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Panama Retirement

In 2005, and for the sixth consecutive year, Panama reigned atop International Living’s Retirement Index. International Living is a media and events company that provides living, overseas investment and retirement information. The company uses eight factors for its judging criteria: Cost of Real Estate, Cost of Living, Infrastructure, Safety & Stability, Climate, Health Care, Culture & Entertainment and Special Benefits for retirees. Stating that with this criterion, it is easy to understand why retiring in Panama is favored by so many people from North America. The magazine noted that Panama’s retirement benefit program is the world’s most generous for retirees, the cost of living is low, the land and beaches are beautiful, the people are friendly, and the capital is superior to other cities in the region. From the International Living survey, highlights of the factors are:

Cost of Real Estate
The cost of real estate in Panama is incredibly low. It is easy to find new homes in beautiful subdivisions for $20,000. While the construction differs from that in the US, the homes in Panama equally beautiful and maintenance free. Apartments tend to be more expensive, but with the low cost of homes, retiring in Panama is quite affordable.

Cost of Living
While some “creature comforts” in Panama are expensive, those retiring in Panama will find the cost of many things to be incredibly reasonable. Most restaurants, clothing, utilities and items for the home are priced well below the same items in the US. American restaurants tend to be similarly priced with those in the US, but it is possible to dine in nice Panamanian restaurants for $2.00 or $3.00 per person. All in all, Panama retirement has a very low cost of living.

Infrastructure
Due to 100 years of American presence, much of the infrastructure in Panama is remarkably similar to the US. There is the typical array of streets, highways, and of course, potholes. Most cities have electricity, telephone, cable and Internet.

Safety & Stability
Because Panama has a very stable economy and a low level of poverty, the retiree in Panama will find it to be as safe, or safer, that areas in the US. The government has been active in fighting drugs and as a result, there is less overall crime.

Climate
Panama retirement offers a wonderful change of climate for most from the US. Gone forever are the days of snow, cold and ice! Retirees in Panama will generally find two seasons; rainy and dry. In the interior, the humidity in the rainy season and the heat in the dry season can both be oppressive, but air conditioners are quite common. In the mountains, the temperatures are more seasonable.

Health Care
This is a big advantage for Panamanian retirees. Health costs are substantially lower than the US, whether for basic health care or cosmetic purposes. In fact, Panama enjoys an increase each year of people visiting for health care and cosmetic surgery.

Culture and Entertainment
Retirees will find Panama has a rich history, diverse culture, and a multitude of cultural and entertainment opportunities. From the holidays to Carnival, which is held in February, there are many special events for those retiring to Panama to enjoy.

Benefits for Retirees
As previously mentioned, Panama is the world leader in benefits for retirees. They include:
• 50% off entertainment anywhere in the country (movies, theaters, concerts, sporting events, etc.)
• 30% off bus, boat, and train fares
• 25% off airline tickets
• 50% off hotel stays Monday through Thursday, 30% off Friday through Sunday
• 25% off restaurant meals
• 15% off at fast-food restaurants
• 15% off hospital bills (if no insurance applies)
• 10% off prescription medicines
• 20% off doctors' consultations
• 15% off dental and eye exams
• 20% off professional and technical services
• 50% off closing costs for home loans

Panama is an excellent retirement choice, and according to International Living, it is the best in the world. For six straight years, retirees have found Panama’s attributes make it the perfect to come and stay, not only for a visit, but forever.

We can arrange a Panama retirement visa for as little a $900 through a special relationship wiht local Panama attorneys. Please contact us for more information.