An Expat Talks about Living in
Jul 22, 2017
A retiree in Boquete, Panama talks about life in Boquete. She explains that it's easy to meet people in Boquete through the newcomers' club, Tuesday Market at BCP and through numerous volunteer activities. She cautions anyone coming to Panama with intention of working to make sure that you can legally work in Panama before making the move.
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
How long have you lived there?
What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?
The Tuesday Market at the BCP (Boquete Community Players) is a good place to see and be seen. Very easy to meet others if you are at all outgoing. There is also a newcomers group that meets a couple of times a month. There is always something happening, somewhere to go, something to do. There are many non-profits looking for volunteers, so just find one that speaks to you.
In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.
Boquete has some diversity and I have found it to be a very open and welcoming culture. A variety of religions and also non religious people. There is a vast economic diversity in Panama in general.
What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?
Many expats are not allowed to work in Panama. Those with the pensionado visa cannot legally work here, and ever if you can work, you need to be aware of the laws and requirements. Speak to an attorney before you move while assuming you can just set up shop.
In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?
There are a lot of retirees in Boquete, but not everyone is retired. You can have as active a social life as you want. There are many restaurants, and different interest groups, as well as classes in a variety of topics. The Panamanian culture is very family oriented.
If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.
Come and visit! I guarantee it is nothing like where you live. The culture is very different than the US and the systems and structures can sometimes make no sense at all. If you can't roll with things when they go wrong or get frustrating, it may not be for you.
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