Be sure to ask staff at your hostel or hotel where is recommend to explore, and where’s not so safe. Do not get into taxis that wait outside of hotels or malls. These are all reputable radio taxi companies that you can use in Panama City. Close, Airbnb's Most Unique Properties Worldwide. If you’re going out hiking by yourself, make sure you go well prepared and pack enough supplies. Pickpockets are a common occurrence on the streets of Panama and tourists are recommended to remain vigilant at all times when on the street. Before you do anything, you should definitely do your research. I recommend visiting and considering for retirement…. Even so, there are things about Panama that may make you think twice about visiting this country: theft from tourists is common, pickpocketing happens, muggings can occur too. Accessing your money may seem simple, especially if you’ve just got one bank account and one card to get to it, but you should consider having multiple bank accounts. As a solo traveller, anywhere in the world, you should make sure that you keep in touch with people back home. As you might be able to guess, Panama is family friendly society. These are going to be the sorts of places where serious crime may occur, and you will put yourself more at risk by wandering into a quiet area of a town. Nature can pose a significant risk to your safety in Panama especially if you don’t know what you’re up against. Basically, the more rural you get, the less likely you are to find anything medical. The best hospitals and clinics, obviously, will be the private ones. Try to walk at night with a group or get a well-reputed taxi company to whisk you home. You have to buy a Rapi-Pass; hit up trajetametrobus.com or buy at supermarkets and bus stops (costs USD $2). You could even have a tour organised when you plan to visit, meaning you get to travel around with a group of people and led around by a knowledgeable guide (our recommendation). It’s really just not worth driving in any Panamanian city. Taxis. Even if you go with a group, you can still get unwanted attention. An internal investigation into an international arms trafficking network in October 2018 illustrated the country’s ongoing challenges with confronting corruption and organized crime.” In summary: Is Panama safe? We will be staying in an all inclusive, and most likely will be doing a few organized excursions. Facts regarding safety in Panama. I love my country but it has really declined since the Americans left. It feels like something from a movie and is freacking awesome. Don’t feel like you need to tell strangers everything about yourself, don’t accept drinks from strangers, and be firm if someone is trying it on. Keep away from these. Make sure that it’s in a good area of town, a secure building with staff that people mention (positively) in reviews; make sure reviews are glowing and top-notch; and if you want somewhere social that’s great for solo travellers, make sure that this is reflected in reviews. In total I spent 16 nights in Hostels, which summed up to a total price of $250. Answer 1 of 14: My husband and I recently booked a trip to Panama in April 2019. To be honest, we would recommend a guide. They go out of their way to please you. Much better than a lot of major countries especially the US. In general, there is a high level of violent crime. 1. Have an emergency stash of cash as well as an emergency credit card, too. Travelling by yourself means that you can have your very own adventure. You may even get to meet up with a local or a fellow female travelling the same place and time as you are! You may be off doing some cool thing, travelling around the world, but going off-grid is not cool (or safe). With that in mind, it’s not somewhere we would recommend for first time female travellers. Vast swathes of Panama are safe to visit at the moment, but there are still areas which are best avoided. However, crime rates are high, and it’s not just the petty crime that’s the issue: violent crime is a common issue in Panama, though it’s on its way to getting eradicated. Single-use plastic bottles are a huge threat to Marine Life – Be a part of the solution and travel with a filter water bottle. You can even catch the Metrobus from Albrook International Airport to pretty much any community around the capital. As a female, I am always cautious. Wearing jewellery, looking rich, anything that singles you out as someone with money is not a good idea on a day to day basis. There’s a lot of chances to get access to good healthcare in the capital, as well as good clinics and pharmacies. With great people. In 2012, Connie and Mikkel Moller hopped on a bus from Panama City. Though the buses are fancy and safe, the bus stations themselves are hotbeds for crime, so alighting and departing (and waiting) is when you’ll need to be vigilant. There’s enough going on to keep you busy, and enough in terms of other travellers and friendly locals that you won’t feel lonely, but it won’t be 100% awesome all the time. The recent additions of the Metrobus and El Metro in the capital show that the country is, albeit gradually, on the rise. Panama City is known to have some good hospitals and clinics, but medical facilities outside of the capital are limited. Natural disasters, man thanks goodness, I don’t remember the last time we faced a natural disaster in the country. Do be sure to read the terms and conditions to make sure that the policy covers your needs. From taxis and transport to advice for solo female travellers and even families, our guide has you covered. © 2020 Copyright by Travel Safe - Abroad. Stay away from poorly lit and deserted streets and areas and from people that are visibly intoxicated or under the influence. Was visiting Panama this past March, just when Covid 19 hit. Public transportation in Panama is generally safe but as follows you'll find some advice that applies to anywhere you travel to. Do you have a list of places that are a must for first-time visitors? When