Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 04-30-2007, 09:58 PM   #1
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Panama Pensionado Visa question???

In order to obtain a visa that allows you to permanently live in Panama under the Pensionado visa plan, you must have $500 a month coming in from a pension (this cuts out business owners) or from a government entity. My question is: Does your Social Security count as a government entity on this plan??
Surely, one of us on this board has some knowledge of this...I hope.
__________________

__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-01-2007, 11:42 PM   #2
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 925
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

I'm 98% certain that SS income counts. But, I was also under the impression that Panama was in the process of making these visas harder to come by via higher income requirements, etc. And, I also seem to remember the program was in a state of legal limbo a few months ago when I gave up on it.

My suggestion: Find a good lawyer in Panama to help you with the process since it seems to be a paperwork nightmare. I believe there are at least a couple of board members here who are currently living in Panama and who will hopefully comment on this soon.

I was trying to make this work for me; but, since all of my income would have been from investments, I couldn't make it work for my situation. (I'm years away from SS age.)

Good luck; and, please post updates if you follow through with this retirement plan.
__________________

__________________
If there's one thing in my life that's missing; It's the time I spend alone
Sailing on the cool and bright clear waters; There's lots of those friendly people
Showin me ways to go; And I never want to lose your inspiration
CoolChange is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 07:47 AM   #3
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Thanks for your opinion. We are on the same page, anyway. Now if I can just find an email address for the Panamanian visa department, I will find out for sure. If I can get any "official" word, I will post it for all.
The thing I have noticed the most about Panama is that they are truly aiming for retirees and the boomer generation. I get the distinct impression that they are not really seeking the younger people there, but seeking older (I guess they figure) wealthier crowd.
Now, Argentina, that is a horse of another color and they do seem to be aiming for the younger, working, professional crowd. Just my impression is all.

Happened to look at the foreign currency section of the Wall Street Journal this morning, and didn't know that--like Panama--Ecuador, also, uses the U.S. dollar as currency. I wonder how many other countries use the U.S. dollar?
__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 08:07 AM   #4
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Say, I just found out this tidbit on the net. The adult population in Panama--over 64, that is--is just 6.3%. That is UNUSUALLY LOW. Maybe that is why they want that "old" money that boomers have. Interesting, eh?
__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 12:29 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,072
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Orchidflower,

I spent a month in Ecuador for language immersion and as part of that got courses in Ecuadorian history, etc. They do use the dollar - they did the 'dollarization' of their economy a few years ago - what's interesting is that the money you get there is very battered - it's almost as is the US sells their old money to them (of course they don't, but you'll notice the difference in the worn money down there). Saddest part is that with the dollarization as well as a few corrupt politicians, the middle class has significantly decreased there....the conversion caused a drop in some of the value of their savings/etc and a couple of Presidents just up and ran off with tax money. Their was still a bit of grumbling when I went down there in 2002. If you stayed on the economy, the prices were quite cheap, however, in Quito, there was the mall and some other restaurants, etc. that had US prices (almost CA prices) - I was surprised to see so many locals at those restaurants. Fortunately or unfortunately, my expectations for cost of living adjust to the local standards of where I live - so I got into the bargaining and would bitch at prices I considered too high for Ecuador (although I wouldn't do so in the US). They saw me coming, most of the time and of course put the 'tourist tax' on prices.

Other interesting factoid - Ecuador is the only 'former' OPEC nation - they left the 'club' in the 70's I believe.

Deserat
__________________
Deserat aka Bridget
“We sleep soundly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.” - George Orwell/Winston Churchill
deserat is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 03:29 PM   #6
Confused about dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 9
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Orchid,
CoolChange is correct, it does apply. You do have to jump through some hoops, but Pensionado Visas are available.
Some are begining to gripe about the dificulties of actually getting discounts though.
There's loads of info available in the various Panama related Yahoo Groups like Viviendo en Panama and Americans in Panama. Join them if you want to learn more about retiring in the area.
Also, there are a number of Panamaian Lawyers with concise Visa info on their websites--just do a search.
Cheers,
wm
__________________
Things are not as they seem........ nor are they otherwise.
wagemonkey is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 04:45 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,152
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Orchid, wagemonkey is spot on. Find out from other expats and even local lawyers what the rules are in practice. Getting written verification from an official about such a rule is an American practice and does not really work in the Latin world

In Mexico, you can also use a bank account with a high enough balance to renew your resident visa each year (showing enough to live on for that year). But if you go by just reading the rules, you would not know this. But I verified this with expats.

Deserat, dollarization has actually been successful in Ecuador -- since you left there has been only 3% per year inflation. Imagine living in an economy with up to 100% annual inflation with the Sucre. The current president is a leftist ideologue (Correa) opposed to dollarization, but he had to change his stance because dollarization has become popular and most see it as the only way to continue a stable economy.

