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David, Panama

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David, Panama: Retiring, Cost of Living and Lifestyle

Apartment or House Ownership Budget (for a couple)

Expense Monthly Cost Notes
MortgageNot included here as too variable.
HOA Fees
Property Taxes:
Transportation $20 Community bus and occasional taxi.
Gas
(cooking/heating)
$8 Per tank.
Electricity $40 Average without air conditioning.
Water $15
Cell phone $35 Using Movistar prepaid minutes.
Internet $55 Includes Cable TV and a landline.
Cable TV Bundled with the internet.
Household help $40 Cleaning once every two weeks.
Entertainment $180 Eating out twice a week at a mid-range, local restaurant; drinks twice a week at a nearby watering hole; movie theater trip twice a month.
Groceries $400 Basic items for a couple. This includes wine, beer, and some imported organic foods.
Gym membership
Medical appointment $15 Basic checkup in a public hospital.
TOTAL $891

Apartment or House Rental Budget

Expense Monthly Cost Notes
Rent $600 In a desirable part of town (city center, if applicable), furnished, two-bedroom, comfortable apartment.
Transportation $20 Community bus and occasional taxi. Might be a bit more or less depending on the frequency of use.
Gas (cooking/heating)$8 Per tank.
Electricity $40 Average without air conditioning.
WaterIncluded in rent.
Cell phone $35 Using Movistar prepaid minutes.
Internet $55 Includes Cable TV and a landline.
Cable TV Comes bundled with the internet.
Household help $40 Cleaning once every two weeks.
Entertainment $180 Eating out twice a week at a mid-range, local restaurant; drinks twice a week at a nearby watering hole; movie theater trip twice a month.
Groceries $400 Basic items for a couple. This includes wine, beer, and some imported organic foods.
Gym membership
Medical appointment $25 Basic checkup in a public hospital.
TOTAL $1,384

Penny-Pincher’s Budget (for a couple, bare minimum costs for all)

Expense Monthly Cost Notes
Rent: $400 Cheapest part of town (still desirable), most basic one-bedroom rental.
Transportation $10 Cheapest forms of public transport; assuming a bit less movement.
Gas$8 Per tank.
Electricity $30 Without air conditioning.
Water Included in the rent.
Cell phone $20 Cheapest option available.
Internet$48 Basic internet.
Cable TV Most basic cable. Bundled with the internet.
Entertainment $40 Eating out once a week at a local restaurant.
Groceries$300 All local-brand items only, shopping markets and local vendors along with grocery stores.
TOTAL $856

Eating Out:

  • A beer: $2 to $6
  • Rum & Coke (or other local drink): about $5
  • A coffee: $2
  • A sandwich (or equivalent): $5

Average cost of a meal out per person: $10

Cost Of Car/Motor Bike Ownership:

  • Vehicle insurance: $400 per year.
  • Fuel: Depends on your car usage. It can be anywhere from $20 a month in town to $100 for greater distances.
  • Upkeep: $200 to $300 per year, depending on condition of vehicle.
  • Monthly payments: N/A
  • Parking: N/A

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