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Why Retire in Los Santos, Panama? Lifestyle and Cost of Living

Los Santos Pedasí, with its serene ambiance and a small population of roughly 2,500 residents, is the epitome of idyllic rural life. The village is enveloped by lush green fields, providing a perfect backdrop for a Retire in Panama and enjoy of the nature-filled lifestyle.

Whether you prefer the quiet, laid-back environment of Pedasí or the lively, interconnected expat communities found in other regions, Panama ensures a rich and fulfilling experience for all its international residents.

Is Retiring in Los Santos, Panama Safe?

Retiring in Pedasí, Panama is generally considered safe, attracting many expats seeking a tranquil and secure environment. The village boasts a low crime rate, which contributes to its reputation as a peaceful haven. Residents often highlight the strong sense of community, where neighbors look out for each other, enhancing the feeling of safety. Additionally, local authorities are responsive and work diligently to maintain the area’s security, providing peace of mind for retirees.

Beyond personal safety, Pedasí offers a reliable infrastructure that supports a secure lifestyle. The village has access to essential services, including healthcare facilities, which are crucial for retirees.

The local healthcare system is well-regarded, with several clinics and hospitals available within a reasonable distance. The combination of a low crime rate, a supportive community, and accessible healthcare makes Pedasí a compelling choice for those looking to retire in a safe and welcoming environment.

Panama City to Pedasí

Traveling from Panama City to Pedasí can be done through various transportation methods, each with its own cost and duration. The most convenient option is to fly from the closest airport to Pedasí, Panama, which is Scarlett Martinez International Airport in Rio Hato, followed by a two-hour drive.

Alternatively, direct bus services run from Panama City to Pedasí, offering an economical choice, with fares around $15 and a travel time of approximately five hours. For more flexibility, renting a car costs about $30-$50 per day, taking around 4.5 hours to drive.

Los Santos, Panama Rentals and Real Estate

Los Santos offers a range of rental options to suit various budgets and preferences. Monthly rental costs for a small apartment start around $500, while larger homes or villas can range from $1,200 to $2,500, depending on location and amenities. For those looking to purchase property, prices vary widely. 

A modest home might cost around $150,000, whereas beachfront properties and luxurious estates can exceed $500,000. The influx of expats has led to increased demand, raising property values in some areas.

Investing in real estate in Pedasí can be a rewarding venture, given the area’s growing popularity. Many expats are drawn to Pedasí’s charm and safety, further driving up property prices. Despite the rising costs, the region still offers attractive opportunities for both rental income and long-term investment. Whether renting or buying, Pedasí provides a serene and picturesque environment, making it an appealing choice for retirees and investors alike.

Cambutal, Los Santos, Panama

Cambutal, Los Santos, Panama, offers a quieter alternative to Pedasí, with its stunning beaches and tranquil atmosphere. This hidden gem is becoming popular among expats, leading to a gradual increase in property values and rental prices, yet it remains relatively affordable.

Purio, Panama

Purio, Panama, is a small, picturesque town close to Pedasí. It’s known for its peaceful ambiance and beautiful landscapes. While less developed than Pedasí, it offers potential for growth, making it an interesting option for real estate investment and rentals.

Cost of Living in Los Santos, Panama

The cost of living in Pedasí, Los Santos, Panama, is significantly lower than in the USA. In Pedasí, monthly expenses for a single person typically range between $1,200 and $1,800, covering housing, utilities, food, and transportation. 

This is a stark contrast to many parts of the USA, where similar costs can easily exceed $3,000 per month. The lower cost of living in Pedasí allows retirees and expats to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle without the financial strain often experienced in more expensive countries.

Expense CategoryCost in Pedasí (USD)Cost in the USA (USD)
Housing
1-Bedroom Apartment$500 – $800$1,200 – $2,000
3-Bedroom House$1,200 – $2,500$2,500 – $4,000
Utilities
Electricity/Water$50 – $100$150 – $300
Internet/Cable$40 – $80$60 – $100
Food
Groceries$200 – $400$400 – $600
Dining Out$10 – $20 per meal$15 – $30 per meal
Transportation
Public Transport$1 – $2 per ride$2 – $3 per ride
Gasoline (per gallon)$3.50 – $4.00$3.00 – $4.00

This table highlights the affordability of living in Pedasí, making it an attractive destination for those seeking a high quality of life at a lower cost.

Plan Your Retirement in Los Santos, Panama

Before deciding to retire in Los Santos, Panama, it is advisable to spend a few months as a tourist to get to know the region better. Explore different areas of Los Santos to determine which one best suits your lifestyle. If living in the mountains doesn’t appeal to you, visit places like Pedasí, Cambutal, and Purio. Travel and get to know every corner to ensure you make the best decision.

The best time of year to visit Los Santos is between December and April when the weather is drier and more pleasant. Take advantage of your stay to lodge in the hotels of Pedasí and experience local life.

Things to Do and Places to Visit

  • Explore the Beaches of Pedasí: Enjoy Playa Venao and Playa El Toro.
  • Visit Isla Iguana: A natural paradise with snorkeling and wildlife spotting.
  • Stroll Through Cambutal: Relax on its tranquil beaches and try surfing.
  • Discover Purio: Get to know this picturesque town and its natural surroundings.
  • Participate in the Carnival of Las Tablas: Experience one of Panama’s most important festivals.
  • Tour Sarigua National Park: Observe unique landscapes and learn about local history.
  • Taste the Local Cuisine: Savor typical dishes in local restaurants.
  • Visit the Church of San Atanasio: A beautiful example of colonial architecture.
  • Buy Local Handicrafts: Take home unique souvenirs from Los Santos.
  • Join Fishing Excursions: Experience sport fishing in the waters of Pedasí.

When You’re Sure About Retiring

Once you have decided to retire in Los Santos, Panama, it is crucial to have the advice of a reliable Panamanian lawyer specializing in immigration and property transactions. An expert lawyer will guide you through the necessary procedures to obtain residency and ensure the legal and secure purchase of your home in Pedasí.

Additionally, they will help you understand local laws and protect your interests in all transactions, ensuring a smooth transition to your new home.

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