There has been plenty of confusion abut exemptions to the downtown travel restrictions, so the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes has issued a clarification.
For example, vehicles that are at full capacity are not subject to the restriction between 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., said the ministry. That includes passenger vehicles with five occupants. But it also includes a pickup that only has seats for two persons if the second seat is occupied.
The restrictions are from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day depending on the last digit of the vehicle license number. But if a family has two vehicles with the same digit, the owners can apply for permission to operate one during times they would otherwise be forbidden, said the ministry. Getting permission requires a lot of paperwork, according to the process described by the ministry.
There also are exemptions for persons with disabilities, noted the ministry.
However, there are no exemptions from expats who live far from the city who might accidentally violate the law, despite the tiny signs on the highways.
The restricted area is basically the center of the city inside the Circunvalación from La Uruca to San Pedro. The forbidden license plate numbers are two a day starting with 1 and 2 on Mondays and ending with 9 and 0 on Fridays.