Cost of Living - Panama
Costa del Este
More News - Cost of Living in Panama
Read one full example from Yahoo Forum -
Living in Central America
These prices are current for the
area in western Panama between
Boquete, David and Volcan.
Rent: $250 - $2500 month
The low end will get a tipico
Panamanian house with maybe a small
frig and stove and suicide shower in
a Panamanian neighborhood.
The high end is a fully furnished 3
bedroom house built to American
standards in a gated community by a
For about $800 you can get a fully
furnished, recently built or
remodeled 3 bedroom house in a
integrated neighborhood with hot
water and laundry.
For $500 you can get a fully
furnished 1 bedroom apartment on an
American's 5 acre estate.
Utilities may be included but if
not, electricity about $35-$50
month. Propane gas bottle $5.65 (may
last up to 2 months and is a
Food should run $50-$75 per week.
(By the way I had a Tico employee
here a few months ago that remarked
how cheap the food was in Panama
compared to Costa Rica).
You can eat out for $2.50 for a good
lunch and $10.00 for filet mignon
High speed internet may be included
in the rent of will run $30-$50
Satellite TV $25-$50 (or do as I do
and watch US TV and Netflix streamed
on my computer hooked to a 23 "
Maids are usually paid about $10-15
a day. Gardeners about the same.
Local live Theater and live bands.
Free to $10 per ticket
2nd run Movies in English or with
subtitles $2.75- $3.75 a ticket (in
Local Bus 35 cents to a $1.25
depending on destination. It costs
about $12.00 to ride an express bus
to Panama City from David. I think
about $15.00 to San Jose.
Local Taxis $1.00- $3.00 depending
Gasoline currently is about $3.60
gal. Diesel is $3.37
Good used cars/suvs under $10,000
are hard to find but are available.
Currently a 2004 Nissan X-trail in
good condition (I think) is listed
I have friends that live quite
comfortably on $1000-$1200 per month
but their house and vehicle is paid
I'm living in Puerto Armuelles
Panama, a busted banana town just
south of the Costa Rican border.
I bought a small wooden house, very
cheap, and remodeled it, not so
cheap somehow. Ownership of
expensive real estate a bad idea for
All utilities, power, water,
garbage, DSL internet, Claro
satellite TV, about $100 per mo.
Air Conditioned bus to the border
(Paso Canoas) 1 hour $1.75, to David
2 hours $3. Taxi in town 50 cents. I
do almost everything on my bike.
David Panama has a Pricemart with
many gringo products otherwise hard
to find. Ghirardelli Brownie Mix and
Chocolate Chips, Kirkland brand
Walnuts, Wisconsin Cheddar and Swiss
Cheese and good Tortilla chips are
my current addictions.
Fresh tuna head off $1.25#, small
shrimp head off $2#, fruit and
vegies cheap in season but potatoes
and tomatoes have gotten a little
spendy. Bananas almost free.
Processed and imported foods
probably more expensive than the US.
But how much can 1 person eat
Lunch at my local Fonda $1.50 for
rice, beans, soup, salad and a very
small piece of chicken. Perfect for
My very sick puppy visited the Vet
twice this week, huge IV antibiotic
injection, penicillin injection and
some other stuff $14.
He's doing fine now, and the locals
told me I over paid.
I'm driving a Skoda (VW/AUDI) diesel
that gets maybe 45MPG on the road
(the only place I take it) Paid 7K
for a 2006 with 50K miles. Servicing
any modern,especially European, car
is expensive anywhere in the world.
But Japanese cars sold here new, not
US models, much cheaper to service
Here is a $4500 car with 24K miles,
if it really is just like new, it
will probably last 10 years anyway.
With light use.
Good used cars are hard to find, but
here if your not in a hurry.
Minimum liability car insurance
$125-$`175 per year, cost to
transfer a used car to your name
$20. Diesel $3.38 gas a little more.
Annual inspection/tags about $50 if
I remember right.
Very easy to get around on public
transport, probably easier and more
fun than driving and taxis are
Panamas big advantage is that my
income is in dollars, if the dollar
continues to weaken, CA banks may
lose interest in changing dollars,
Mexico has already done so, claiming
money laundering as the reason.
The currency here in Panama is the
dollar so it should continue to be
Some expats spend a small fortune on
a US style house, shipping
containers, new cars etc. Others
scrape together an airplane ticket
and a few grand and do just fine.
Especially if they lost their job
were looking at going homeless, on
SS, up north with winter coming.
The answers relative to La Ceiba,
Honduras. We are 2 adults w 1 child
and usually 2 or 3 teenage
1) What is the cost of a typical
rental for a couple in a moderately
secure(non-gated community) area?
We spend 3600 lempiras/ US $190.00
for rent 3 bedroom 2 bath house
about 5 km from town. It is bigger
and nicer than the house we had in
2) Typical utilities for the above
rental for a couple.
Electricity about 1500 Lempiras/$80
US for Elext Stove, Washer, Dryer,
Large Fridge and too many TVs.
Water 200 Lempiras/ $11.00 US
Bottled water another 200 Lps/Mo
3) Food, entertainment
Food: about 5000 Lempiras/ US
$270.00 (Beer Extra) Milk very
expensive around a 18 Lps/ 1 dollar
a Liter A visit to restautarant/bar
for 2 about 600 Lps./$30.00 in a
Gringo place and 200 Lps/ $11.00 in
a locals bar/rest.
4) Cost of (once-a-week) household
help - No idea.
5) Is vehicle ownership feasible on
a budget, what type?
Used cars for mechanically inclined
from 25,000 lps / $1,300.00 and up
for around 1985 model. A good
running & looking car about 80,000
Lps/ $4,250.00 and up for c 2000
Gas is expensive 73.00 lps/$3.86 a
gallon for regular.
6) Public transportation costs -
And: My daughters private bilingual
school is 2,250 Lps/ $120.00 per
That's enough work for today!
Al - back to the hammock in La Ceiba,