Travel To Panama: Tourist Visa Travel Requirements and Application Process

Written By: Armando Du Preez

Jun 20, 2022

9 min read

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In this post, you will find all the essential information about the Panama Tourist Visa. In addition, this post outlines information such as who needs to apply, what are the required documents, visa fees, and the visa application process.

Are you looking for an island getaway? Then I have just the right place for you. The Republic of Panama is an excellent break-away for anyone looking for an island experience with fun activities such as Taboga Island excursions, city tours, or just going on a Panama City tour. I know all the fun activities because I did them on my previous trip to Panama.

Before you start planning your Panamanian getaway, there are a few things you need to know first. Some citizens require an entry visa, also known as a Tourist Visa or a Business Visa. This all depends on your purpose in visiting Panama, but I will cover everything you need to know about the Panama Tourist Visa in this post.

We'll cover everything you need to know about the Panama Tourist Visa in this post. In addition, I will give information such as the Panama Visa fees, how long your Tourist Visa will be valid, and how to apply for the Panama Tourist Visa.

Let's get to it:

How To Get Your Panama Tourist Visa Without A Sweat

Before scrolling through many websites to find out how to get your Panama Tourist Visa, I suggest you apply through Atlys.

Applying for your visa can't be easier. All you need to do is provide some personal and travel information. Then the rest you can leave up to them. Welcome to the new generation of visa applications.

What Is The Panama Tourist Visa?

Before we get started with all the ins and outs of the Panama Tourist Visa, let me first explain what the Panama Tourist Visa is. If you plan a trip to Panama for tourism, you must apply for a Panama Tourist Visa. This type of visa allows you to travel to Panama for tourism purposes.

Later in this post, I will cover the Panama Tourist Visa required documents and the application process. Please feel free to use the provided links if you would like to skip ahead to these sections.

Who Needs To Apply For The Panama Tourist Visa?

As I mentioned earlier, the Panama Tourist Visa offers some visa exemptions for certain international travelers. Although it seems pretty straightforward, there are some strings attached.

Citizens Who Apply For The Visa Waiver Program

According to the Executive Decree No. 591, the following is applicable "Those who hold a valid passport with a 6 months validity left and a multiple entry visa with a remaining ONE-year validity from ONE of the following countries: United States of America, Australia, Canada, or United Kingdom, which has been used at least one time to enter these countries, may enter the Republic of Panama regardless of their nationality."

I know this might be a mouthful, but basically, it states that you can enter Panama without a visa regardless of your nationality if you have a visa or have permanent residency in one of the countries below.

Citizens That Can Travel To Panama Without A Tourist Visa

Perhaps you do not have a valid one-year visa for one of the countries I mentioned earlier. In that case, there is still a chance that you do not require a Panama Tourist Visa. Countries like Colombia, Ecuador, Japan, Singapore, and European countries do not need a Panama Tourist Visa. Don't get too stressed if I didn't mention your country above. You can head over to the Panamanian Consular website to check if you enjoy visa-free travel to Panama.

Citizens That Can Travel Without A Visa If They Are A Diplomatic Passport Holder

Although countries such as the Dominican Republic and Haiti do not enjoy visa-free travel to Panama, there are exceptions if you have a diplomatic passport. For example, suppose you have a diplomatic passport for one of the following countries. In that case, you don't have to apply for the Panama Tourist Visa.

  • Cuba
  • the Dominican Republic
  • Haiti
  • Indonesia
  • the Philippines
  • the Republic of China
  • Venezuela

Citizens That Require A Authorized Visa

Citizens who are not eligible for the visa waiver and need to apply for the authorized visa must head over to their closest Panamanian Embassy or Consulate to get their visa printed in their valid passport. Citizens from countries such as Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Jordan, and Liberia must apply for the authorized visa. You can check out the complete list on the Embassy of Panama's website.

Citizens That Require A Stamped Visa

If you are from a country that does not require you to do an authorized visa application, you only need a stamped visa. This means that you still need to do a Panama Visa application, but you only receive a stamp on your passport, and you enjoy a faster visa processing time. The stamped visa includes Cuba, Ghana, India, and Venezuela citizens. Head over to the Panama Consulate website for the complete list of countries that applies for the stamped visa.

The Panama Tourist Visa Explained

Now that you know what the Panama Tourist Visa is, we can get to the more detailed information. This section will cover everything you need to know about the Panama Tourist Visa, and I will explain who needs to apply for the Panama Tourist Visa.

How Long Can I Stay In Panama With The Panama Tourist Visa?

Your stay can vary depending on whether you are applying to enter via the visa waiver program, you do not need to apply for a tourist visa or the Panama Tourist Visa.

