Customs Security Pre-Check to Start in Panama

Panama to Unroll Customs Security Pre-Check to Help Ease Customs Process for Tourists

Mar 1, 2016 | Moving to Panama, Panama News

Panama has just announced that they will roll out a national, online security pre-check for both locals and foreigners entering the country. The pre-check will be on online registry where international travelers can keep their travel data and records. This registry will allow Panamanian customs and immigrations services process your entry faster, and alleviate some of the growing wait times at Tocumen. Similar security pre-checks have been available for some years now in the US, and Panama’s system should be similar, and work well along with it. This means, as a frequent traveler between the United States and Panama, you could potentially save hours of travel time on each side of your trip.

How to enroll in pre-check

According to a recent release by Panama’s customs and immigration service, enrolling in the new Panama pre-check will require you to open an account through their website or app. Once you’re registered, and open your account through their system, you will have up to 14 days before your flight to enter your travel security information through it. Think of this as filling out the customs card you get on your way, but ahead of time. Once you’ve filled out your pre-check information, you can pass through customs and immigration by simply scanning your ID to access your account. You can also track your own trips through the account, and modify your information as your needs change.

Why a security pre-check-in can help boost tourism in Panama

Panama relies heavily on tourism for its economic well-being, and this means a huge amount of people entering the country each year. In 2015, Panama had around 2.3 million visitors, an increase of nearly 15% on the previous year, however a bit short of projections. One of the biggest draws to Panama is the number of direct flights from international destinations, and the airports and customs agencies are trying to keep up with demand. Quicker processing at immigration means that more flights can leave on time, and the quality of experience of the traveler will greatly increase.

Focusing on tourism is a good sign from Panama’s government

Efficiency aside, Panama’s announcement of a pre-check is also a great sign that Panama is focusing on tourism as a priority. Panama is looking to invest heavily in drawing in more international tourism, as the economy grows to serve a more diverse and demanding crowd. Tourism in Panama not only benefits the service industry, it also helps build demand for ancillary businesses to invest in Panama’s infrastructure and economy. Panama’s economy is still growing, and diversifying, and tourism dollars will help to create a healthy base for overall economic growth.

Will Panama’s pre-check affect your immigration status or entry visas?

The short answer is no; your immigration and visa status will remain the same. Panama’s new pre-check will simply log your customs/immigration information into a database. This is the same information you must usually present in person, each time when you enter Panama. Your immigration status, if it changes, can be updated through the government’s website or app, and visa status will be recorded the same as it would be if you entered without the pre-check. To learn more about Panama’s new security pre-check and how it will work, check out their website.

International Relocation Firm Staff Writer

International Relocation Firm Staff Writer

As one of the leading Panama Law Firms, and one of the regions most reliable service providers, International Relocation Firm brings a wide range of professional knowledge to our clients needs. Our staff is made up of professional consultants, Panama attorneys and immigration specialists who are experienced in international relocation, and are experts in providing a seamless Panama immigration process.

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