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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Altos del Maria, Panama


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One expat talks about living in Panama and warns that it's buyer beware in the real estate market. Also, ongoing power outages and limited internet access are common.

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Altos del Maria

Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?

We spent several years coming to Panama and talking with XPats.... No one told the truth to make the sale!

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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?

Yes

Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

All utilities, GAS, food ate more costly than the U.S. not counting all the costs of Visas and a drivers license. Anthing International Living tells you is a LIE!

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How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

People here are Great, XPats LIE to make the sale

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

Do Not use any XPat to purchase a home. Make sure you are working with a legal Panama Licensed Realtor.... XPats do not hold a Panama License... Buyer beware!

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

All the basic costs for this area are higher. Utilities don't work due to failures and if you get Internet for this area it works less 50% of the time and costs are high

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

Panama local, people!

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

Utilities for our area. Power failures are daily...

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

Use only legal, licensed realtors. Ask the for a copy of THEIR License not some brokers license. Do not give deposits without a good Attorney

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Get a quote for expat health insurance in Panama from our partner, GeoBlue.
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Get a Quote Call  

Panama Forum Panama Forum
Join our Panama forum to meet other people living in Altos del Maria, Panama.

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Expats have differing opinions about healthcare in Panama. Many advice against public hospitals and healthcare, but some recount good experiences. This article covers public vs private healthcare, cost of healthcare, obtaining prescription medications and much more.

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A couple from the US had vacationed in Panama for years. They decided to move there and built a house in rural Altos del Maria, Panama. Life has slowed down tremendously, which took some time to get used to. But, they love the climate, fresh air and their new friends - both locals and expats.

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