The third populated city in Panama, Tocumen is situated within the Greater Metropolis of Panama district. The international airport is situated here and caters to the international traffic that tourists bring with them. That is one of the reasons that the employment opportunities are high. There many students, tourists, returning citizens and even diplomats call it home for a short or long term. For faster and easier commuting, they import their vehicles and enjoy the tropical weather in Panama.
If you are contemplating working or staying in Tocumen, it is important to have your own vehicle shipped from USA. But it is not as easy as it sounds because there is a lot of paperwork, permits and Custom duties or taxes to pay in USA and Panama. Only after that can you get the delivery of your vehicle. That is one of the reasons that A1 Auto Transport Service has a large network of experienced shipping agents that will work with you in USA and offer the same quality of assistance in Panama. We are aware of the shipping and import laws in Panama and can offer assistance at every step of the procedure. Offering door to port and port to port services at an additional cost, we can pick up your car from USA and deliver it to you in Tocumen. There are documents to submit at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and when the vehicle enters the Panama port. You will be required to file:
- Vehicle owner’s identification- Passport/driving license.
- Original Bill of Purchase.
- US-bought Insurance proof.
- Title deed.
- Car Registration documents.
- Import permit from Panama government.
Before you start the procedure of shipping which includes letting the US Customs about your intent to ship, the essential documents will need to be submitted for verification at least 3-4 days before you ship. Similarly, these documents must be submitted by the shipping service at the Panama Customs. Check the map of ports in US to select the one that is closest to your location and in Panama, your vehicle will be offloaded at Port of Cristobal, Port of Balboa or El Puerto de Bocas del Toro.
You will need to account not only the freight charges but the additional custom duties and taxes that have to be cleared at both the ports. The total cost of shipping the vehicle will depend upon the cost of the vehicle, freight charges and insurance that you will pay while the vehicle is in transit. The way you ship will leave a mark on the cost. As RORO is cheap and Container shipping is expensive, you can decide which method to select. Currently, the Panama custom and excise duty is 30% of the vehicle’s CIF value.
If you intend shipping household goods along with the vehicle, you need to select container shipping herein you can hire 20 feet or 40 feet shipping container, secure and seal everything inside it. On the contrary, if you select Roll-on/Roll-Off shipping method, the car is driven on an open deck and harnessed in a bay. You are not allowed to keep any personal belongings inside the vehicle and it has to be completely clean, empty and locked.
We’ll be happy to get the documentation and transportation procedures completed so you can focus on other aspects of the move. For more information on importing vehicles, call in the Embassy of Panama in USA.
Written By:Joe Webster
Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing.
After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood.
With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.