My first car purchase here in Costa Rica would be quick and easy – so I thought. Wonderful naive. The search for the best truck was a real adventure. Part 1:
Guanacaste, beautiful Guanacaste, now in the summer time with dusty roads and deep potholes. For four weeks I explored the area around Playa Barrigona on foot or with my rickety pink bike. Sometimes on the back of a truck. But that meant also: hold your breath and close your eyes! – as soon as another vehicle came thundering down the road. By the way, in the high season there are quite a lot of them. Enough of that! A car had to come!
Said and done … or? Wrong! Sure, I read up on the topic … I need a lawyer, always check the inspection sticker for seller and possible traffic tickets. And: Cars have a high luxury value here in Costa Rica – this also applies to some rusty roadside trucks. So it was quite clear to me that I would have to dig deeper into my pocket than planned in Germany. Good, but buying that should be easy at least. Credit card over the table, car key in the hand. Or so I thought! Oh Elena, how naive!
I took a backpack and off I went to San Jose to find my new friend in the car mecca of Grecia. Of course, for peanuts. And really: one car Usados next to the other. Cars like sand by the sea. Big, small, shiny, rickety – but all for a hefty price! 300,000 miles on the clock? Hey, but still for $ 6,500. The first beads of sweat formed on my forehead – and not from the heat.
So I checked gap measurements (yes, I know what I’m talking about), examined the undercarriage, shook here and there once. Just pretend that I’m a real pro. In addition to the shady characters with fat Rolex on the wrist right out of the move, there were also real gentlemen among the sellers. One would even rush with me to the next bank … to clarify the financing … because, yes, you cannot buy a car in Costa Rica by credit card.
But the sparks between me and my potential four-wheeled lover just didn’t flow. And so I became more and more depressed. Was Ben possibly right? He had shook his head: “Plan a week time. You do no buys a car fast in Costa Rica!” … Ahhhh