An expat’s guide to passing the new driver’s exam

The traffic education organization has increased the number of written exam questions from 25 to 40 to better evaluate applicants, it said.

The test is all done electronically now on a computer screen. But there is a big distance between passing the written exam and actually behaving like a Costa Rican in traffic.

For the benefit of expats who might take the exam, here are some possible questions and likely answers from experienced Costa Rican drivers.

1. You are fourth in line behind three vehicles stopped for a red light. How long should you wait before blowing your horn when the light turns green?

a. One second
b. One second
c. One second
d. Three seconds in anticipation

2. You are traveling on a busy city street during rush hour. A vehicle nearby brushes your bumper but does not do any damage. What do you do:

a. Take the driver’s name, cédula number and telephone number in case there are hidden damages.
b. Forget about it, and go home to supper.
c. Call your office and report that you will be absent for a week because of traffic injuries.
d. Stop your car dead center in the street, call the Policía de Tránsito and block traffic for four hours until the police arrive.

3. You are driving down a two-lane street in the city, and a product displayed in a store window attracts your attention. What do you do?

a. Remember the store location, find a parking lot and return to inspect the article.
b. Hurry on to work
c. Pull up on the sidewalk and go shopping.
d. Stop dead in the traffic lane, get out of the car and go shopping.

4. You are driving on a typical two-lane country road without lines in the driving rain. What is the safest procedure.

a. Cut the speed, watch out for pedestrians and proceed carefully
b. Move the car to the center of the road so it does not slip off either side.
c. Pull over to the side of the road, put on emergency lights and wait for the rain to stop.
d. Drive faster so you can reach your destination quicker.

5. What does the term velocidad restringida mean?

a. There is a speed zone ahead
b. Signs are hard to read at this speed.
c. It’s another law that won’t be enforced.
d. Nothing. The cameras are all turned off.

6. You have been out with the boys watching a very important soccer game between West Wonga and St. Mary’s School for Young Ladies. You have had six shots of guaro and five Imperials. You have to go home. What do you do.

a. Call a taxi and come back for the car tomorrow.
b. Look hard for a sober friend to drive you.
c. Have another guaro and sleep under the table.
d. Be thankful that you have had so much practice driving drunk.

7. You are approaching an intersection with a pedestrian crossing. A pretty woman is crossing in front of you pushing a baby carriage. And an elderly couple has just started to cross the street, too. What do you do.

a. Bring the car to a halt and signal both the woman and the couple to cross.
b. Slow down and honk so the pedestrians will move faster.
c. Leer lasciviously at the pretty woman and drive slowly by her honking the horn.
d. Leer lasciviously at the pretty woman, step on the gas to show masculinity and swerve to scare the elderly couple.

8. What are the items that you must always carry in your car

a.  Jack, a red triangle and a fire extinguisher
b. A detachable mirror to apply makeup.
c. Proof of registration and vehicle inspection.
d. A cell phone.

9. How many points on your license will be accumulated when you are caught driving an uninspected car without registration while speeding 30 percent greater than the posted limit.

a. 10
b. 20
c. 50
d. No points but you lose 20,000 colons.

10. What does a red light mean?

a. Stop.
b. Slow down
c. You can only turn right or left.
d. It’s a suggestion.

Need we say that the correct answers are all d?

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