Pensionado Benefits in Panama

In a previous post “Why Panama” I didn’t go into depth about what Panama offers to retirees. At the time of my preliminary research Panama only required a person to receive a minimum of $500.00 per month from a pension, either from Social Security or a private fund. It has been raised to $1,000 a month, but still easy enough. My Social Security benefits were just slightly double what the country required. However, when I was doing this research I wasn’t yet receiving my SS benefits. I simply knew how much they would be so I couldn’t jump right in.

If you have the “Pensionado,” also known as a “Jubilado” you are eligible, by law, to the following discounts:

1. Discounts of 50% off the ticket price charged for movies, theaters and Panama sporting events like soccer, boxing, baseball etc. Charitable events would not offer this discount to the Pensionado.
2. 30% Discount for City Buses, Panama Trains and Boats (not cruise boats).
3. 25% on airfare if flight is in country or if ticket purchased with COPA airlines in Panama.
4. Hotels discount 50% from Monday to Thursday and 30% on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
5. 25% discount of food eaten in a sit down inside restaurant.
6. 15% discount in fast food establishments.
7. 15% discount services in hospitals and private clinics.
8. 10% discount in for prescription medicines in pharmacies.
9. Discounts in the following medical services:
o 20% discount fees for medical doctors
o 15% for dentist fees.
o 15% for optometric examinations.
10. Health Insurance shall adjust fees for Pensionados & Jubilados.
11. 20% discount on any professional services utilized in Panama.
12. 20% discount for all prosthetic devices.
13. 50% discount on the price of a Panama passport.
14. 25% discount on your electric bill up to 600KW’s and then the discount is gone if the usage is over this figure.
15. 25% discount to the basic residential phone service charges when the phone (one phone only)is registered in the name of the Pensionado
16. 25% discount on primary residential water bill if the bill is in the name of the Pensionado and the monthly bill does not exceed $30.00
17. A Pensionado can buy a car every two years free of import duty.
18. A Pensionado can bring in $10,000 worth of personal goods one time with no import duty.

In my most recent visit, which is ending tomorrow, I have been getting some of those discounts, and I even received them a couple of times without asking. On this visit when I went to buy my bus ticket for Santiago I received the discount. On my return to Panama City I’ve been staying at the home of an acquaintance who has the Pensionado and he said that the ID I received from Immigration was just as good as his, so we’ve been using them every time we go out to eat. The big advantage to this is that with 25% off already reasonably priced meals one can order “UP” and still get a deal.

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2 Comments

Filed under panama, Retirement

2 responses to “Pensionado Benefits in Panama

  1. dyson100

    Hi, I came across you post on a wordpress search of Costa Rica. After the market collapse and my job disappearing, I decide to slip away to the banana republics to ‘ride it out’. I currently live in a beach town in CR and am enjoying it, but agree with you, CR is not much cheaper than the States. I’ve heard Nicaragua was much cheaper, but because it is much more poor. I haven’t heard tons on Panama so your information was refreshing. My 90 day visa is coming up soon so I have to be going anyways, I’m thinking of trying a different locale. Maybe Mexico, maybe Nicaragua, and now, maybe Panama! Thanks!

    Cheers!

    Philipe

    P.s. the pictures of the sailing boat are incredible, I always wanted to know how to sail, I blame that on Jimmy Buffett

  2. oldsalt_1942

    Philipe:

    Thanks for being the first person to leave a comment on my blog. I will have a wrap-up of my trip posted in the next day or two.

    I miss my sailboat. Though it was small, only 26 feet, I lived on her for nearly six years. I sailed her single-handed from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to Mexico, Belize and Guatemala back in 1992. That thing sticking up on her transom is a windvane self-steering gear and she was truly a “pocket cruiser.”