All tourists must carry a valid passport with at least 6 months left before expiration, a flight ticket to the next destination of the trip or a return ticket, and a proof of sufficient funds for the stay (US $500), such as a credit card, cash, checkbook, traveler’s checks, or bank statements.
Visa Waiver Agreement
The citizens of the following countries do not need a tourist visa to visit Panama:
Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Holland (the Netherlands), Honduras, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom or Uruguay.
The stamped visa doesn’t require a previous authorization of the Migration Office, and has to be requested at the Panamanian Consulate before traveling to Panama. The citizens of the following countries require a stamped visa to enter Panama:
Chad, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Philippines, Peru, Russia, and Thailand.
Valid for 30 days, usually your airline will sell you a tourist card as you check-in at the airport before your flight to Panama for US$5.00. If the airline didn’t provide you with a tourist card, you may purchase one on your arrival at Tocumen Airport in Panama City from the Immigration Authorities. Some Tourist Cards allow you to stay for 90 days; otherwise an extension of two months may be obtained at the Central Immigration Office. The citizens of the following countries may enter Panama with a tourist card:
Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Canada, Colombia, Curacao (Dutch Antilles), Granada, Guyana, Iceland, Jamaica, Japan, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Norway, New Zealand, Paraguay, San Marino Santa Lucia, Sao Tome and Principe, South Korea, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Sweden, Taiwan, Trinidad and Tobago, United States, Venezuela and Western Samoa.
If you’re not from the previously mentioned states, you will need a visa. To obtain this visa you’ll have to seek it at Panamanian Consulates in your country, or through a lawyer in Panama. Your application must fulfill the Migration Office’s conditions. You’ll have to decide between a tourist visa (in which case the length of your stay has to be specified) or declaring your intention to reside.
Fines for expired visas
Since fall 2010, Europeans are allowed (although not under the law but a resolution from the government) to stay in Panama as a tourist for up to 180 days but not every Panamanian embassy, consulate or member of airline staff knows this.
For non-Europeans, if you stay in Panama for more than 90 days on a tourist visa you are in the country illegally. If you find yourself in this situation, you’ll have to present your passport at the Offices of Immigration and Naturalization, and pay a fine (the fine is calculated on the amount of time you've stayed over the 90 days). Once you pay the fine, you will have to leave Panama within eight days.
Whether you intend to apply for an extension of your tourist visa or a long-stay visa, you will have to register with the Immigration Department in the Registro de Extranjería del Servicio Nacional de Migración. The documents required are a copy of your passport, the completed immigration form and two passport-size photographs.
For more information on the requirements to apply for any visa: www.migracion.gob.pa/