it comes to train travel, Panama City has an underground subway system called – you guessed it – El Metro. Of course have your wits about you in any big city (Panama City and L.A. alike). Avoid these and find yourself a local restaurant that doesn’t offer up bland international cuisine. Economically stable country and pick pocketing as you mention is really low. Don’t walk away from populated areas of a town or city. Panama has resumed most transportation options (including airport operations and re-opening of borders) and business operations. There is a chance that serious crime could occur in these sorts of places. Have traveled there a few times now and it felt very safe. It also includ… With all those tourists coming in, obviously it’s in Panama’s interests to keep them safe. Yes there are some areas to avoid like Colon, the Columbian border area and some neighborhoods in Panama City. You should make sure that it’s located in a safe area of town and that the staff have been commented on as nice and helpful – things like that matter. The short answer is YES. It’s normal for a taxi driver to pick and choose who they drive around, depending on their destination, of course. Just like the states! Response re politicians. This isn’t like where you’re from (most likely, anyway) and will, therefore, require you to be more careful and cautious than usual. In these areas, you should also avoid ice cubes. We have used World Nomads for years now and I have personally made several claims. Losing your money anywhere in the world sucks. In general, you should only eat it at coastal locations where you can ensure that it’s been caught the same day. Research is key. In general, Panama is safe for families. When it comes to getting around, we wouldn’t recommend a stroller or pushchair; sidewalks are narrow, damaged or nonexistent in some places, and traffic can be dangerous in cities. Speaking of which…. All in all, we wouldn’t recommend driving in Panama. No plastic cutlery please – No hay cubiertos de plástico por favor. In fact, it’s one of the safest countries in the central American region – people are friendly and there are plenty of laid-back rural areas to explore. That would be the Active Roots Security Belt. You should keep our Panama-specific solo female traveller tips in mind…. Look at reviews from other female travellers, make sure they’re positive, and choose according to what suits you. There is some good infrastructure for travelling around here as well as a fair few family friendly resorts. Honduras and El Salvador are extremely violent countries and the unsafest in Latin America. One thing to note about rural roads, on the other hand, is the habit of other drivers flashing headlights at you (indicating police ahead). The border with Colombia (specifically Darien Province) is understandably a dangerous area. Generally, Panama is a safe country to visit. The people here are friendly and the medical services, especially in Panama City, are great. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Drivers may claim to not have change (which may be true depending on the size of the bill you’re trying to use). Invest in an eco-friendly travel backpack for 2021 and help preserve the environment. Bocas del Toro is a unique visit also. Why not get a quote from them yourself? It’s best to get a driver to take you on a tour; the Darien Gap area, in general, is actually one of the most notoriously impassable stretches of land on Earth. Is it safe to go to Panama City? Although locals might wear more revealing, skimpy clothing, as a traveller to the country you’ll get more attention from Panamanian men for dressing the same way. ‘Express kidnappings’ are also high and apparently 90% of them go unreported. There have been on-going protests in Panama regarding the hwy, especially around the town of Chorrera where there have been dozens of fatal accidents in the past 3 years, most involving multiple fatalities. If you don’t feel like the stress of travelling around the country and organising things for yourself, then there are always resorts to fill your every need. Wash your hands! The bottom line appears to be that Panama remains relatively safe when compared to other Central American countries but caution is warranted. Outside of the large cities, however, the level of medical care can be very limited. You can buy same-day bus tickets from the station you’re departing. Not standing out, not being oblivious to situations and trusting your gut will help. Being in Panama, therefore, means not living how you would back home. Opened in 2014, El Metro serves 16 stations across two lines: one runs west-east from Albrook to San Isidra, the other runs between Albrook the City of Knowledge. It seems like the simplest ever thing, but your hands pick up a lot of bacteria and germs even just on a normal day, so – especially if you’ve been on public transport, or trekking – ensure that you wash your grubby mitts before you eat. Panama has loads on offer for any kind of traveller. Opt to go on a tour, which will take you on adventures into jungles and all sorts of other exciting things. But in general female travellers find Panama to be pretty safe. One factor that I always consider when booking accommodation, is how easy it will be to socialise. Make sure that you park in a safe space and don’t leave anything on display in the car; don’t leave anything valuable in the car, just in case. Whilst it is safe to visit, the stats could seem scary. I come from a more dangerous country. If seafood tastes or smells weird, then stop eating – trust us: getting ill from seafood is not fun at all. It’s just not a good idea. I enjoyed that tour more than any of my other tours, Spain, Germany. the whole of Panama based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks. Then again, those rainforests also make for a great place for Colombian rebel groups to hang out in. Not standing out, not being oblivious to situations and trusting your gut will