Applying for a tourist visa to Panama can seem daunting, but with the right preparation and a thorough understanding of the process, it is entirely manageable. This guide aims to provide comprehensive information to facilitate a smooth application process for potential tourists to this enchanting country.
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The duration of your stay in Panama depends on your nationality. For European and Latin American visitors, the term of stay is 90 days. However, visitors from the USA and Canada can stay for up to 180 days, no need to apply for a tourist visa.
What you need to do
- Check if what you plan to do in Panama is allowed as a Tourist Visa
- Check you meet the eligibility requirements.
- Check if you need to apply for a visa to visit Panama.
- Apply for a Tourist Visa at the consulate in your country – if you need one.
What you can and cannot do
You can visit Panama as a tourist:
- For tourism, for example on a holiday or vacation
- To see your family or friends
- To offer volunteer services with a recognized charity for a duration not exceeding 30 days
- To transit through Panama en route to another destination
- For specific business-related tasks, such as participating in a meeting or interview
- Po participate in an educational exchange program
- To engage in a recreational course that lasts no longer than 30 days, such as a dance class
- You can visit Panama as a Tourist Visa for tourism, business, study (courses up to 3 months) and other permitted activities.
- You can usually stay in Panama for up to 3 months. You might be able to apply to stay for longer in certain circumstances.
- Do paid or unpaid work for a Panama company or as a self-employed person
- Claim public funds (benefits)
- Live in Panama for long periods of time through frequent or successive visits
Check if you meet the eligibility requirements
When entering the country, you will need to present the following documents to the Inspector of the National Migration and Naturalization Service of the Ministry of Public Security.
- A tourist visa, authorized as per the situation.
- A return ticket or travel ticket back to your country of origin or continuation of the journey.
- Required financial solvency, which should not be less than five hundred balboas ($500.00) or its equivalent in a credit card, bank reference, work letter, or traveler’s checks. In addition, depending on nationality, another amount may be required.
- A passport or travel document valid for at least 6 months from the date of Tourist visa acquisition.
In certain situations, the Migration Inspector might ask for the payment receipt from the hotel where you’ll be lodging.
- Panama with a visa stamped in their passport, it implies that the foreign national has two alternatives:
- Apply for the visa at the Panamanian Consulate and can arrive in Panama with the visa already stamped in their passport.
- If the person belongs to a country that is classified as a visa only, they have no option, to enter Panama they must previously apply at the Panamanian Consulate, to have the visa stamped.
In all cases, other entry requirements to the country must be met. (Financial solvency, passport with a minimum validity of six months, and return ticket to their country).
Check if you need a visa to visit Panama
Depending on your nationality, you’ll either:
have to apply for a Tourist Visa before you travel to panama be able to visit Panama for up to 3 months without needing a visa
USA and Canada Citizen: Are able to visit Panama for up to 6 months without needing a Tourist visa.
Before applying, ensure if a visa is needed.
If you do not need a visa, you must still meet the Tourist Visa eligibility requirements.
If you have to apply for a tourist visa
You must apply for a Tourist Visa at the embassy of Panama in your country of residence, before you travel to Panama.
- A Tourist visa costs (B/.50.00), which is equivalent to $50 US dollars, for up to 3 months.
- You can pass through Panama to another country on a Tourist visa. If transiting is your only reason for coming to Panama.
Documents and information you’ll need to apply
You must have a passport or travel document that is valid for the whole of your stay in Panama. There must be a blank page in your passport for your Tourist visa.
The following details will be required in your digital application:
- Complete the visa application form.
- You’ll need to submit the original and a full copy of your passport or travel document with a minimum validity of three (3) months.
- A confirmed air reservation with a travel continuation itinerary or electronic ticket is required.
- A copy of your identification document or residency card from your home country is also needed.
- Provide three (3) photographs
- A payment of fifty balboas (B/.50.00) for immigration services is required at the time of presentation to the National Migration Service.
- Proof of financial solvency for your maintenance and sustenance according to the term of stay in the country, which cannot be less than five hundred balboas (B/.500.00), can be demonstrated with one of the following options:
- A certified check or bank draft in the applicant’s name.
- Traveler’s checks in the name of the applicant.
- A bank certification, with the last month’s statement reflecting available balances.
- A credit card with the last month’s statement showing available balances.
- A work certificate with the latest salary receipt or accreditation of being an independent worker, in the case of being an employee of a public or private entity.
- A document demonstrating the pension or retirement with its payment receipt; if the person is retired or a pensioner.
- If self-employed: the last year’s tax return.
- A bank reference, if the person is a trader.
Depending on your situation, you might also need to provide:
- The latest permit approved by the immigration authority (if applicable).
- A confirmed hotel reservation (if applicable).
- If applicable, an invitation letter, which can be made by: Temporary or permanent residents or Panamanians.
- A letter of responsibility, certification proving kinship, and proof of financial solvency if the person is economically dependent.
- When it comes to a minor, the application for this tourist visa must be made by one of the parents or the person who has duly accredited custody and upbringing.
The duration it takes to receive a decision
After submitting your Tourist Visa application at the consulate in your country, confirming your identity, and providing the required documents, you can generally anticipate a decision on your visa within sixty (60) business days.
It’s important not to finalize your travel plans until your Tourist Visa has been officially granted.
In the event that the visa is approved, you are required to personally visit the consulate in your country to have the Tourist Visa stamped in your passport.
Resolution 22706 of September, 2021
Resolution 22068 of September, 2021
Resolution 1017 of March, 2000
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