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When Panama re-opened its borders to visitors on October 12th, Safety Guidelines for Your Next Trip to Panama was published on Panama’s official tourism website. This is required reading for anyone who plans to travel to Panama.
In the “Prior to Traveling” section of that page, they list a number of requirements to enter Panama. One of the requirements states:
Prior to check-in, all incoming travelers will be required to complete an Electronic Affidavit (sworn statement) agreeing to:
- Comply with all sanitary control measures outlined by the Ministry of Health of Panama.
- Provide localization information for residence while in Panama.
- Confirm that you are healthy (no symptoms of any respiratory illness) and that you have not been exposed to COIVD-19 within the last fourteen (14) days.
The page also includes instructions for how to fill out the Affidavit.
During the last couple of weeks, we’ve received dozens of phone calls and emails from people who have experienced problems while attempting to fill out this form. At first, I thought to myself “Geez! How hard could it really be?” But the calls have kept coming in.
I decided to try filling it out myself to find out what is really going on. What I found was the process is actually surprisingly difficult. If it was any other form on the internet I would have given up early on. But considering how important the form is, I was determined to make it work. After a lot of trial and error, I was finally able to complete the form!
I documented my experience and am sharing it with you so you’ll hopefully have a better experience than I did. This is what worked for me…
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Since 2010, Panama Relocation Tours has been helping people relocate to Panama. We’ve completed 122 all-inclusive 6-day relocation tours and helped 1400 people have a smooth and easy move to Panama. In addition to the Panama Relocation Tours, we offer Private Tours for only $200 per day. We also offer the Online Panama Relocation Guide which has the same information that you would get on a 6-day tour for only $595. The Online Guide includes information about the best places to live, visa options, where to buy health insurance, recommendations for reliable immigration lawyers, honest real estate agents, getting your pets in to Panama, and much much more.
We have the experience you can trust and need when relocating to Panama.
It’s true that Panama has had some severe lockdown and prevention measures but that has helped keep the number of deaths low and prevented hospitals from becoming overwhelmed. From the beginning, their objective has been to identify those who test positive (even with no symptoms) so they could isolate those people to prevent them from infecting others. When someone does test positive, Panama has an aggressive contact tracing plan to notify everyone they came in to contact with so they can isolate too.
Currently, the only restrictions are that everyone must wear a mask in public and in stores. There is a curfew from 11 pm to 5 am. Some businesses are still closed but most are open. Restaurants offer dine-in service with less capacity.
For several months, the number of new cases per day was down to 500-600 per day. Then the November holidays started and the number of new cases jumped to 1000 new cases per day. I think this is because of the many parties during the holidays. Panamanians love their parties and family gatherings.. despite Covid. Panama recently issued new guidelines that family gatherings or parties cannot be more than 10 people. The highest number of cases are in Panama City and just west of Panama City. These are both areas with a very high density.
I really think the numbers will start going BACK DOWN by the end of November because no one in Panama wants to go back to having restrictions as indicated in the Contingency Plan below.
The Contingency Plan is divided into four indicators, seven pillars, and five alert stages.