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Costa Rica Exit Fee - Surprise On Credit Card Bill

Costa Rica Exit Fee - Surprise On Credit Card Bill

Old Feb 18, 10, 8:48 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Dec 2006
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Costa Rica Exit Fee - Surprise On Credit Card Bill

I'm not certain if this is limited to Costa Rica or if it applies elsewhere. The government allows you to put the exit fee on a Visa or Mastercard. However, they don't mention that it will be processed as a cash advance.

When I received my Visa bill this month I saw the charge for $54.70. However, I was also assessed a $10 minimum cash advance fee and a $1.50 minimum interest charge. I was able to get these charges removed after a lengthy wait.

Next time I ask and/or pay cash.
avja is offline  
Old Feb 20, 10, 1:33 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: SJO
Programs: CO Gold
Posts: 1,217
AFAIK its up to the bank to decide what is /is not considered a 'cash advance', in other words , the transaction has a 'transaction code' which explains to the bank what it is say 'phone/cable' , 'food' , etc etc and depending on such codes they decide if they consider it a cash advance or not

I work in an industry that sometimes had to deal with this issue and it ultimately boils down to the issuing bank
wolfie_cr is offline  
Old Feb 23, 10, 1:34 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: SJO/MGA
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signs

At some of the stations they now have a sign in English that says your bank may treat the transaction as a cash advance. Not sure when I first saw them but they are fairly recent.

At many of the hotels you can also pay your exit fee - $29 vs $26 but if you add to your hotel bill, you may get points as it is another "incidental" charge to your room account.
24.05.2004 is offline  
Old Feb 25, 10, 7:01 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 49
Originally Posted by avja View Post
I'm not certain if this is limited to Costa Rica or if it applies elsewhere. The government allows you to put the exit fee on a Visa or Mastercard. However, they don't mention that it will be processed as a cash advance.

When I received my Visa bill this month I saw the charge for $54.70. However, I was also assessed a $10 minimum cash advance fee and a $1.50 minimum interest charge. I was able to get these charges removed after a lengthy wait.

Next time I ask and/or pay cash.
I had the same thing happen leaving San Jose in Dec. 08 - there were no signs or anything about it being a cash advance at that time either. Nor was there any requirement to enter a PIN. I filed a dispute with my credit card company and was able to get the cash advance fee and associated interest charges reversed.

I've paid my exit fee at EZE with a credit card several times, so as far as I know this is a Costa Rican issue...
hannibal is offline  
Old Mar 9, 10, 7:00 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: San Jose, Costa Rica
Programs: AAdvantage Platinum
Posts: 1,650
The signs advising of the cash advance processing are up at every counter now, but it hasn't always been that way.
SJOGuy is offline  
Old May 4, 10, 8:32 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 26
Originally Posted by avja View Post
I'm not certain if this is limited to Costa Rica or if it applies elsewhere. The government allows you to put the exit fee on a Visa or Mastercard. However, they don't mention that it will be processed as a cash advance.

When I received my Visa bill this month I saw the charge for $54.70. However, I was also assessed a $10 minimum cash advance fee and a $1.50 minimum interest charge. I was able to get these charges removed after a lengthy wait.

Next time I ask and/or pay cash.
Cash is always the best way to go in paying the exit tax.
mdhaberkorn is offline  

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