WHAT’S IT COST
Cabins: $85 U.S. per night for two. $510 per week (pay 6 nights, the 7th no charge) Others in cabin, $20 per person additional. Children 5 years or under, no charge.
BED & BREAKFAST:
$65 U.S. double, $50 U.S. single, per night.
Long-term renters welcome. Please inquire.
Copa Airlines (www.copaair.com) operates direct flights to Panama from Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Chicago, Toronto, Boston, New York, Orlando and Miami. Other airlines serving Panama include American, Delta, LATAM, AeroMexico, Taca, SBA, Air Transat, Spirit Air, and Cubana. Fly from Europe to Panama on Iberia to/from Madrid, Spain; on KLM to/from Amsterdam; Condor to/from Frankfurt.
International flights arrive/depart Tocumen International Airport while National flights arrive/depart Marcos Gelebert National Airport. Daily flights within Panama are now operated by one airline, Air Panama. Both jet and turbo-prop planes make the run to David, Bocas del Toro, the Kuna Yala and other destinations within Panama. No flights to David after 4 p.m.
It seems like a conspiracy, but taxi operators maintain a monopoly on transport to and from the airports. Their ‘asking price’ is $30 into Panama City from Tocumen International airport, although you can negotiate a better price if you are patient, better chance yet, if you speak some Spanish. White ‘co-operativo’ vans operate into the city as well, and are a better deal. The more on board, the better the price.
A new, long-overdue modern public bus system, MetroBus is now being put in place in Panama city. A subway system will be operational in February 2014.
Travel to David, Bocas del Toro and as far as Guatamala City from the main national bus terminal in Albrook. New, comfortable, air-conditioned, bathroom equipped, 1st class coaches depart almost hourly.
The ticket cost to David is about $17 per person. There is no extra charge for baggage.
Catching a cab in Panama City is not a problem. All taxis are colored yellow. Flag one down as they go by. Panama City currently has a ‘zone fare’ system in place, but most drivers ignore it and charge what the market will bear. However be clear on your fare BEFORE you go. If you speak little Spanish, have someone at your hotel ask the driver.