I use 'WhatsApp' everyday. I chat and exchange pictures with family and stay in touch with old and new friends from around the world. It's my preferred method of mobile communication (FaceTime is a close 2nd) because it's so convenient and cheap. Although I use it daily, it wasn't until I moved to Costa Rica that I realize just how useful it could be.View full article →
While this isn't something I'll necessarily miss about Costa Rica, I wanted to write about it because going through the experience was a bit stressful at the time, but looking back it's actually quite funny.
We bought a used car when we first arrived here with the intention of selling it when we leave. With 1 month left, we decided to go ahead and start the process in case we ran into some difficulty selling it.
We posted ads on local facebook groups and put up 2 'se vende' signs on the car with our phone number and waited for replies. Right away we found people who were interested but their propositions were very interesting. We were prepared to negotiate on the price but what we weren't prepared for were conversations like this:
Potential buyer 1 (PB1): 'Hola, is the car still for sale?'
Hubby: 'Yes, when can you come see it?'
PB1: 'Right away. I can give you $3000 and my quad bike in exchange for your SUV'
Hubby: 'No thanks. I don't want a quad bike, I just want to sell my car.'
PB2: 'Hola, is the carro still for sale?'
Hubby: Si, when can you come see it?'
PB2: Right away. I can give you my Toyota Yaris and $2000 in exchange for your SUV'
Hubby: 'No gracias. I don't want another car, I just want to sell my car.'
PB3: 'Hola, is the car todavia a la venta?
Hubby: Yes, but I don't want to exchange it for another car!
PB3: I would do no such thing! I have a plot of land on the coast I could trade you for...
After a week of calls like this, we asked our friends if this was common practice in Costa Rica and they told us that we'd have better luck if we edited our post to say that we're leaving the country. So we did and we put it on a national used car selling website. The next morning Carlos called interested in buying the car, and nothing else. He and his uncle took the bus from Guanacaste (a 5 hour drive) to meet us and after agreeing on a fair price for all parties, drove back the same night.
In the end, everyone was satisfied with the transaction. Or do you think we should have looked into that plot of land...?