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Visa & Residency Guide to Panama

Published December 3, 2020 in Panama , Visa & Residency Information - 0 Comments

Want to know how to live in Panama on a tourist visa or with residency?

This article will provide you with the basics of how to achieve that.

 By first talking about living in Panama on a tourist visa…

Then moving onto the nuances of that…

Such as the possibility of doing a visa run….

And also the consequences of overstaying your visa…

Before ending it on the topic of the temporary and permanent residency programs that exist.

For those who wish to live in this country longer than what a tourist visa allows…

And do to so legally and with more security.

So let’s get to it!

Tourist Visa in Panama

If you want to visit Panama, you can stay in the country for 180 days upon entry.

However, if you want to extend it beyond that, you can apply for an extension and get it extended for an additional 30, 60 or 90 days.

Overstay The Visa?

If you overstay your visa in Panama, you can be charged an additional 50 USD per month of overstay.

And risk getting deported also!

As you can read about in this article of Panama cracking down on people overstaying here.

Visa Run?


You can do a visa run.

Just leave Panama and head on over to Costa Rica and come back for another 180 dyas.l

Or go to other direction and end up in Colombia…

A bit up north too on towards Barranquilla to meet up with some sexy Colombian gals.

And when your fun is over, head back to Panama for another 180 days.

So the short answer is yes – visa runs are possible.

Residency in Panama

So if you want temporary residency in Panama, here are some of the programs to keep in mind that will help you achieve that:

  • Pension/Retirement Visa: You can get this visa if you are over 18 and have a lifetime pension or annuity that provides at least 1,000 USD per month and an additional 250 USD for each dependent.
  • Friendly Nations Visa: If you come from any of the 50 countries that are part of this program, then you can deposit 5,000 USD for yourself and an additional 2,000 USD for each dependent in Panama.
  • Person of Means Visa: If you invest 300,000 USD for yourself and 2,000 USD for each dependent into Panama real estate or deposit that money into a Panama bank CD.
  • Professional Employment Visa: If you have a college degree and work for an employer for 2 years in Panama, you can qualify for this visa.
  • Reforestation Investor Visa: If you invest at least 80,000 USD into a reforestation project that covers at least 5hectares of titled land certified by the government, then you can qualify for this visa.
  • Business Investor Visa: If you do not qualify for the Friendly Nations Visa and still want to start a business in Panama, then you can set up a corporation with 160,000 USD of paid-in capital at minimum, then you can qualify for this visa.
  • Marriage: If you marry someone who is a citizen of Panama, then you can get permanent residency.

From my understanding, any of these paths can get you residency – both temporary and permanent – in Panama.

And that’s all the basic info!

Got any questions or comments? Drop them below.

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Best regards,


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