Do you remember what it was like when you finally passed the test and got your driver’s license? What a great feeling of excitement and opportunities. This is what my husband reminded me of when he got his Pensionado Visa in Panama. It was like a door opened to a whole new world. Remember the saying “with age comes privilege”? Panama is a perfect example of this. With his new card, my husband can now go to the front of the line in banks and other places. Some establishments even have a special line for Jubilado’s (another term for it). This is just the first of many things he can take advantage of.
According to the Panama Immigration Department, there is no minimum age requirement to qualify. However, the applicant’s retirement income must be a minimum of $1,000 US dollars per month and be guaranteed for life. Of course, the proper documentation must be provided. There are also others ways to qualify for this benefit.
Now that he has obtained residency in Panama via the Pensionado Program, we (ok, he) is entitled to a one-time exemption of duties on the importation of household goods (up to $10,000) and a tax exemption every two years on the importation of a car or a purchase of a local car.
The Panama retirement visa offers other benefits but only for the individual visa holder. So now he is the cheap date, and with the great discounts he gets, I will pick up la cuenta more often! I am sure you will see us in your travels through Panama taking advantage of the additional benefits. You will know it is us by the big smile on my husband’s face and the enthusiasm he has as he whips out his new Pensionado Visa card.
Some of the other benefits pensionados are entitled to:
•50% discount entertainment anywhere in the country (movies, concerts, sports)
•30% discount on bus, boat, and train fares
•25% discount on airline tickets
• 30 – 50% discount on hotel stays
•25% discount at restaurants (some exceptions apply)
•15% discount on at fast-food restaurants
•15% discount on hospital bills (unless insurance applies)
•10% discount on prescription medicines
•20% discount on medical consultations
•15% discount on dental and eye exams
•20% discount on professional and technical services
•50% reduction in closing costs for home loans
•25% discounts on monthly energy bills
•15% off loans made in your name
•1% less on home mortgages for homes used for personal residence