An update regarding our renewal of our drivers’ licenses this year
1. We paid our license fee at Banco Atlantida in Trujillo (much easier than doing so in Tocoa), and got an appointment date & time (9 a.m.) for the next day
2. Got there in time to have medical review done. Since this was a renewal, no need to take written & road tests. We paid lps. 700 each, but later learned if we negotiated, we could get for around lps. 350 each.
3. The new young man & woman in the traffic office were very pleasant. Everything was proceeding fine until the man asked to see our residency cards, which expire the following month. He said we needed to our renew residency first and come in with the new card (the temp. paper wouldn’t do). But our driver’s license expired today, and in the past it was never a problem to get the renewal when our residency expired within the month. Anyway, he said it wouldn’t be a problem, just show the expired license & all the renewal papers at the road block if we’re stopped. Of course we were – twice – on the way back to Trujillo. 2nd time we weren’t sure it was actually OK that license was expiring, but after they pondered it for a while, they finally let us go. Incidentally, everyone at the roadblocks was exceedingly pleasant & polite.
So we’ll be heading back in a month to renew our license, after we receive the new cards. At least we won’t have to stand in line and get a number. We met someone we knew from Trujillo who was getting his 1st license. They require a written & road test now (only a simple written exam when we first got our license) and of course the demand is high, so he went there at 3:30 a.m. to be in plenty of time, only to see a long line around the building. He just managed to sneak in with the last number given out for the day – number 30!