Is Panama City Safe for Travel in 2024?

Panama City, Panama
Safety Score

Panama City, also known as Panama, is the capital and largest city of Panama. It has an urban population of 880,691, with over 1.5 million in its metropolitan area. The city is located at the Pacific entrance of the Panama Canal, in the province of Panama. The city is the political and administrative center of the country and a hub for banking and commerce.

Warnings & Dangers in Panama City

Overall Risk


Panama is not the safest city to travel to. However, if you follow certain safety measures here, you can avoid the main risks. Monitor your environment, double-check everything, and only use licensed services and services.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Public transport is not safe, and tourists are not advised to use it. Use a taxi, however, choose only licensed services. Never catch a taxi from the street; make sure the driver turns on the taximeter.

Pickpockets Risk


Petty thefts and pickpockets are prevalent in Panama; tourists are advised to carry valuables in an anti-theft backpack, not to shine with a lot of cash and jewelry. It is better to keep the original documents in the hotel safe.

Natural Disasters Risk


Panama has a hurricane season that runs from June to November. Study the natural conditions before your visit and act according to the recommendations of the local authorities.

Mugging Risk


There is a risk of armed attacks or kidnapping in Panama, and the common goal of robbers is to get your money and valuables. Therefore, if you are attacked, give the robbers what they ask of you to save your life. Attacks and kidnappings can take place in districts of the city center. Avoid places like this. Travel in a group at night, don't be alone. Use a taxi to return to your hotel.

Terrorism Risk


The risk of terrorism is low in Panama. The global risk of terrorist attacks in public areas exists worldwide, so tourists should be vigilant.

Scams Risk


Fraud is common in Panama, usually associated with the desire of fraudsters to rob a tourist. Do not buy any goods on the street, avoid non-licensed taxis and be careful with those who ask or offer you help.

Women Travelers Risk


Women traveling alone in Panama should avoid late-night walks and be very discreet on the city streets. Heightened precautions won't hurt.

How Safe Is Panama City for Tourists?

Panama is a relatively safe city to travel to.

The crime rate here ranges from low to high.

The main problems are related to corruption, drug trafficking, assault, and theft.

One of the city’s dangerous areas is the ruins of Panama la Vieja – it is recommended to avoid it.

Stay away from Santa Ana, Kurundu, and San Miguel.

The central areas of Marbella, El Cangrejo, Obarrio, San Francisco, and the Banking area are generally the safest.

But even here, always keep an eye on your belongings, wallet, and phone.

It is also better not to shine with expensive devices and cash.

There are many poor people in this city, and your wealth can attract thieves.

Use only licensed taxis and make sure the driver turns on the taximeter.

Otherwise, you will have to figure out the fare for a long time.

Some taxis at the main bus station also prey on visitors.

Never put your belongings in the trunk.

Sit in the back seat with your belongings, hold your luggage firmly as you enter, and exit the vehicle.

Beware of ongoing toll fraud on toll roads around Panama City.

If you are a tourist in a rented car and you drive into the RECARGA lane to buy or top up a road card, the cashier on duty may either require an excessive amount.

Do I Need a Visa to Visit Panama City?

Visitors to Panama require a visa unless they are citizens of one of the eligible countries who do not require a visa for up to 180 days. All visitors must hold a passport valid for 3 months.

Which Currency Is Used in Panama City?

The balboa is, along with the United States dollar, one of the official currencies of Panama. It is named in honor of the Spanish explorer/conquistador Vasco Núñez de Balboa. The balboa is subdivided into 100 centésimos.

How's the Weather like in Panama City?

In Panamá, the wet season is overcast; the dry season is windy and partly cloudy, hot and oppressive year-round. The best time to visit Panama City Beach is from May through October.

What Do I Need to Know about Airports in Panama City?

Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport is a public airport 18 miles northwest of Panama City in Bay County. The airport is owned by Panama City Bay and the industrial area airport. And north of Panama City Beach, Florida, near West Bay.

Should I Get Travel Insurance for My Travels?

A travel insurance policy is a must when visiting a foreign country or city. Make sure you got it before starting your journey; the customs officer may ask for it.

What Are Some Things to Do in Panama City?

Panama City, the capital of Panama, is a modern city framed by the Pacific Ocean and the human-made Panama Canal. Casco Viejo, its cobblestoned historic center, is famed for colonial-era landmarks like the neoclassical Palacio Presidencial and bougainvillea-filled plazas lined with cafes and bars. The Miraflores Locks offers ships traversing the canal, an essential shipping route linking the Atlantic and Pacific.

Is the Water in Panama City Safe to Drink?

In most places, the water in Panama is safe to drink, but it’s better to use bottled water.

Is Uber Safe in Panama City?

There is an Uber taxi in Panama City. You can call a taxi from the app on your phone. The cost of the trip will depend on the distance and time of day.

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