The Embassy of Canada in Panama wishes all participants to World Youth Day in Panama an enjoyable visit to Panama. Panama is a safe country, and most visits pass off without incident. From time to time problems can arise though; if you require assistance, the Canadian Embassy is here to help.
A few simple preparations before you start your journey will help ensure you have a safe and enjoyable visit. We encourage participants to take the following steps before coming to Panama.
GENERAL TRAVEL ADVICE
We recommend that you register with Global Affairs Canada before travelling to Panama to make it easier for us to contact you in an emergency. You can register in the Registration of Canadians Abroad (ROCA) here:
As you plan your visit, familiarise yourself with the Government of Canada’s travel advice for Panama:
Advice and information will be available on the Embassy’s social media platforms
TRAVEL TO AND FROM PANAMA
Make sure you have sufficient time to make travel connections.
Due to high numbers of visitors to Panama for World Youth Day, expect traffic congestion in and around the city. Up to 800,000 people are expected to take part in the final event on the programme: the Papal mass on 27 January 2019. The mass will take place in Metropark, Ciudad Radial (15 km from Cinta Costera) in the outskirts of the city of Panama. You should expect that it will take some time to leave the area after the mass ends. Plan your onward travel accordingly!
Canadian citizens must hold a valid passport to enter Panama. Under Panamanian law, you are required to have your ID readily accessible at all times or be able to produce identification quickly.
However, for this event it has been reported that for registered pilgrims or visitors it will be sufficient to keep a photocopy of the personal passport information page and the entry stamp page.
Ensure that your passport is valid for at least three months beyond the date of expected departure from Panama. Information on how to apply for a Canadian passport can be found below.
Be aware that replacement travel documents can be issued to people under 16 only with the consent of their parents or guardians. Consult the carrier for regulations regarding travel by unaccompanied travellers under the age of 18.
CANADIAN MINORS AND DUAL CITIZEN MINORS
We strongly recommend that Canadian children carry a consent letter if they are travelling abroad alone, with only one parent/guardian, with friends or relatives or with a group.
A consent letter is not a legal requirement in Canada, but it can simplify travel for Canadian children, as it may be requested by immigration authorities when entering or leaving a foreign country or by Canadian officials when re-entering Canada. The letter demonstrates that Canadian children have permission to travel abroad from parents or guardians who are not accompanying them.
For more information and an example of the consent letter, please see below.
If you are a Canadian-Panamanian dual national, you are going to be treated as a Panamanian citizen by the Panamanian authorities while in Panama.
For minors dual citizens Canada/Panama:
Even if the minor travels with a Canadian Passport and/or lives in Canada, a consent letter in Spanish signed by parents or guardians who are not accompanying the minor will be requested by Panamanian Immigration authorities when the minor leaves Panama.
The consent letter should be accompanied by a long form Birth Certificate and both documents should be authenticated by any Consul of Panama in Canada and for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Panama when you arrive to Panama.