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Moon Living Abroad in Panama Paperback – January 26, 2010
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Moon Living Abroad in Panama author Miriam Butterman shares insider secrets on making the move to Panama. To read the entire Q&A, please visit Moon.
Are there any local customs that a newcomer to Panama should be aware of?
The most obvious local custom in Panama that will affect your daily life consists of arriving roughly 30 minutes to an hour fashionably late to any event. If an event is called for a certain time you can be sure it will not start "happening" until about 45-90 minutes later. Other local customs are very much related to personal family cultures or religion. For example, many families from the city who have second homes in the interior spend Sundays at the beach. Sunday is a big family day. Another is that Christmas is not celebrated on December 25th, but rather on Christmas Eve. On the 24th, young people stay out all night, after their family meals. The 25th is saved for nursing your hangover or your full stomach.
Making local friends is a great way to assimilate to living in a new country. What's the best way to meet people in Panama?
Meeting people in Panama is easy if you like to go to the beach and/or are serious about nightlife activity (especially what happens after 11pm and beyond). People are very extroverted and like to go out in large groups to many of the same places. If you decide you like one "joint" most, you will meet people who also frequent it repeatedly. Also, many new expats attend embassy events, such as the American society or the Canadian Embassy. The Spanish and French embassies also sponsor many cultural events that are open to all. This is a wonderful way to meet other internationals who are here for reasons similar to yours. In Panama City, there are many art openings which are not exclusive, and you can usually find out about them in the cultural calendars of the daily newspapers. These art openings are big "mixers" in the Panamanian cultural world. Look to infoartepanama.com to download the digital arts magazine and find out about weekly events. --Moon.com
Did you ever think of just picking up and moving to another country? The travel book publisher Moon has expanded its "Living Abroad" series. New volumes describe living in Panama, South Korea, Guatemala, China and Spain. More than 5.25 million nongovernmental U.S. citizens live abroad, according to the Association of Americans Resident Overseas. While meant for expats, the books also come in handy for tourists who might be spending a few weeks or months in a country as part of study abroad or extended tour. You never know when you'll be back. --Detroit Free Press, February 28, 2010
Top customer reviews
It is really the only book you need, although some of the others written by expats do give some extra inside information - but very dated.
The book covers all aspects of living in Panama, from the point of view of an outsider moving there. To get more detail on specific topics, you can go online and usually the information is available.
I highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to get a balanced view of moving to Panama.