I know this can be confusing, so I made a list of the duration of stays depending on how you enter Panama. Here it is:

  • Entering with the visa waiver program: 30 days
  • Entering without a visa: 3 months (180-days)
  • Entering with a stamped or authorized visa: 3 months (180-days)

What Is The Panama Tourist Visa Fee?

As you might have guessed, there is a Panama Tourist Visa fee. Although the visa fees are generally straightforward, the Panama Tourist Visa fee must be paid in two different sections, namely:

  • Visa fee paid to the National Immigration Service: 50 USD
  • Visa fee paid to the Consulate of Panama: 10 USD

Remember that you can pay your Panama Tourist Visa fee with your debit or credit card when submitting your visa application. Your visa application can be submitted at your nearest Panamanian Consulate or Embassy, but more on that later.

What Is The Panama Tourist Visa Processing Time?

The Panama Tourist Visa processing time can be anything between 30-60 days. It all depends on if you're applying for an authorized entry visa or stamped visa. The authorized visa can take about 60 days to be processed, and the stamped visa can take up to 30 days.

What Are The Requirements For Citizens Qualifying For The Visa Waiver Program?

As I mentioned early, some citizens can enjoy visa-free traveling if they qualify for the visa waiver program. However, although you can travel without a visa, you must provide the following travel documents to the immigration authorities.

  • Have a valid passport with a minimum of 6 months of validity left
  • Have a multiple entry visa with a remaining ONE-year validity from ONE of these countries: USA, Australia, Canada, or the United Kingdom
  • You must have used this visa to enter the country. For example, if you have a United States Visa, you must have entered the U.S. with that visa to qualify for the waiver
  • Immigration officials are accepting as valid the entrance of the holders of a United States permanent resident card under this law
  • Additionally, show proof of economic solvency for a minimum of 500 USD upon entry

What Are The Panama Tourist Visa Requirements?

Suppose you do not qualify for the visa waiver or do not enjoy visa-free travel. In that case, you must apply for the Panama Tourist Visa. Here is a list of required documents that must accompany your Panama Tourist Visa application:

  • Completed and signed visa application form
  • Copies of ALL pages of your passport, with the passport having at least six months validity before intended travel
  • Reservation or flight itinerary of continuation of a trip or electronic ticket
  • Copy of a valid ID
  • Three photographs (size: 2x2, with white background)
  • Proof of economic solvency during the stay, which must be no less than 500 USD (bank statement, travelers check
  • The last visa that was approved by the immigration authorities (if applicable)

How To Apply For The Panama Tourist Visa?

Now we can finally get to the Panama Tourist Visa application process. I know visa applications can be intimidating, but there is nothing to worry about. Just follow these 5 easy steps to apply for your Panama Tourist Visa.

Save the hassle. Apply on Atlys in three steps.

  • Scan documents

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  • Fill in information

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  • Get your visa!

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Apply directly from your phone!

Step 1: Gather The Required Documents

The first and most important thing you must do is gather all the required documents. As I mentioned earlier, you will need these documents to apply for the Panama Tourist Visa.

Traveler tip: Always make extra copies of each document just in case something gets lost or misplaced.

Step 2: Complete The Application Form

After you have gathered all the required documents, you should complete the application form. When filling out the application form, you will be required to give some personal and travel information. The application form is straightforward and isn't complicated at all.

Step 3: Send Your Documents To Your Nearest Consulate

Now that you are set with your travel documents, you must send them to the nearest Panama Embassy or Consulate. I suggest you contact them to find out if you should use a visa service or if you can send the documents to them via a courier service.

Step 4: Wait For Your Visa To Be Processed

The hard work is finally over. All you can do now is wait for your Panama Tourist Visa to be processed. As I mentioned earlier, you can expect to wait 30 days if you aren't applying for an authorized visa or 60 days if you are. You will be notified via SMS, email, or phone call when your Panama Tourist Visa has been processed.

Step 5: Get Your Approved Panama Tourist Visa

The last thing you need to do is head over to the Panama Embassy/Consulate to get your stamped visa or printed in your valid passport.

Get Ready For Your Panama Getaway

I hope you are all packed and ready to go because you're on your way to Panama. The last thing you need to do is sit back, relax and plan your next trip.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Panama require a Covid test to enter?

All unvaccinated and partially vaccinated tourists must have a negative COVID-19 test (PCR or Antigen) within 72 hours of travel to Panama or be tested at the airport at their own expense. In addition, before checking in, each person entering Panama must complete and sign an electronic sworn affidavit.

What Vaccinations Are Required To Visit Panama?

Suppose you are traveling from a country classified as a high-risk yellow fever area. In that case, you must bring proof of your yellow fever vaccination.

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