Retirement Detectives

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Helping you find your ideal place in the sun!

Authoritative, unbiased information about current and emerging retirement destinations.
First hand knowledge and experience.
The good. The bad. The bizarre.
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Home Panama First Impressions
First Impressions

What do you miss about home?

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 This just came in from Washington D.C. Roberto

Is there anything that an expat might miss in terms of everyday living in Panama? Such as food, entertainment or other creature comforts.

Ron

That is a good question, and the answer may sound strange...

Last Updated on Tuesday, 18 January 2011 17:55 Read more...
 

Where should I set up a "base camp" to explore Panama?

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 This just came in from Laguna Beach, California. Roberto

Hello Roberto,
I hope this email finds you and yours healthy and happy. We exchanged emails last year regarding my trip to Panama. Unfortunately, my Panama departure date was postponed somewhat. Now, I am back on schedule! As I mentioned, I live in Laguna Beach, California which you said you are familiar with.
I am looking for a city and an apt. to use as a base of “operations” as I venture out to discover Panama. Your city sounds very nice. Can you provide me with any other suggestions for a “Base Camp” and central location? I have many more questions which will follow if you don’t mind.
I will arrive in Panama between April 1 and May 1 2011.
Looking forward to hearing from you.
P. S. Nice looking pool
LagunaGuy (Greg)

Last Updated on Wednesday, 12 January 2011 14:58 Read more...
 

Panama Top 10 tourism sites

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 This article first appeared in www.newsroompanama.com. Thanks David. Roberto

Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 January 2011 12:36 Read more...
 

An expats' Christmas in Coclé

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 Our Christmas started off so well... until it became a comedy of errors.

Last Updated on Saturday, 25 December 2010 19:46 Read more...
 

Santa's on his way

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 It's beggining to feel a lot like Christmas...

It's that time of year once again, when Santa (Roberto Chocolaté last year - and his brother Dan this year) dons his trusty sleigh and visits the little children of Guzman, one of Panama's poorest villages.

. Roberto Chocolaté on his way to Guzman last year

Last Updated on Thursday, 16 December 2010 00:42 Read more...
 

Flooding death toll rises to 10

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 The rains have stopped, but the flood waters continue to rise as the rain water makes its way down the mountains to the flooded areas. Over 5,000 men women and children are homeless, right before Christmas. Roberto

Here  is a report with photos from bit.ly/gVxEKM

Last Updated on Saturday, 11 December 2010 11:50
 

Almost 500 homes and 4,100 people evacuated due to heavy rains

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 Four hundred and twelve homes have been destroyed by floods and heavy rain, most of them in the Chepo area, east of Panama City.

Last Updated on Friday, 10 December 2010 11:47 Read more...
 

Tourists from Canada up 60%

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This article was published on www.newsroompanama.com. Roberto
Canadians are discovering Panama at a faster rate than any other group says Panama’s tourism authority.

Last Updated on Thursday, 09 December 2010 22:59 Read more...
 

Tourist Insurance plan cancelled to pay for city garbage

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 This article appeared today in www.newsroompanama.com. Roberto

The much touted health insurance plan for visitors to Panama has disappeared under a pile of garbage.

 The $3 million that the Tourism Authority had set aside to implement the plan has been transferred to the new national waste authority (ANA) as the government scrambles to find funds so that the clean up body can begin operations in December.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 December 2010 14:39 Read more...
 

Panama flying high as a hot destination

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This is an article published in: www.neswroompanama.com Roberto

Panama flying high as expanding hub for international airlines
SATURDAY, 27 NOVEMBER 2010 
By Adrian Barry

British Airways (BA) is the latest in a series of European based airlines to consider direct flights to Panama, to take advantage of its predominance as a hub for Latin America.

BA wants to use Panama as stopping point, following other airlines from Latin America, Japan and Canada who want to access Central and South America.

The airlines’ interest is fueled by an increase in tourists visiting the Isthmus, the siting of more multi national companies in Panama City, and the increased traffic generated by the Panama Canal expansion, and other major projects bringing in specialists and managers from oversees.
The boom in hotel construction is expected to prove a boon to package tour operators.

Iberia has direct flights to Madrid

Iberia, which plans to merge with BA on Monday ( November 29) established in October a direct flight from Madrid-Spain. KLM has increased its flights from Amsterdam to six a week and by 2011 will fly daily.

Condor recently began direct flights to Frankfurt, Germany.
BA will begin flying to Puerto Rico in March 2011 and their planning includes a Panama stop.

The carrier is studying using the Tocumen hub for passengers to make connections to other destinations throughout Latin America.

Direct flights to FrankfurtBritish Airways, before privatization, was known as BOAC. Cynical passengers translated the acronym to Better on a Camel, and BA later as Bloody Awful. But other carriers got similar treatment TWA an American trans-Atlantic carrier(Try Walking Across), SABENA of Belgium (Such a Bloody Experience, Never Again) and Air France (Air Chance).
BA has recently been involved in strikes and disputes with flight crews, as it seeks to streamline its operations, but its public image is radiant when compared with discount flyer Ryan Air, about which disgruntled users have created a website to report problems, but the carrier still dominates in Europe.


KLM moving to daily flights to Amsterdam

Ernesto Orillac, advisor to the Panama Tourism Authority says that an agreement has been reached to promote in the UK a package that includes stays in Puerto Rico and Panama, using connections offered by Copa Airlines.

Copa recently joined the Star Alliance airline network of which BA is a member, making code sharing easier.
Between January and September reached the country about 9300 British tourists, representing an increase of 15% over the same period last year.

Other airlines that have recently established direct flights to Tocumen are Tame of Ecuador, Venezolana de Aviacion, and Dutch Antilles Express from Curacao.

Japan Airlines (JAL) is considering direct flights from Tokyo, and Copa, one of the few airlines in the world to remain profitable during the recession is working with Canadian authorities on a direct route to Toronto, Canada.

EDITOR: The COPA deal with Toronto is signed, pending Pearson's allocation of the time slots for landings. Expect flights to commence in March 2011.

 

More new flights to Panama

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 This article was published on the Panama Forum. Note: COPA Airlines has signed the deal, however Air Canada is fighting them. Resolution expected by March. 

In other news, Panama’s Copa Airlines will add 22 Boeing 737-800 aircraft to its fleet for $1.7 billion with an option to buy 10 additional planes, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Also - the cruise port reported below is moving ahead.

Roberto


Panama’s tourism authority has been hard at work, lobbying airlines around the world to establish direct flights to Panama
Panama has long been a growing hub, thanks to Copa Airlines. The nation’s premier airline has done much to make Tocumen International the “Hub of the Americas,” as it is known.

Recently Panama’s tourism authority has been hard at work, lobbying airlines around the world to establish direct flights to Panama. According to tourism officials, one of the best ways to promote tourism is to ensure easy travel to Panama. As the year draws to an end, the results of the tourism authority’s efforts are encouraging.

Last Updated on Sunday, 05 December 2010 12:50 Read more...
 

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