Kramer
__________________
kramer is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 04:51 PM   #8
Full time employment: Posting here.
Arif's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 761
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

I moved to Panama back in 2005 and IIRC they increased the minimum amount to $700 but it still has to be a pension or ss to count towards the $700.
BTW- The population here is very young. I think they had a baby boom about 20-30 years ago.
If you want more information or questions you can look here:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/panamaforum/ or here
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/viviendo_en_panama/

If you have specific legal questions I can ask my lawyer here in Panama.
__________________
You take the blue pill - the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill - you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.
Arif is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 05:34 PM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
martyb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Bossier City
Posts: 2,182
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

I visited Panama a few years ago, had a friend who worked at Howard AFB up until we turned the Canal over. It was great, the fishing was awesome & the people I encountered were very friendly. My friend lived in Nuevo Emperador (guess I got that right?). If my wife was on the same page about this as me, I know where I'd be retiring to in about 5 yrs.
__________________
“Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”
-John F. Kennedy

“Hard work never killed anybody, but why take a chance?” - Edgar Bergen
martyb is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 06:07 PM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Has anyone been to both Panama City and Buenos Aires? Which city has more to offer? I've looked on the net, but have never been to either.

__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-02-2007, 06:40 PM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Just looked up the percentage of people living in the following that are 65 and over and still living:

Buenos Aires 10.6%
Panama City 6-6/3% (depending on whose chart you look at)
Malaysia 4.3%
Guadalajara, Mexico 4%

All four of these places are really pushing for Americans to retire there, too. Yikes! Makes me wonder what IS in their water in these places...gulp.... I'm not ready to "go" that young....
__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-06-2007, 09:47 PM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Florida
Posts: 249
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

The problem is not what's in the water (unless you're a tourist); stick to the bottled water. The problem, if it is a problem, with the booming indigenous population is that breeding is inexpensive entertainment in many parts of the world
__________________
I've got nothing against an honest day's work, provided that someone else does it.
pedorrero is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-06-2007, 09:50 PM   #13
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Brat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Portland, Oregon
Posts: 5,914
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidflower
Just looked up the percentage of people living in the following that are 65 and over and still living:

Buenos Aires 10.6%
Panama City 6-6/3% (depending on whose chart you look at)
Malaysia 4.3%
Guadalajara, Mexico 4%

All four of these places are really pushing for Americans to retire there, too. Yikes! Makes me wonder what IS in their water in these places...gulp.... I'm not ready to "go" that young....
Much of this is the native birthrate.
__________________
Duck bjorn.
Brat is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-07-2007, 09:59 AM   #14
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 43
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidflower
In order to obtain a visa that allows you to permanently live in Panama under the Pensionado visa plan, you must have $500 a month coming in from a pension (this cuts out business owners) or from a government entity. My question is: Does your Social Security count as a government entity on this plan??
Surely, one of us on this board has some knowledge of this...I hope.
Yes, social security counts. I hold a Panama Pension Visa. I obtained mine by a fixed term deposit with the National Bank of Panama.
__________________
PPT is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-07-2007, 10:09 AM   #15
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 43
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidflower
Has anyone been to both Panama City and Buenos Aires? Which city has more to offer? I've looked on the net, but have never been to either.

I have been to both. I enjoy Panama City better however you need to buy now if you plan on living there long term. The canal extension has been approved. Which means wage inflation for the locals and lots of highly paid people to manage the extension will be moving there. The extension is suppose to be completed by 2014 . I plan on selling my condo around this time next year (when all those highly paid people will be moving there ). I expect prices to be going up because retailers will be able too. Also, shortage of maids, drivers, gardners (etc) will drive those prices up. Supply/demand pressures.

Of course, after the canal is extension is completed there will be lots of layoffs and the highly paid people will move to the next job. Sounds like prices will go down but it is not fun to live in a place where something like this happens. I worked in Subic Bay when the U.S. military bases closed down and left - it was not fun. Crime, crime, crime. Hope I am wrong but look at Puerto Rico - they wanted the U.S. bases closed - the place is a mess now.
__________________
PPT is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-07-2007, 10:40 AM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Out of curiousity, what is the reason you prefer Panama City (you didn't say P. City, but I just added that) to Buenos Aires, if I might ask
Buenos Aires is supposedly wonderful, but those high taxes on every little thing just totally freaked me out. Visit, yes...living there, no!
__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-07-2007, 11:06 AM   #17
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 43
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidflower
Buenos Aires is supposedly wonderful, but those high taxes on every little thing just totally freaked me out.
Bingo.

Plus the Panama Pension Visa gives me great benefits. Example if I go to Panama then fly Panama to Thailand/Philippines/Singapore (as an example-which I try to do every two years ) and return I receive 50% off the airfare. . If you book your flight far enough out I have gotten $178 round trip from Miami.

So instead of paying full price from Miami to those locations I pull the cheapo and get 50% off. Which pays for the flight from Miami to Panama and a couple months of condo fees.
__________________
PPT is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-07-2007, 06:51 PM   #18
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 3,323
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Wow...the more I read, the more me likey.
I will be checking out Panama City mostly, I imagine, as I like to be near the cultural events like orchestras and art galleries...and damn! those restaurants with wonderful food that put fat on my hips.
Any opinions on Panama City for a 60ish single woman?
How are the Panamanians for friendliness? And I sure hope the Panamanian men aren't overly aggressive as I understand Argentenian men are with women. That macho stuff over-aggressive stuff goes over just so much with American women.
I speak very poor rudimentary Spanish, so I will assume I will have to learn Espanol pronto?
If nothing else, what a great place to plop for a few years.
__________________
Please consider adopting a rescue animal. So very many need a furr-ever home and someone to love them! And if we all spay/neuter our pets there won't be an overpopulation to put to death.
Orchidflower is offline   Reply With Quote
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???
Old 05-09-2007, 08:38 AM   #19
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 43
Re: Panama Pensionado Visa question???

