Panama
Resources
City Guides
JoinSign In
Cigna International Health Insurance

Living in Panama > Panama City >

Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Panama City, Panama

Oct 17, 2016


Panama City

An expat in Panama City, Panama shares her experience with settling into a new culture and how the experience has been a surprise for her given her present stage of life.

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

Panama City

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

Well, I came back and forth and started a business 3 years before I moved here.

Expats living in Panama interested in expat health insurance should take a minute to get quotes our partner, International Citizens Insurance, a trusted expat health insurance broker. They will provide you with comparison quotes from some of the biggest expat health insurers: Cigna, Aetna and GeoBlue. Get a Quote

Expats living in Panama interested in expat health insurance should take a minute to get quotes our partner, International Citizens Insurance, a trusted expat health insurance broker. They will provide you with comparison quotes from some of the biggest expat health insurers: Cigna, Aetna and GeoBlue.

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?

I did not know a dozen words and all were mispronounced before I moved.

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

Not really but once you actually move in.....it does not really impact you. No matter how much you visit and think you know a place, living there is an entirely different experience (different but for me a good one).

Moving to Panama

Moving to Panama soon? AGS Worldwide Movers is a leader in the international moving industry. Their experience and expertise allows them to guarantee their clients the best quality moving services. Get a moving quote today.

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

I am here 4 years and I think that the older you are the more difficult it is to shed your old skin and comfortably wear your new one

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?

I never felt the anger. I absolutely love Panama and always have... for me it was more of a realization of ME and how I needed to be more flexible and open minded. I think I have been through the stages moreso that my own country/culture infuriates me for its closed mindedness, misconceptions, misinformation, and propaganda.

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.

To this day, I have not lost my AWE in my new surroundings and how greatful I am for this experience. Do not get me wrong...much of it has not been easy but it has been a growing experience I NEVER expected at this age.

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

The value of others and enjoying/appreciating THIS MOMENT and who you are with rather than things and envy of others.

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

For me it has been difficult to learn the language at my age. I try, I make my mistakes, but I am determined and so amazed at what is possible when you want something bad enough. To not learn the language is to miss out on so much.

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

The language for the most part... for example using caliente rather than calor to express the effect of the heat on myself.

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

Just cast aside any preconceived notions, jump in and enjoy. They are a very welcoming, accepting, patient people. Do not have expectations of time in particular. Time means little to nothing here so, my biggest take away has been not to get insulted if someone disrespects your time. To us, time is money, time is valuable so if you disrespect someones time in the U.S., you disrespect the person. Here, how can you disrespect something that has no importance... so what I had to settle on..which has helped me in other countries as well....who gets to define what RIGHT is... RIGHT is only a perspective. Good luck and above all...ENJOY!!!

Cigna Expat Health InsuranceExpatriate Health Insurance

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Panama from our partner, Cigna Global Health.
Get a Quote

More about Panama City

Guide to Living in Panama City

Guide to Living in Panama City

Global nomads, retirees and expats are attracted to Panama City for many reasons. Our Guide to Living in Panama City, Panama covers the Best Places to Live, Schools, Healthcare, Cost of Living, Transportation and more.

Best Places to Live in Panama City

Best Places to Live in Panama City

Learn which neighborhoods rank as the best places to live in Panama City according to expats. Plus, learn which two neighborhoods may not fit the bill despite one of them being one of the most popular tourist destinations in Panama City.

Cost of Living in Panama City

Cost of Living in Panama City

Should you move to Panama City for a lower cost of living? The answer may surprise you.

Healthcare in Panama

Healthcare in Panama

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.

Schools in Panama City

International Schools in Panama City

If you're moving to Panama City with school-aged children, living near your children's school will make life easier. There are schools in central Panama City, Clayton and elsewhere. Below you'll find information about the most popular schools for expats in Panama City.

Living in Panama City

A resident of Panama city for 60 years provides a brief glimpse of life in Panama for expats. Job opportunities and the modern amenities are a few of the features described.

Retirement in Panama City

An expat retiree in Panama advises others not to move there to save money, because the cost of living is probably less in rural, small cities in the US. But, he says that you can save a lot on healthcare in Panama.

Join our Panama Expat Forum

Visit our Panama Forum and talk with other expats who can offer you insight and tips about living in Panama City, Panama.

More about Panama

7-Best-Places-to-Live-in-Panama7 Best Places to Live in Panama

Panama is a great place to live or retire with easy residency laws, warm people and lots of expats. Whether you want to live by the beach in Bocas del Toro or need to live in Panama City for work and schools, there are many places to explore. We highlight 5 great places to live in Panama.

The-Other-OptionPanama Retirement, The Other Option

Miguel Sirus retired in Panama 10 years ago. Instead of choosing a popular expat destination such as Boquette, Volcan or El Valle, he bought an overgrown piece of property near a village in Panama. In this article, he offers a glimpse at how his new life unfolded.

Thanksgiving-in-PanamaThanksgiving in Panama

American expats in Panama can enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving meal at these restaurants.

7-Things-to-Know-Before-You-Move-to-PanamaMoving to Panama: 7 Things to Know Before You Move to Panama

Do you have to buy a round trip ticket when moving to Panama? How difficult is it to bring my dog? Should I buy a home in Panama? Can I find health insurance that covers me in Panama and my home country when I travel back to visit relatives?

Cigna International Health Insurance

Write a Comment about this Expat Report

Sign In to post a comment.
addacomment
Cigna Expat Health InsuranceExpatriate Health Insurance

Get a quote for expat health insurance in Panama from our partner, Cigna Global Health.
Get a Quote

Guide to Living in Panama CityGuide to Living in Panama City

Global nomads, retirees and expats are attracted to Panama City for many reasons. Our Guide to Living in Panama City, Panama covers the Best Places to Live, Schools, Healthcare, Cost of Living, Transportation and more.

Healthcare in PanamaHealthcare in Panama

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.

Best Places to Live in Panama CityBest Places to Live in Panama City

Learn which neighborhoods rank as the best places to live in Panama City according to expats. Plus, learn which two neighborhoods may not fit the bill despite one of them being one of the most popular tourist destinations in Panama City.

Cost of Living in Panama CityCost of Living in Panama City

Should you move to Panama City for a lower cost of living? The answer may surprise you.

Schools in Panama CityInternational Schools in Panama City

If you're moving to Panama City with school-aged children, living near your children's school will make life easier. There are schools in central Panama City, Clayton and elsewhere. Below you'll find information about the most popular schools for expats in Panama City.

Restaurants in Panama CityRestaurants in Panama City

Support your favorite restaurants in Panama City as they recover from the pandemic. Submit a free listing for them on Expat Exchange to help spread the word about them to the expat community.

Living in Panama City

A resident of Panama city for 60 years provides a brief glimpse of life in Panama for expats. Job opportunities and the modern amenities are a few of the features described.

Retirement in Panama City

An expat retiree in Panama advises others not to move there to save money, because the cost of living is probably less in rural, small cities in the US. But, he says that you can save a lot on healthcare in Panama.

Panama Guide
Other Links
Our Story Our Team Contact Us Submit an Article Advertising Travel Warnings

Copyright 1997-2020 Burlingame Interactive, Inc.

Privacy Policy Legal