An Expat Talks about Retiring in
Potrerillos, Chiriqui, Panama
One expat in Panama said that he would encourage any one who is thinking about moving overseas to take the plunge...
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Why did you choose to retire abroad?
I chose to move to Panama because I have a Panamanian wife and wanted to bring her back to her home country after 30 years of wonderful marriage.
Why did you choose the country you retired to?
I chose Panama because I was stationed in Panama while in the military where I met my wonderful Panamanian wife.
Are you retired abroad all year or part of the year?
Did you ever live abroad before you retired abroad?
I lived and traveled all over the world while service g in the US Military including Panama
How long have you lived abroad since you retired abroad?
10 years in Panama
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How many countries (other than your home country) have you lived in as a retiree?
What have been the most challenging aspects of being retired abroad?
Dealing with the oppressive US Government
What have been the most rewarding aspects of being retired abroad?
freedom and economic prosperity
What would you do differently if you were just starting the retire abroad process?
move all of my assets over seas in advance of my arrival
What is life like for a retiree in your city and its surroundings? (Is there an active expat community? Cultural Attractions? Recreation? Nightlife?)
quiet and stress free
Did you buy a home or apartment, or rent one? Is this a difficult process? (Please describe)
I built my home on property we purchased 20 years ago
What residency documents or visas did you need to obtain to retire in your host country? How difficult was this process? (Please describe)
Residence visa based on marriage to a Local National
Financially, has living abroad in your host country met your expectations? Exceeded them?
By far exceeded my financial goals and predictions
What are the most important financial considerations for retiring to your host country?
Establishing a financial network including a local bank and access to your retirement income typically kept in a US bank
How much can a retiree live on comfortably in your host country?
$2000 or more per month
Do you have access to quality medical care? (Please describe - is it close? Expensive?)
Yes, Panama has first world medical care but also has third word cares and everything between
Is there a lot of crime where you live? (Please describe)
Occasionally however most is of a petty nature based on lax security on the part of the victim however there is a new threat slowly emerging with home invasion but still quite rare.
Describe available transportation where you live. Do you need a car? Is there access to safe public transportation?
We need a car where we live however there is an abundance of public transportation including bus and taxi.
Is there high-speed internet access where you live?
Yes, we have a wireless system that receives the internet signal via a line of sight antenna
Do you have any other thoughts you would like to share about retiring abroad?
I would encourage any one who is thinking about moving overseas to take the plunge before it's too late and the US Gov. makes it to difficult to expatriate.
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Comments about this Report
Great report ! Thank you.
Just to add . . . ONE of the many benefits to living here in Chiriqui Province: The geographical diversity !
Mountains, Rivers, Volcano/highest peak in Panama AND the land of greatest food production. Not to mention the BEACHES! Check out www.coconutbeachcommunity.com
Three very important points were covered in this report in my opinion.
1) the importance of getting assets out of the US before expatriating. I predict strict currency controls and oppressive taxation are coming
2) leaving the US ASAP due to likely restrictions on freedom of travel
when (not if - it will happen as history teaches us) the next 9/11 type event occurs there will be opportunity for the government to further tighten and restrict freedom of travel again using the event to install drastic measures such as Patriot Act, Homeland Security etc. Biometric monitoring and snooping is coming even more-so than already revealed
3) recognition of the oppressive nature of the US govt.
Nothing need be said regarding this obvious fact
I thank you for this report and am glad for your smart move!
We are making plans to do the same soon...
It should be mentioned that the small town POTRERILLOS( one thousand 400 people) is close to David , a major city( 144 000 people).
Volcan is a more attractive location with temperate weather year-long. Volcan is about 45 minutes from David.
If you look around, you will find 2-bedroom homes for rent for 250 - 300 dollars a month, unfurnished.
Just one question:
What is the US government doing that is making it difficult to expatriate?