Obligatory insurance for vehicles going up 5.2 percent for next year

The obligatory insurance motorists pay in their marchamo will go up this year 5.2 percent for passenger vehicles.

The Instituto Nacional de Seguros, which provides the coverage and collects the marchamo or road tax fees, announced this Friday.

The Institute also is not offering this year the lower 3.5 million-colon coverage for motorcycles. Instead all motorcycle drivers will have to pay for the 6 million-colon coverage, said the institute.

The fixing of the insurance rate is a lengthy process that began in July.

The obligatory insurance covers damage to humans and not the vehicles themselves.

The basic passenger vehicle fee will be 19,958 colons, about $38, up 983 colons from this year’s rate.

Motorcycle drivers pay much more. Their rate this year is 78,374 colons, about $145, but it reflects a 21.9 percent cut from this year. Motorcycle organizations have organized protests in the past and forced the insurance institute to create the lower, 3 million-colon category.

Of course motorists will not get off this easy. The insurance fee is just part of the marchamo. The bulk of the amount is determined by the value of the vehicle.

The insurance fee averages only about 20 percent of the marchamo cost, said the institute.

The lion’s share goes to the Consejo de Seguridad Vial and there even is a percentage going to supposedly support wildlife. Motorists have to settle any unpaid traffic tickets, too.

Most expats purchase additional insurance.

With the establishment of the insurance fee for next year, the institute said that motorists now can begin to pay for the marchamo. The deadline is Dec. 31. without penalty.

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