Panama launches Digital Nomad Visa

The Panama digital nomad visa announcement comes as the traditional office, a pillar of our pre-pandemic work-life, continues to crumble.


Attaining the expat lifestyle once meant finding a job in a distant land or bouncing around on short-term tourist visas." JACOB GERSHMAN for the The Wall Street Journal

But Panama, along with a list of other countries, are changing that reality with incentives like digital nomad visas.  The Short Stay Visa for Remote Work, as established in the Executive Decree N°198 of May 7th of 2021, allows foreigners contracted by a foreign company to work remotely in Panama for 9 months (with the option to extend for another 9 months for an 18 month total).

Requirements to qualify for the Panama Short Stay Visa: 

* Executes functions that are effective outside of the country.

* Receives income from an exterior source and the amount is no less than B./36,000 USD. 

For a full list of requirements for applying for Panama’s Digital Nomad Visa visit Panama Living. 

The road ahead for digital nomads in Panama 

Connie Lin writes for Fast Company: 

"Of course, the road is still littered with obstacles, such as finding healthcare—a requirement of many digital nomad visas—or navigating tax legislation specific to companies, which could be forced to pay foreign duties if enough of their workers settle in a given country. But for the true believers, that hardly matters; the spirit of the nomad electrifies." 

Final thoughts on Panama’s short-stay visa. 

Panama is positioned to become a top contender as a digital nomad destination with various expat health insurance options along with convenient tax legislation, currency, and location.  But, digital nomads are looking for more than just a country that looks good on paper. If the destination fails to satisfy their wanderlust, professional nomads won’t stay long. So, whether or not Panama will be the next exotic escape for digital nomads depends on how the country chooses to protect its greatest asset, its biodiversity.