Panama is a priviledged country within Latin America. It is fast becoming the preferred location for a second or retirement home for Americans and Europeans and for the corporate headquarters of international companies.
For its citizens, Panama is one of the top three of Latin American countries for quality of life: Health, education and economic well-being according to the United Nations.
Safety and Security
Panama received the highest rating for tourist safety. In Panama, there's no need to be constantly on guard against being robbed or assaulted, as is the case in so many Latin American countries.
Panama City- Another Miami but Better
There's a joke going around with a lot of truth in it. It is that Panama City is just like Miami except that in Panama City more people speak English and Americans are more popular.
Panama City is called a "second Miami" because of its sophisticated business district, high speed internet connections, the American-style infrastructure and the elegance of many of its neighborhoods. There are many ocean view apartments, a number suburban subdivisions with lovely Miami-style homes and fine established neighborhoods to choose from. Few other Latin American cities boast so many attractive neighborhoods.
Unlike other Latin Americans, Panamanians don't need to go shopping to Miami. Due to the lowest tariffs in the Americas, Panama is a shoppers paradise whether it be clothes, computers or electronics. Panamanian supermarkets can easily be mistaken for American supermarkets with their large selection of American products. Electronics stores compete in both price and selection with American stores.
There are even three Price-Costcos in Panama City and one in the West Panama city of David.
Private education is excellent: there are three accredited international schools and dozens of fine bilingual schools. At the university level, there a dozen universities, including three United States universities with branches in Panama City.
Excellent Medical Care
Medical care and hospital facilities are almost on a par with the USA, one of the many happy by products of the longtime American presence on the Isthmus.
And If Your Homesick...
Numerous fine restaurants compete in quality with almost any large American city. If you are homesick, try Bennigan's or TGIFriday's not to mention McDonalds, Wendys, Burger King, Pizza Hut, Dominos, KFC etc.
Panama also is a short plane ride away from the USA. There are direct flights to and from Panama from 10 USA cities. Newark and Houston (Continental), New York (Delta and Copa), Atlanta (Delta), Dallas (American), Washington D.C. (Copa), Miami (American and Copa), Los Angeles (Copa), Ft. Lauderdale (Spirit Air), and Orlando (Copa). The proximity also makes it easy for all those relatives who will want to come visit in this great country you discovered.
Evidence of Panama's quality of life, there is a reverse migration going on in recent years. Many Panamanians, residents in the US are moving back to Panama because they find the quality of life is simply better here. Panama has the highest growth rate in Latin America-10% and a major business boom with opportunities for many.
Their Paradise Lost
The 50,000 Americans who used to live in the former Panama Canal zone call Panama their "Paradise Lost". The majority are not happy living back in the United States. That should tell you something.
Panama is Blessed by Nature- No Hurricanes or Major Earthquakes
Even nature has blessed Panama. Due to a unique geographical position, there are no natural disasters. No hurricanes and destructive earthquakes which plague its Central American neighbors.
Panama is not a utopia. 38% of its citizens live in poverty. Corruption is a major problem, less than in most other Latin American countries but still a problem. But relative to other places, many well traveled citizens of the world are deciding that Panama is one of the best place on earth to live.