily identifiable and can be flagged down as you would anywhere else. However, in some parts of the country, illegal taxis, popularly known as “piratas”, can often be mistaken for an authorized cab, as their drivers make every attempt to appear legitimate. The easiest way to differentiate between a genuine and illegal taxi is to look for the yellow triangle on the vehicle’s doors. 
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