Any idea of the turnover of residents in Boquete?  I know many people have different reasons for why it turns out to not be for them. I'm curious, because I read a little of this, and a little of that, so I want to know. Do you think, other than the obvious things like family tug, or health reasons, some folks just didn't think it through enough. I can't imagine money is a reason to leave, when it seems money saved would be a reason to move there in the first place. So you folks with your ears to the ground have to know what else makes them leave. My wife and I have done so much research on the Boquete area, I can't imagine someone living in Boquete would want to up and leave Panama, and start that process all over in another country. But......maybe it's just Boquete they're leaving, not Panama. Thoughts?

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Very helpful information. Thank you to both Howard and Robert. My wife and I are both enrolling in Spanish classes this fall in San Antonio, where we reside. We both agree, it makes life much easier if you can speak the language, as I’m sure you’re less apt to get frustrated when you can’t understand why things are why they are. 

Good idea to bring some spanish with you. I've been here 4 years and seen over 50 people leave from Boquete. It is said there are over 50,000 American Expats living in Panama.  People leave for a number of reasons. If you like it you will stay. Google some other cities in panama and ask around. We travel to a new location every Sunday for adventure. I would never try to convince anyone to live here. Test the waters and if you don't like move on to more happy grounds. For me, blending in with the locals is more important than being an Expat.


Hi, Bob:  regarding your Spanish classes this fall in San Antonio, that is an excellent beginning.  However don't be surprised if, when you arrive, you also need to pick up on the local idioms.  Boqueteño Spanish has some substitutions which are easy enough to pick up on by learning to simply ask,"Cómo se dice _____?" and "Puede hablar más despacio para mi?"  My Spanish has gotten more fluent and I understand more quickly over time simply by practicing with everyone I can every day. People here are very kind to help you understand if you show sincere interest.  I have also downloaded the Google Translate app to my phone and learn new words all the time, plus it comes in handy on the go!!  Good luck and enjoy!  

Good advice Nicole.  I haven't had much luck getting them to speak mas despacio, but I am learning to keep up with them.  Practice, practice.

:-) :-) :-) 

Great idea to start with Spanish classes in San Antonio. I recommend individual classes. The common Panamanian speak fast and with a dialect, like you go to a small town in Texas trying to understand their English.

Read a few of these...they are very interesting!etd.send_file?accession=ohiou1245254852&disposition=inline

Here are some questions to ask yourself that might give you a gauge on if you will like being an Expat:

1.  Are you a "go with the flow" type of personality?  Or are you a "my way or it's wrong" type of personality?

2.  Are you willing to experiment with just about everything?  For instance some foods that are common in the US are not found here.  You will need to try different brands or even different foods all together.  Depending on where you live here, you might not be able to get cable or satellite TV, so you may have to experiment with Internet TV; things like that.  Don't be afraid to try new things!

3.  Do you have respect for different cultures and can you acknowledge that things are done differently in places than what we do in the United States?  Part of what I love about Latin America is their laid back approach to life.  But at times that is a double edge sword.  When you schedule work to be done and the worker is late or shows up a day later, you have to accept that.  The main thing to remember is that is their way, it is not yours.  We now live in THEIR country, not the other way around.  Adapting more like a willow tree that bends will make things a lot easier that being a mighty oak!

Final note:  Look at the glass half full.  Look at the beauty of things and people instead of the negatives.  Don't try to "fix" things.  Go with the flow!  If a Panamanian knows that you respect their country and are trying your best to adjust to living in their country, 99% of them will bend over backward to help you.  Now that my husband and I are used to being around the Panamanian people and their big hearts and joy, I can't imaging moving back to the US.  I would be sad!

  Good thoughts Elaine, did you ever get the walls in your place fixed. lol  Patience is a virtue. Hope to see you guys again soon.  

Bryan, funny!!  Yes, we got everything fixed!  And, we got a small grill for the balcony, so we are loving everything!  Hurry up and move down here and we will party!


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