Panama - budget reflection

Woooah! This is an expensive country. We were very wrong with our travel estimation and it seems like it never ends. We are off our budget for months which means money is dwindling as fast as ice melts in the tropics. We knew we might be off in some countries due to time (our estimation was made a year or two ago), but having such a bad budget streak was not our expectation.

As we are mixing slow and quick travel, we were planning to stay in Central America for a short period of time; in a quick travel category. After Panama, it seems like this was a good decision, at least money wise.

We spent our time in two destinations; Panama City and Bocas Del Toro as we only wanted to stay here for a week. After seeing the budget disaster, you will see why we left even a day earlier than expected. In Panama City we stayed in a hostel and cooked only one meal in the shared kitchen as groceries were just as expensive as eating out. We used local buses if walking was not possible or just too long. Regarding activities we managed to do two things we wanted; seeing Panama Canal and do the chocolate plantation tour with the Ngobe tribe. As it was our wedding anniversary, we also splurged (although the price was reasonable) on an island boat tour with one snorkeling stop included.

Our Panama trip was shortened by a day at our choice. The estimation was GBP 15.00 per person per day and we went over for almost a double. Nevertheless, we (at least I) enjoyed the chocolate plantation. Who could say they had a horrible time if there was presence of chocolate?


Sum per person (no visa required)

Estimated total cost: 90.00 GBP

Actual cost:  160.85 GBP

Off budget: - 70.85 GBP

COST PER DAY (per person)

Estimated per day: 15.00 GBP (no visa required) BUDGET

Actual cost: 26.81 GBP BUDGET

The route (googlemymaps)

The route (googlemymaps)