Costa Rica Panama Border Crossing

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The Costa Rica Panama Border Crossing at Paso Canoas

Written by Logan and Brianna Pribbeno
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Paso Canoas Border Crossing

Open: 6AM – 10PM
Remember: No necisita ayuda. Por favor, dejame in paz, no voy a pagar. Vaya!
$US accepted at all points and is the official currency in Panama

  • Exit Costa Rica:
  • The blue immigration building is on the left side entering town. Their are parking spots out front. Go to the “Salida” window for your exit stamp.

    Costa Rica Immigration & Customs

  • You will need to fill out a tourist exit form and then the agent will stamp you out of the country.
  • Aduana is to the left of the “Salida” window. Fill out another form explaining whether or not you intend to return to Costa Rica with your vehicle.
  • The aduana agent will process your exit form and give you a canceled vehicle import permit which you keep (we were not asked to give it up upon exit).

Panama Border Crossing

Open: 6AM – 11PM
Remember: No necisita ayuda. Por favor, dejame in paz, no voy a pagar. Vaya!
$US accepted at all points and is the official currency in Panama

  • Enter Panama:
  • Drive about a half km straight down the road to the white circular top Panama immigration building. There is a large “Bienvendos a Panama” sign to help you out.
  • Stand in the “Entre Panama” line at the far end of the complex to obtain your entry stamp.

    Panama Immigration

  • While waiting in line you will be approached by an official selling the tourist sticker ($1US per person) which goes in your passport, this is mandatory.
  • The immigration agent will ask where you came from, where you are going, and your occupation and then stamp your passport. You must also provide proof of economic solvency ($500US) and this can be done with a valid credit card.
  • There is a Panama Tourism office where you used to have to purchase a $5US per person tourist card, when we asked about it they said it no longer exists.
  • Purchase vehicle insurance ($15US) across the street (near the movie star sales kiosk). You should receive two copies of the insurance paperwork.

    Panama Insurance Agency

  • Head back to the white building, opposite end of immigration and to the left of the tourism window, hand over one copy of your passport, vehicle title, and insurance to receive stamped paperwork for your vehicle import permit.
  • Go to the office in the middle (circular) area of the complex to receive another stamp on the vehicle import permit and a form to fill out regarding your vehicle and what you’re bringing into the country.
  • Next is the vehicle inspection, find an agent with a clipboard (they will probably find you). This agent gives the final signature on your permit and takes the form you just filled out.
  • Last stop is fumigation. Pay the $3US fee at the office to the immediate right of the immigration window. You will receive a receipt which another agent with a clipboard will verify and then wave you through the automatic sprayers.
  • Make sure you have your paperwork (passport, import permit, insurance) in order as you enter the country, there is a police stop about 1km down the road.

EXCHANGE RATE (as of 4/14/11):

$1 US = $495.70 Colones (Costa Rica)


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Buen viaje!

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