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I am really getting on brain overload reading so much information. I would like to ask for any comparisons between Northern Panama and all of Costa Rica. A friend of mine also wanting to make the move is more leaning towards Panama as he is on their forums and getting conflicting information than what I am. ie:

 

Cheaper to live in Panama

More incentives for Pensioners

Less crime

Temperatures mostly the same ( although I disagree from the area I like, Tilaran vs Boquete)

Too many tourist in CR

People more liking americans in Panama (very contrary to my research)

Medical? which country offers better?

Help!

 

Also how difficult is it to travel from one country to the other? as a tourist or a resident?

 

I am just getting started, but next post will be a different subject.

Thank you to all who reply

delta

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More info on transporting pets into Panama and a previous post regarding Panama v Costa Rica

Please don't jump the gun, so visit for an extended period before you proceed to the next step. I think you mentioned a 8 day trip in another post, but this will not allow you to really see what...and what isn't in Costa Rica

 

BTW you cannot take rental vehicles across the border or take your dogs on a bus.

Edited by costaricafinca

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I lived in Panama for 4yrs in the canal zone area. I really enjoyed it.

 

I wouldn't say that the crime is less in Panama. I'm my personal opinion with no data to back it up, I would say violent crime rate in Panama is higher than CR.

The things I liked more about Panama over CR is the dollarized economy and the fishing is much better. Aside from that I'd take CR over panama. But that could change a couple years from now if CR government doesn't get a handle in the rising crime and ridiculous exchange rate bands.

 

HTH.

 

Ed

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When we worked through this decision about 3-4 years ago, the only serious differences we could find were:

 

1) Government stability: Panama has not had that great a history for the care and growth of democracy. This past week there was a rather damming article in TICO TIMES. It seems that the current leader is running ruff-shot on the powers of the legislature. They were comparing it to the situation in Nicaragua. That my be a little overboard, but the point remains that in Costa Rica this kind of thing seems near impossible as the president, and most of the government, seems somewhat "under-powered" and that seems to be intentional and well accepted. Don't forget, no military in CR!

 

2) We were looking for beach life and the choices in CR were/are much more varied, much more civilized with good access to services and transportation.

 

Good Luck and keep us informed of your progress and your decision process.

 

Jim

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I lived in Panama for 4yrs in the canal zone area. I really enjoyed it.

 

HTH.

 

Ed

 

Ed, was this time BEFORE the Canal Zone was turned over to the Panama Government, if so,My Panama Comrades informed me that it has changed considerably, for the worse???

 

Rick

Edited by tibas9

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For me, as an expat retiree who mostly wants to be left to his own devices, Costa Rica's record of stability is much more important than other considerations.

 

In my experience I have encountered some Expats that decided to move to Panama because they think it will be cheaper to eat and drink(booze) than here in CR and could care less about the stability of the Panama political situation.

Edited by tibas9

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Can't help there as I was there with the military and didnt have to endure any residency process. I will however state that many of the people I know that went civilian and have made panama there home have stated that the process was not terribly complicated. I don't know if there's special consideration given to retired military personnel that helped ease the process.

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Can't help there as I was there with the military and didnt have to endure any residency process. I.

 

As I recall when I visited the Canal Zone before it was turned over it was like a "Country Club" setting with very little NEED for contact with the outside civilian world,i.e, cheap housing with Military Security, shopped at military Comissary, ate and drank at the officer's club, NCO club,etc., etc., and which ALL has evaporated. It is a whole different setting now from when the US military controlled things and made this a very pleasant living experience for their personnel!

Edited by tibas9

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I can understand those folks' sentiments, tibas9, but it will remain to be seen how they feel should a government less welcoming to them seize control. Whether it's Panama or anywhere else, if one finds oneself at the disadvantaged end of a new line of thinking about expats, life could become much less attractive. Expats and other minorities are an easy target for any regime looking for a scapegoat.

 

David, very well stated and from what I have recently read this negative impact is now happening and probably one reason why some Expats living in Panama stay "medicated" day and night. On-the-other-hand, many just stay "thirsty" as some Expats living here in CR :unsure:

 

Rick

Edited by tibas9

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As I recall when I visited the Canal Zone before it was turned over it was like a "Country Club" setting with very little NEED for contact with the outside civilian world,i.e, cheap housing with Military Security, shopped at military Comissary, ate and drank at the officer's club, NCO club,etc., etc., and which ALL has evaporated. It is a whole different setting now from when the US military controlled things and made this a very pleasant living experience for their personnel!

 

 

Quite a bit of truth in that. I was there as well just before the turn over in 97 when bases such as Amador were turned over early, you could see a huge difference 30days post turn over. However a lot of the bases like Holbrook an Clayton have been restored and look great. There's a heavy Asia-PAC influence now so it definitely got a different feel.

I haven't been back in several years but am planning a trip for early next year. We'll take a look for ourselves.

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