Quote:
Originally Posted by Orchidflower
Wow...the more I read, the more me likey.
Hi, sorry for the delay in a reply work has been brutal lately. Anyway, I had my Panama lawyer send me the pension list:

As a qualified pensionado in Panama, you will be entitled to:

50% off entertainment--such as movies, theaters, concerts, and sporting events -- anywhere in the country
50% off closing costs for home loans and more...
50% off hotel stays from Monday through Thursday
30% off hotel stays from Friday through Sunday
30% off bus, boat, and train fares
25% off airline tickets
25% off at restaurants
20% off medical consultations
20% off professional and technical services
15% off at fast-food restaurants
15% off hospital bills (if no insurance applies)
15% off dental and eye exams
10% off prescription medicines

Concerning getting around, there is an outstanding bunch of expats that live in Panama.....extremely nice people. The best thing to do is go on the Yahoo boards and see the schedule for an expat meeting and try to work your vacation around that timeframe and attend. The hold them once a month. There is also an expat center where you can go and people can help you get around. Spanish: I find the cab drivers do not speak much English. So when you get a reservations at a hotel have them pick you up (should be around $20-25). Have the person at the hotel desk write the hotel address in Spanish on a card that you can put in your wallet to show the driver. Make sure you go see the canal.

*********For those who are emailing me I can not get into my box.

Here is a great website to get a nice place to stay:
Panama City Vacation Rentals Show only: Panama City Vacation Rentals Top
Panama City Spectacular View of Panama's Bay [#108258]5
2BR/2.5BA (Sleeps 4) $750-$850/wk US Dollars
Panama City Exclusive Residential Property for Vacation Rentals [#77407]4
4BR+/2.5BA (Sleeps 8-10) From $600/wk US Dollars
Panama City Furnished Apartment for Rent in Panama City, Central America [#57910]3
1BR+/1BA (Sleeps 2-4) $525/wk - $1285/mo US Dollars
Panama City Luxury High-Rise Apartment in Premier Panama City Neighborhood [#95678]3
3BR/3BA (Sleeps 6) $900-$1200/wk US Dollars
Panama City A+ Condo in Upscale Obarrio - Downtown - Banking Distric [#107794]3
3BR+/3BA (Sleeps 4-5) From $850/wk - $1750/mo US Dollars
Panama City Brand New Condo in Amador at the Entrance of the Panama Canal [#116555]3
1BR+/1BA (Sleeps 2-3) From $85/nt US Dollars
Panama City Torres Del Sol III [#116804]3
3BR+/2BA (Sleeps 6-8) $550/wk - $1600/mo US Dollars
Panama City Panama City, Panama Condo Located Affluent Punta Paitilla [#74639]
3BR/3BA (Sleeps 6) $700-$900/wk US Dollars
http://www.vrbo.com/vacation-rentals...america/panama

Also plan on going by the Crown Plaza hotel and see the travel agent on the right side of the entrance to book some day tours.

I will be going down there (sometime, sigh) this year. Just can not seem to get my work crap to slow down.

Take care. (I will not be posting much here anymore). My IT guy is going to cut me off (block me). I told him to give me a day.

God bless.
__________________
PPT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2008, 07:36 PM   #20
Confused about dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 9
Retired in Boquete Panama sez:
We sold everything we owned ( 2 condos and 4 vehicles ) and bought a home in the mountains of Panama in the city of Boquete, Chiriqui.

I found the home searching on the internet: Craigslist Panama and Viviun Panama. Once I found the place that looked like I'd like, I visited. In 2 1/2 months start to finish we had liquidated everything and had our visa applications and documents in. We've been here now 1 year and LOVE IT. We have our Pensionado Visas based upon my Soc Sec check alone as my husband is not 62 yet. The minium amount is now $1000 for the head of household and a small additional for each dependant (spouse)/ month.

You can find numerous attorneys that do this visa work, and I advise contacting more than one. Search the net. E-mail them. Visit here.

A good attorney is essential...

Cost of living? Two of us live well on $1200/month. House and car are paid for.

ABLeever
__________________

__________________
ABLeever is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
HI from PANAMA JOE_PANAMA Hi, I am... 7 03-02-2007 02:47 PM
How to answer questions. ???With a question or assignment????? dex Forum Admin 2 02-25-2007 08:56 AM
MBNA switched from Visa to American Express without permission SonnyJim FIRE and Money 7 09-25-2006 12:01 AM
Retire in Panama Arif Other topics 12 08-25-2006 06:40 AM
Retirement Paradise is Panama pagar Life after FIRE 93 02-23-2006 05:58 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:59 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.