Leaving the vehicle in Panama and leaving the country

Panama has unique places that invite relaxation and meditation. And that has made us stay longer than expected in this country that never ceases to amaze us. So the option of leaving the vehicle in Panama and leaving the country was one of the options that we set out to go to visit the family for Christmas in Barcelona.

Marià disfrutando de la salida del sol en Bocas del Toro

Enter Panama with your own vehicle

When you enter Panama with your own vehicle, at Customs you are marked with your passport to record that you entered with your own tourist vehicle, and that you are obliged to leave the country with the same vehicle.

Renew the temporary export permit for the vehicle in Panama

Likewise, in Customs you only get 1 month of permission of stay for the van, which you can renew up to 6 times in a year, approaching any of the customs offices that exist throughout the country. The process is fast, easy and free. Only the SOAT (the compulsory insurance of the car) that is in force for the next month we are requesting must be shown.

Leave the vehicle in Panama and leave the country

Being in Panama, if we consider leaving the vehicle somewhere and leaving the country without it, we must do two procedures before, because otherwise, it is more likely that we will not be allowed to leave the border.

Fiscal deposit in Panama

The first thing is to choose in what fiscal deposit we want to leave the van, a mandatory condition to be able to stop the legal time to the van. There are several private deposits throughout the country, especially in the capital, although the price is quite high, about $ 15 per day, plus an entry fee of about $ 80.

Depósito fiscal de Aduanas de David, Panamá


The most economic and the only public level in the country, is the tax warehouse that is in the Customs of the city of David. It is located on Av. Red Gray, just after the Pepe Workshop.

In this space, the price is $ 1 for the first 30 business days, and $ 2 from day 31 onwards. Holidays or weekends do not count, so it is much cheaper than other private options.

In addition, you have the customs office in the same place, so the process is much simpler and more practical. They were left with the entry papers to the country, and they stuck this sheet in the van and gave us another one like proof to take us.

Upon returning, after two months out, the total bill was $ 56.

David’s customs only opens from Monday to Friday and holidays are also closed. Before you can remove the vehicle, you have to do the SOAT again. In the same city of David, there is a Fedpa Insurance office, on Avenida 4a Este, very close to the Miguel de Cervantes Park. In 2019, they charged us $ 25 for a month.

Prepare the van to leave it in the tank

It is very important to prepare the van to leave it in the tank. The van is outdoors, and in this part of the country it rains a lot in winter (between May and November) and it is very hot in summer (between December and April). So the humidity is assured.

And that is a problem because with few days that the van is totally closed, everything begins to rot and anything from wood, clothes and backpacks as well as the structure of the van itself begins to fill with mold.

Marta limpiando a fondo la furgo con lavandina

Arena para gatos y naftalina para evitar la humedad dentro de la furgoneta

The first thing we did was to wash all surfaces of the van with water with bleach, to try to prevent or slow the release of mold. Then we prepare several containers with cat litter, which is ideal for trapping moisture, and we distribute them throughout the van.

We also add some naphthalene pellets, which keep moths away and help prevent mold. And finally, in the middle of the van we left a boat traps moisture.

Producto ideal para atrapar la humedad y evitar el moho

When we returned after two months, this boat was full of water, and luckily, the van was like new inside, so everything did its job very well!

The van stayed two months in the warehouse of David, among some fellow travelers, and the truth is that we left very quiet, since the facilities are monitored and the area is quiet.

We hope you find the information useful. If you need any extra information, do not hesitate to write to us at furgoenruta@gmail.com.

Una producción de MMVIATGES, productora audiovisual y multimedia

Furgo en ruta team

2 responses to “Leaving the vehicle in Panama and leaving the country”

  1. Victor jara

    Hola saludos …saludos desde chile consulta como lo hacen con los seguro para el vehículo para cruzar de país en país nosotros salimos esta semana en nuestra casa rodante y queremos saber cómo hacemos para pagar los seguros en cada país y por cuánto tiempo es cada seguro gracias

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