Leaving the CA-4 for another 90 day visa
That means going to Costa Rica, Mexico or further. Though married to a Nica & retired, I choose not to pursue residence here. I actually like my birth country as much as Nicaragua. So I'm a tourist with a slew of Nica dependents.
Last year, when I 're-upped' at the CR border (NL-node/19771), I simply turned around, at no cost to me in CR, and walked back into Nicaragua, because I'd missed the last bus (6:30PM then, now 7:30PM, M-F) out of Peñas Blancas to La Cruz. No more, it seems. CR migracion demanded proof of transport out of country this time around before letting us enter. (And it had to be a capital to capital ticket, I believe.) Conveniently (in the diabolical sense of governments) three bus lines had booths outside the migracion office. U$25 each, cash dollars only. I was caught nearly short after blowing cash dollars on a Valentine's day tour of Granada's islettas + dinner. I was packing Cordovas & Colones. (Avoiding the moneychangers at border crossings can save a lot of hassle.)
But that, as it turned out, was a further problem. You see I had 64,000 in two-year old Colones. (That was some $115 dollars worth, still like new bills, issued by a CR ATM in 2011.) Ready to board the bus to La Cruz (fare = 450 each), I was shocked when the driver told me all my Colones were worthless. During the last two years CR had purged its Colones. (Had a colonoscopy proved many were bogus?) The driver accepted my last $20 bill (far older than the Colones) and returned to me 9,000 in colorful money + paperweight coins. The next day a CR bank gave me new paper money for the old 5,000 & 10,000 bills - they said the exchange is open til April. But the 2,000 bills (with sharks) could only be swapped out at BCR in San Jose. Drats - a loss, but offset by the appreciated value of Colones. Ticos called the shark bills souveigners - ja!
Our compulsory tickets (I chose Ticabus) out of El Mundo Tico could be used from Liberia or San Jose to Managua, but we had to make seat reservations days in advance. That was counter to our plan not to plan, to float & loiter whereever life seemed more succulent. Damned Ticos stole our liberty. We did a loop of Tilaran-Arenal-Fortuna-Monteverde leaving from Liberia during municipal festivals, which was nice, but CR is too expensive for relaxing.
It may be cheaper to buy visa extensions at MetroCentro - what's it cost for 30 days, &c.? Can one do a 90 day extension? I am interested in ways to beat this snag. I noticed the NicaExpress line also stopped in Liberia, and went direct to Leon & Chinandega. Maybe they offer something cheaper than $25 (or that could be purchased in advance with a credit card) that would satisfy the CR border minions.
Note: Last year (node/19771) Ocotal asked me if I had to "show a return bus ticket out of CR", so the rule may have been in effect then but somehow my late processing let me escape it. This is the first time in 7 years of crossing I got hit with this requirement.