In Costa Rica, the taxi service system is different than places like the US, Europe, Canada, and other sites.
Service is provided by the state, throughout concessions given to determinate people, single persons and not to companies, who are supposed to explode it to feed and provide for their families. People can only have one concession and can transfer to their families as a heritage.
Drivers employees are permitted, and some times, the concessionaire has a couple of drivers, so they don´t drive themselves. Usually, some owners get together on cooperatives, and they have “garages” with radio connections, and a phone, some of them are very old, from the mid-’70s.
Concessions are given by area, certain quantity, determinate by the number of people that live or work on the field. Rural areas have fewer taxis than cities. Drivers from a town, cannot pick up people in other cities, there are several cars, especially for disabled people, and in rural areas, cars are unique for hard conditions. Special concessions provide airport taxis in Costa Rica.
There is an office on the government that handles complains about taxis. If someone has a problem, or they feel they have been overcharged, or the drivers inappropriately treat them, disrespectful in any way, people can report the taxi, and driver and owner can be sanction, on a formal process, and owners can even lose their concession of taxi service if the behavior is frequent.
A government office establishes a taxi Rate, and it includes insurance to protect its clients, in case of an emergency, or an accident. All cars have a taxi meter programmed with the rate, and the price is determined by what the meter produces and is a combination of time and mileage (Kilometer in Costa Rica). Al taxi service has to be a charge on what the meter said, and you cannot agree on another rate, be it higher or even lower.
In the last ten or more years, people have been given a pirate service, with no insurance, and they have old and low maintain cars, with lower rates but with too many risks. Some of these people are bad people, have drug problems, and is very irresponsible. Fines are high, and they sometimes prefer to lose the car. In case of an accident, nobody takes responsibility, and you are on your own.
Also, now there is UBER, which is by the moment, a pirate service, and they sent it to court. As an illegal service, it questions the coverage of insurance, among other things, and coverage is to low. At the same time, regular taxis, no Airport taxis, are not entirely capable of handling tourist or foreign people. In general, in Costa Rica, transportation of people is regulated, and you are required a special permit to transport students, or tourists, or even workers.
For every kind of public transportation of people, you will find a set of requirements and regulations as well as insurance and coverage. Airport taxis have not only the skills, but the permit as well, to drive tourists around, can pick up people anywhere, and can take them wherever they want. When you are in Costa Rica, it is always better to make an official taxi, than any other, and much better, if you take an airport taxi, as they are much capable of understanding you and guiding you safely to your destination. Gorila Airport Taxi can give you the service you need, with the quality you want, give us a call, or make your reservation on this link.