Immigration reports hike in number of holiday exits

The weekend before Christmas, 26,409 people left Costa Rica for Nicaragua through the Peñas Blancas border, according to the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería. Only 10 percent of these persons were Costa Rican citizens.

This number is a 50 percent increase from the number of persons who left last Christmas, spokespersons said.

Immigration said that the process from getting these persons through the border crossing was fast. Officials reported that 21 people were served each minute, and on average it took 30 seconds for border agents to service patrons.

This was attributed to the fact that 14 agents were available at the departure counter and 14 more at the return counter. These two counters were in separate rooms.

The agency said that it expected from 15,000 to 20,000 persons entering Costa Rica from Nicaragua this week.

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