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Actual Cost of Living near Boquete

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browneyedlattelady
11/17/2019 10:06 EST

I am curious what folks have to say about the actual cost of living near Boquete is. Especially if you don't have to pay rent because of purchasing a home.
I've read everything from $1,000 to $3000 a month depending on individual housing costs. I'm interested in other costs such as internet, tv, phone, insurance home and auto, groceries for cooking most meals at home but not premade stuff, socializing, electric and propane, water and trash etc. Just trying to get a good feel on a budget that allows for extras but isn't wasteful.
Thank you!

PJBarrett1944
11/17/2019 14:43 EST

I live in Boquete and own my home.
My basic expenses are:
electricity $25 (after pensionado discount)
propane $ 10 (small tanks are subsidized by the government)
CableOnda TV & Internet $75
Food (I eat out a lot) $60
Car insurance (liability) about $170/year
Water $25/year
Trash $60/year
Restaurants $120
Gas for car (diesel) $60
Miscellaneous car and home repairs about $80-$100

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browneyedlattelady
11/18/2019 09:38 EST

PJBarrett1944
Are these monthly costs except where you said yearly?

PJBarrett1944
11/18/2019 09:49 EST

Yes, they are all monthly costs. Forgot to say I pay about $30/month for dog food for my 3 dogs.
Of course there are always some unexpected expenses for things like a vet bill, etc.
I buy my clothes at Importadora Americana and I don't spend more than $10/month.
Groceries, diesel fuel, and housing are probably about the same here as in most states. Money is saved on utilities, household help ($25/month), gardener services ($44/month), insurance, etc.

Mikxx
11/18/2019 16:15 EST

Best is to come here on a scouting trip and find out yourself.
I live in Panama City but some of these numbers make no sense for me:

electricity $25 (after pensionado discount) - how big is the property? And I guess you do not use any AC? I have 1800 squarefeet and use AC in one room only and my bill is 150-200 monthly.


Food (I eat out a lot) $60 - when I go to a supermarket I can spend this on a bottle of wine, 1 pound of strawberries (e.g. those are alone 8 bucks) and a piece of cheese. Groceries are easy double the price comapred to the US in average.

restaurants $120 - this translates into maybe 6 average meals in Panama City if I do not eat empanadas every day.

Gas for car (diesel) $60 - this would fill up my truck once, so you drive only aproximately 600 km a month?

In general said, if you want to live the same standard of living than home you will likely spend more money.

PJBarrett1944
11/18/2019 16:38 EST

The poster asked for the cost of living in Boquete, not Panama City. Nobody uses air conditioning in Boquete. Thus $25/month for electricity. I guess if you are buying $60 bottles of wine and $8 strawberries, you are probably not a typical consumer. You can eat out in Boquete in a decent restaurant for $8 or $9 plus a $1.50 bottle of beer.

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Need health insurance in Panama? William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite).

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volcan357
11/18/2019 21:35 EST

Panama City is way over-priced. If you want to live in a big city Medellin is not only much cheaper but much nicer and a lot more interesting. One can live reasonable in the highlands of Chiriqui. There are lots of places in Panama better than Panama City.

stgibson
11/20/2019 11:13 EST

We live about 15 minutes from Boquete and David. We own our own home and live well on $1500/mo. Our electric is $50/mo., propane $20/mo., water, $3/mo.,trash $4/mo., internet $37.45/mo., insurance (highest liability coverage) $250/year, food $250-$300/mo. We go out once a week to socialize for a few drinks and appetizers $10-$20 for two. We went back to the States in August and were shocked at the prices there. Here tomatoes $.90/lb, potatoes $.60/lb, onions $.80-.90/lb., chicken $1.15-$1.50/lb. etc. I buy fresh whole Tuna for $2.50/lb and shrimp $6-$10/lb. I buy whole pigs for $1.75-$2.00/lb., butcher and freeze and raise my own veal. So, I keep busy and couldn't begin to live a good life in the States for what it costs me here. the only thing I pay more for here is asparagus and plastic containers, but the asparagus is getting better because it is getting popular. Not to mention a case of national beer $13.50, 6 pack of Guiness Stout $6 and a liter of good Anejo Rum $10.

browneyedlattelady
11/20/2019 12:25 EST

stgibson
Thank you for your reply! We will be living in Boquete Canyon Village and own our home. It sounds like we will have similar costs. In the states we are used to buying whole pig and side or whole beef and fresh chicken from a local farmer. I hope to be able to find it there as well. We may need to be in touch with you over that subject!

Thanks again for your reply!

PanamaJackie
11/28/2019 23:52 EST

In Boquete Canyon Village, your electric costs will be higher because you will need air conditioning some of the time. It's a much lower elevation than Bajo boquete or Alto boquete so that means it will be warmer.

In the dry season, January - April, it will also be windy there.

it's always a good idea to RENT for at least 6-12 months (through both seasons) before you make a buying decision. If you love it in the rainy season, you may hate it in the dry season or visa versa. So it's a good idea to live in an area you are interested in for 12 months so you can experience what the weather is like. year round.

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