help. Read our full review of the GRAYL GEOPRESS! Taxis in Panama do not have meters. Where Is The Toilet? There are a few things to keep in mind if you want to travel to Panama. There are lots of hazards to look out for. Of course, it’s not all amazing all the time. The biggest health risks in Bocas are dehydration, sunburn, and minor infections; or can be related to the inherent dangers of the ocean or partying too hard. Furthermore, because the buses and taxis are cheap – and readily available – it’s not really necessary to drive in Panama. In general, it’s not a good idea to go hiking by yourself or exploring remote areas alone. Tourist shuttle buses also exist, but they take longer than you may expect and tend to get quite jammed full of people. Public transport is generally safe in Panama, but do be careful on buses and bus stops since that's where pickpockets and petty thieves operate. Even if the healthcare in Panama is good, some of the best in Latin America actually, having a serious injury or illness may mean that you have to be evacuated – most likely to the US or Mexico. Feeling Safe and Welcomed in Small Town Panama. Instead we would advise carrying younger children in a sling. In such a situation, hand over all your possessions immediately and do not resist. Life is obviously going to vary depending on where you choose to live, from a fishing village – where things will probably be much more old fashioned and laid back – to the capital city, which is where you’ll find a big portion of other expats and more opportunities. Solo travel in Panama by benkucinski (CC BY) Panama is safe for its beaches and resorts than most other Caribbean islands. In the Boquete highlands, there’s lower humidity but temperatures often soar way into the 90s during the drier months. Plus, stir frying means cooking at high temperatures, killing off any germs that may be present. country people are the best. In other large cities, there will be hospitals with specialists, but they won’t be the same level as those to be found in Panama City. Again, travel insurance, in this case, is a necessity. The general consensus tends to be yes, Panama is safe, as long as you are aware of your surroundings and avoid certain areas, especially at night. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We fell in love with Pedasi. Posez vos questions et parcourez les 3 200 000 messages actuellement en ligne. Wow. May now try sticking it out and hope for improvement. Can you please explain by what you mean by saying, “For average the American, retiring here is not worth it.” Thanks! I have never felt threatened or have I ever been threatened while in Panama. It’s safe to visit for families – most of the country is safe to travel with children, it’s pretty compact and is mainly well developed. Panama is perfectly safe to travel alone. We call these areas, “zonas rojas” (red zones). If you want to want to travel to Darien Province, you should only travel with an organised group – even then, you’ll only be allowed to areas where Panamanian police are surveilling. There are a few reputable radio taxi companies that you can call up, however. 22 Top Safety Tips for Traveling to Panama. In Panama City, it’s best to stock up on supplies for your children such as nappies and baby food. Looking for somewhere to move out of the staes if need be. A mix of old and new, as well as a whole load of nature, it’s a great destination that’s more than just its canal. Solo female travel in Panama may seem like a distant dream, but if you’re travelled solo anywhere in Latin America before, you will know the sort of vibe to expect in this country. The prices for renting a car in Panama are generally pretty cheap, but if you’re going to explore off the beaten track, then you’ll need a four wheeled drive. Choose your hotel, hostel or Airbnb ahead of time so you’re not last-minute booking a less-secure place. Both of these should be on visible display. Basically, it’s not worth it. The driving standards of its citizens is pretty low. There are economically deprived parts of the country; there are wealthy people. In general, elsewhere, watch out for potholes and road repairs left unfinished. You will get less hassle, you’ll feel more comfortable, and you may even get a chance to chat. For the most up-to-date safety information and what you should be doing to help, please consult the WHO and your local government. In Panama, solo travel is totally doable. Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. Scams are very common in Panama, so double check your change, never pay anything upfront and negotiate everything in advance. Panama’s geography makes it a vital transit point for illegal trade in the region. But maybe you don’t believe us, therefore we have gathered some objective data to prove to you that you can experience a fantastic and safe lifestyle in Panama. San Miguelito, Juan Dias and El Chorillo are not suitable for tourists. Don’t walk around at night – at all. And guns EVERYWHERE. Hospitals in Panama are either private hospitals or government-run public hospitals. Take extra care whe… Panama is statistically speaking one of the safest countries in Central and South America. Just make sure you go with a reputable and well reviewed tour agency and you should be more than fine. Ease yourself into the new cuisine and you should be fine. Food in Panama is a pretty tasty affair. You can travel at your own pace, do what you want to do, and leave yourself open for an amazing experience. As you’re probably used to anyway, everyone has to wear a seatbelt. Political demonstrations can occur in the city, particularly around the university. If you’re looking for a place to travel with your children, somewhere that’s definitely going to be an adventurous place to be, then this could be it. Tourist police in the most visited areas (including Panama City, of course) make sure that visitors not only feel but are more secure. 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