Public buses can be used to go to most places in Costa Rica. This is how locals without cars typically get around. Public buses are generally safe, but not as secure with your belongings. They are not as comfortable and slower than shuttle transfers. In most cases, you will not be dropped off at your hotel, which means you will have to catch a cab to the bus stop or from it.
There are many options for shared shuttle transfers for tourists, which are more comfortable, secure, and you will be picked up from and dropped off at your hotels (typically $40 – 60 per person). Private transfers are another option, though usually a little more expensive than shuttle transfers. Domestic flights are another option, though generally more expensive than shuttles or private transfers.
Here is a link to the official ICT public bus schedule download.
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