Public bus service from Escazu to San Jose

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    I am thinking about buying property in Escazu, and one selling point that an agent is making to me is that the public bus stop in Escazu for downtown San Jose is only a five minute walk away from a particular condo. I know the fares are very low, but I have not been able to find any information on the internet about the approximate schedules of these buses. Do they run (i.e. depart from Escazu) something like hourly? Do they run every day? Do they run early morning as well as late evening? I know the taxi service is excellent, but the availability of cheap public transportation is intriguing to me. I live in Washington DC and I really appreciate the Metro subway system here. Does anyone have any information about this? Thanks.



    I’ve been waiting for an opportunity to recommend this excellent book. “Costa Rica by Bus” by John R. Wood
    lists routes, schedules, and fares throughout CR. It tells you where to catch your bus, any special directions you may need to give your bus driver and phone numbers of the various bus lines to get up-to-date information about the routes. It also supplies useful information that is not usually contained in other books on Costa Rica.

    If you want to get a sample of the info, go to

    If you want to order the book, go to

    The book is self-published softcover, well put together, and well-worth the 17 bucks for people who intend to use the Costa Rica system.



    Scott Oliver

    You might also want to see – The bus fares are a little out of date but the rest applies …

    You will also find a downloadable 90 page bus route schedule at

    Scott Oliver – Founder



    Metropolitan busses run constantly from early morning (6:00 am or earlier) through at least 10:00 p.m. or so. There are no schedules that I know of, unlike busses to more distant points. It’s important to note that public bus service in Costa Rica consists of private concessions. Entrepreneurs buy the rights to the route, run and repair their own busses, and hire their own drivers. I believe they’re only required to complete their route as often as they feel it will justify the cost. Fortunately, there seems to be enough riders to make it worthwhile just as fast as they can make their rounds. A 10 minute wait for any metropolitan bus would be long. On the other hand, during rush hour they might just pass you by because they’re already full.

    Taxis are omnipresent as well, and are only scarce during rush hour or in a heavy rain.

    Asking the driver for a schedule will do nothing but invite a strange look, followed by a giddy laugh. Don’t do it. They will tell you when they start and finish though. In addition, exact routes are published, but in truth they can barely keep up with the seemingly annual changes in which way all the one way streets in San Jose go. I’m not familiar with the books mentioned by “editor”, but I imagine their routes get out of date just as quickly. The most up-to-date information is on the street just ask any Tico in earshot, and as often as not they’ll probably offer to walk you to the stop.

    The Escazú San Jose route is part of the metropolitan system. Busses to more distant points, as I said, do have schedules, and are generally very prompt.

    Public transportation in CR is excellent, and I highly recommend it, (unless you’re spoiled like me and need your a/c), but keep your wallet in your front pocket. The busses have gotten a lot better over the years too. I remember when they were mostly used and decrepit “Bluebirds” bought from US school districts I swear one time I saw my own name scratched on the seatback…



    Thanks Editer, Scott and Gringo Tico for the great tips. Aside from the energy conservation side of using public transportation (which I value), I really enjoy the people watching experience so that the journey is often as rewarding as the destination. Bob in DC

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