There is no mail delivery service to your house in Panama. No more junk mail!!
Don’t worry, you can still receive and send mail within Panama and even from outside Panama. These are your options:
MAIL FORWARDING COMPANIES – International Mail
Throughout Panama, there are mail forwarding companies like Mail Boxes Etc, Uno Express, Servitechnics, Box Shop, etc. You can set up a free account with them when you arrive in Panama. They will supply you with a unique Miami address that you will use to send Amazon orders, letters, other packages.
When you order something online, you have it shipped to the Miami address.
Once your mail arrives in Miami, it is put on a plane to be flown to Panama City. From there it is put on a truck to be delivered to the mail forwarding company where you have an account. When your package or letter arrives, you will receive an email that you have mail. You’ll need to go into their office to pick up your package.
This service is very convenient, but using a mail forwarding company is not cheap! You’ll pay about $3 to $4 per pound for packages.
You can also send your package by boat for about $2 a pound but it will take longer to arrive.
It typically takes about 7 days from the day I order something on Amazon until it arrives in my town in Panama.
BE CAREFUL when you order packages. Check the weight. I recently ordered two lamps for $50 each to try to get the lighting better for Livestreams – it cost $86 to get 2 lamps to Boquete!
Some mail forwarding companies also handle mail that needs to be sent from Panama back to your country. They even offer Federal Express or DHL for time-sensitive packages. It’s about $80 per legal-size envelope to mail DHL or Federal Express from Panama back to your country!
A more affordable option for mailing letters or packages from Panama to your country is to use the local Post Office. Most towns in Panama have a post office. It could take 2 weeks or longer for the mail to arrive at its destination but the price is usually less than $5 if you use the Post Office.
So, even though there is no mail delivery to your house, you can still receive and send mail in Panama. But because of the costs involved, it’s a good idea to convert most of your mail to electronic delivery to reduce costs.
CHANGE OF ADDRESS
You can use the Miami address for banks and any other mail you might receive. It’s better to convert bank statements and magazine subscriptions to electronic delivery. Remember, it’s about $3-$4 a pound to receive mail in Panama.
Before you move to Panama, you might want to contact a mail forwarding company in the town you plan to move to so you can get your Miami address to start changing your address.
MAIL SENT INSIDE PANAMA
To send and receive mail within Panama, you will use an in-country courier service like Uno Express or Fletes Chavele. You’ll need to take the letter or package to their office and have it addressed to the person you want to send it to, plus their city or location, plus their cell phone number. ( Name, town, cell number)
If someone in Panama City needs to send me something to Boquete, they will take the package to an in-country courier service. If the package is delivered to the courier service by 2 PM, I will usually get the package the next day. You will even get a tracking number.
The cost will depend on how much the package weighs. It is typically about $4 for a legal-sized envelope filled with documents.
NO BILLS TO YOUR HOUSE
Since there is no mail delivery to your house, no bills will be mailed to you either. . Companies like electric, internet, and cable TV all send your bills by email.
If you have a Panama bank account, you can pay your bills online. If you do not have a Panama bank account, you will need to go into their office to pay your bills or go to one of the general bill pay locations which are throughout Panama.
With a Panama bank account, you can even set up recurring bill payments for things like internet and electricity.
Some mail forwarding companies also offer freight forwarding” services. Freight could be a pallet, or two, of household goods. The typical cost is $10 per cubic foot to receive the pallet in Panama. But there is also the cost to get the pallet to the mail forwarding company’s Miami address.
If you only have 10-20-50 boxes of things you want to send to Panama, this is a better way to go instead of using an international mover.
It’s a good idea to put your household goods in a plastic tote then use shrink wrap around it.
BUY IN PANAMA!
Most things you need are available in Panama. They may not be in the town where you live but they should be available in Panama City, David, Chitre, or Santiago.
If the items you want are not available in the town where you live (or you hate to go shopping like me), then contact Julie at Simplify Panama to shop for you in Panama City then ship the items to you. This is usually much more affordable than ordering from Amazon then shipping to Panama.
LEARN MORE.. Watch the replay of the Livestream to learn about how to get Amazon orders and other mail sent to Panama!