Night bus numero dos

Trip Start Sep 30, 2012
Trip End Oct 03, 2013

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Flag of Costa Rica  , Puntarenas,
Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Tica bus to Panama City traveled through the night from San Jose. It left Costa Rica at 11pm. I was in the luxury bus, which means you get a small pillow and small blanket. You definitely need the blanket because the buses are freezing. They have the air conditioner cranked up to the max! I may have to invest in a warm "night bus blanket" because I was so cold. I must have gotten some sleep though because the 5 hours to the border went really fast.
We arrived at the border at 4am and much to our surprise, the border didn't open until 6am. That was two hours of waiting in line because you couldn't wait on the bus. At least it was warmer outside. I don't know why they time the bus that way if you are just going to have to sit around and do nothing for hours on end. When they finally opened, they only had two lines going for many buses worth of people. It was not too bad to get through the Costa Rican side.
Then we walked across to Panama and went through the border there. This time they only had one line open. The guy checked everything. He wanted proof of departure, to see a credit card, asked multiple questions, and then took everyone's picture. Once everyone on the bus was done that process, we went into a small room with our luggage. They took attendance and wouldn't start going through the bags until everyone was there. Of course one old lady had just gotten back on the bus, so we had to wait for someone to go and get her. Then, customs went through everyone's bag. After just over 4 hours, we were back on the road!
The rest of the ride was pretty uneventful. Apparently with the luxury bus, you got breakfast (rice and beans and a hotdog) and lunch (a Big Mac). We finally reached Panama City at about 6pm local time. We gained an hour when we crossed the border.
I checked into my hostel, wondered around a bit, and went to bed. What a long bus ride. In hind site, I should have gotten off at David because I am going to wait until Ecuador to get my visa for Brazil. Of course, I just decided that last night, so it can't be helped. I will just have to back track a bit to see Panama.
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