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Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

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Dallas, Texas
3 posts
2 reviews
Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

I'll be traveling to southern peninsula de Nicoya in June, 2012 and will be staying in Montezuma. I have heard that there is only one ATM machine and it often runs out of money.

First question:

does anyone have advice on this area? I have never visited Nicoya peninsula.

Have you traveled there and brought your own cash , or enough for atleast half of your stay, and then re-up at the atm?

Is it safe to use a credit card, or is cash the smartest way to pay IN MONTEZUMA/MAL PAIS/SANTA TERESA?

I also heard that Banco de Costa Rica does not charge on their end for ATM fees.

Any advice on the area in general would be appreciated, or anyone who has been here and has some tips on money/what to bring?


Dearborn, Michigan
Level Contributor
583 posts
9 reviews
1. Re: Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

The ATM in Montezuma is quite often empty (or out of order). But Cobano is a bus trip away and they have a full service bank. If the CR banks are tacking any fees, they're really cheap just a buck or two (I think none).

Businesses in Montezuma will charge you extra for using a charge card. So use cash when you can.

I usually bring a few hundred dollars (and I usually have some leftover currency from a previous CR trip). Get some Colones at the airport ATM (there are 2 by the luggage pickup). Most tourist places will take US Dollars (and sometimes Euros).

The next time I see the ATM is full I get enough cash to pay for the hotel for the rest of the trip and immediately give them the money, but I give them my dollars first (now it's not my worry any more and all I have is local ca$h).

Montezuma is awesome! Much less dusty than St. Teresa or Mal Pais.


Hotel Montezuma Pacifico: A/C, wifi, hot showers, private bathrooms, digital safes and refrigerators. They're "downtown" but in the super quiet area (next to the church).

Transportation to/from SJO: Montezuma Expediations (they can arrange hotels by the airport too) has door to door (ish) shuttle services for $40-$45. Or the air conditioned public bus (the directo) from San Jose (nowhere near the airport) at 6am and 2pm from La Coca-Cola bus station (I think it stops by the airport about and 1/2 hour later, but if it's full, I don't know what happens).


Dearborn, Michigan
Level Contributor
583 posts
9 reviews
2. Re: Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

Part 2-

Here's a few links of MINE specifically about Montezuma, the area and some Costa Rica info too:

I blogged about lots of my trips at my blog http://GarySaid.com/tags/montezuma/ you can search there for "Costa Rica" too.

I even created a photo site, just for that area of Costa Rica http://MontezumaPacific.com/

A few dozen of my videos at YouTube of Montezuma www.youtube.com/user/garylapointe/videos…

And some cool 720(?) degree 3D-ish PhotoSynths at photosynth.net/userprofilepage.aspx…

but I don't know how to restrict to just Montezuma (but I'd guess half are from Costa Rica).

PS - Don't assume anywhere has air conditioning, TV or hot water (usually, just the shower).

Dearborn, Michigan
Level Contributor
583 posts
9 reviews
3. Re: Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

I did have someone write me and they didn't want to take a chance with the airport directo, so they took the taxi from the airport to La Coca-Cola bus terminal in San Jose for the 2pm bus and they say it DID NOT stop at the airport on the way to Montezuma...

I felt the need to correct myself since it seems it's not a sure thing.

The time I went from SJ to Montezuma and it DID STOP at the airport, it was the 6am directo. But both my buses back from Montezuma (2pm buses) did stop at the airport and they specifically asked when they were tagging my luggage (airport or coca-cola).



4. Re: Money in Montezuma - atm/ bank?

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