The reasons Panama has become THE relocation destination for millennials are obvious. Its safety statistics, use of the U.S. Dollar, quick and affordable residency options, and gorgeous geography make Panama a desirable option for expats.
Panama City: Hip For Millennials
But what makes Panama’s capital so hip for millennials specifically? Young people have been flocking to Panama City thanks to a growing tourism sector and the large industrial expansion Panama City has seen over the last few decades.
The popular Selina’s hostel chain, which started in Playa Venao, Panama, markets the country as a “digital nomad” paradise, aka a millennial’s dream.
Do you mean I get to work from my laptop and cell phone part-time and spend my free time exploring white-sand islands and discovering hidden waterfalls? Sign me up! But just in case you aren’t completely sold yet, I’m going to break it down a bit.
1. Panama’s Digital Nomad Lifestyle
A digital nomad is someone who works remotely and travels the world. As long as there is cell phone reception or WIFI signal, the digital nomad can work whenever they choose and spend the rest of their time exploring their host country. Some have a home base, and for those interested in traveling Latin America, there is no better place to land than Panama City—the bridge to the Americas! While traveling, many digital nomads stay in hostels where it is easy to meet fellow travelers and join group tours and activities.
2. Panama As A Tax Haven
Panama has a territorial taxation system, which means the country only asks for taxes on income earned within Panama. Therefore, if you work online for a business based in another country, or your customers are in another country, you do not pay taxes to Panama on that income. Beware if you are a U.S. citizen, you must continue to file taxes in the U.S., as it is one of the few countries that taxes all citizens, regardless of their residency status.
3. Panama’s Cost of Living
Panama City can be as affordable or expensive as you make it. It is a large metropolitan city where you can find every level of dining, housing, shopping, and nightlife experience. For those on a budget, it is still possible to find a delicious traditional meal for five dollars or an apartment for under $1,000 a month, especially if you live with roommates. Check out this article about living costs in Panama City.
4. Ease of Travel
Panama is literally the country that connects Central and South America. The International Tocumen Airport is the hub of the Americas. It connects travelers to 38 countries and 89 destinations around the world. The ease of travel from Panama City is a tremendous advantage for young people looking to explore the world.
5. Escaping Politics of Home Country
The polarizing political climate in many countries around the world is causing people of all ages to reconsider the place they call home.
Millennials want a government that respects their rights while still supporting its most vulnerable populations. Panama has a very cool political climate, in the sense that candidates can only campaign 45 days before party primary elections and 60 days before general elections.
The people elect their president every 5 years. The government is a democratic republic with a multi-party system, rather than the two-party system I am used to from the United States.
The millennials are setting a new standard for quality of life. They appreciate the ability to travel more than a brand-new Mercedes-Benz. They invest in experiences rather than a 4,000 square foot home. They are defining their own standard of success. And why not? Define that success in Panama City, a place with so many benefits; it offers a path to happiness and freedom in paradise.
by: Megan Thompson