As was indicated in my previous blog entry on this topic, we obtained our original drivers' licenses in Costa Rica when it was possible to do so on presentation of a foreign driver's license (British Columbia, Canada), a passport, and proof that an application for residency in Costa Rica had been made. Our passport numbers had to appear on these licenses because we had not yet obtained cédulas (Costa Rican ID cards).
Then the law changed. Now, you must have a cédula before you can get a Costa Rican driver's license. For some, this leads to the headache of having to leave the country every 90 days in order to keep driving in Costa Rica on the strength of a foreign driver's license. However, unlike ourselves, when these people finally get a cédula and their first Costa Rican license, it will be their cédula number which appears on the license and not their passport number. Later, when it comes time to renew such a license, the renewal process may be more streamlined than in our case. There will be no need for COSEVI to update its records to show a cédula number instead of a passport number.
The upshot is that it may not be necessary to go to a COSEVI office in order to renew a driver's license that already shows a cédula number. There will be no need for a "jefe" to update COSEVI's records. Instead, one should have the option to go to a participating branch of the Banco de Costa Rica which can handle the entire process – payment, photograph, etc. in one sitting. Go here for more information.
We were aware of the Banco de Costa Rica program but did not go to the bank to handle the process because we had visions of being told by the bank to go COSEVI to get the records updated with our cédula numbers, then come back.