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Thank you for this great site!

I am a 33 year old married man from South Africa, we have a beautiful little 6 year old daughter. I am self employed and my wife works as a PA for a firm. I love my country, I really do, but the crime and political climate has become so bad that I really need to get my family to a safe country so my daughter has a chance at a normal life.   

I look forward to learn and perhaps make some friends.

Hope you all are having a wonderful day!

I think your biggest challenge will be earning a living in Panama. Most jobs are reserved for Panamanians only and the pay is low. Most expats work remotely on line or have their own business. If you can figure that out, you can have a very good life here. If you are on Facebook, look for a group - Expats in Panama. I've seen a number of people with children in the group and they can probably be very helpful to you.

Wish you the best mi amigo.

Thanks Gmlogmd, luck I might be needing in spades good sir

@Kristc99 - From what I gather certain professions are reserved for Panamanians, Dr's etc. I run a office automation business (printer repairs) as such I am a technician by trade. I assume that my profession/trade will not fall under these restrictions - when searching for a job. Generally my trade is in demand. However, I have read that companies in Panama can only hire 10% foreign. I also do not speak Spanish.

Given the exchange rate I would probably not have enough capital to start a business. But If I had to start a business it would be fish-farming (Tilapia) given that the weather for it is IDEAL and people need to eat.

I am aware that salaries are low in Panama. I am OK with that. I can build my life up again and later start a business. What is most important to me is getting my family out of South Africa before something happens to us. Things are really really bad over here!

I am cautiously optimistic that Panama works out. I still have a great deal to learn.

Is there perhaps a recruitment agency that you could recommend... one that other members on here have used with success?

You have heard the same info as I have. We are retired though so I haven't looked into finding work, so I don't know more than what I've already said. It is a peaceful happy life here and I really hope it works out for you and your family.

You know Krist... if I told you how bad matters really are you would probably not believe me. For instance, in parliament they are busy discussing the seizure of all white owned land without compensation. SA is the protest capital of the world, google it (not talking picket lines, but petrol bombs and looting). Our president sings songs in public like "Kill the Boer (white man)" and "Bring me my machine gun" (on You Tube). There are over 130 laws that directly discriminate against white people. It's not too dissimilar to Germany in the 30's regarding Jews. Then we have crime and murder on a scale that is difficult to comprehend. I could go on for pages and even volumes more. I will rather not talk about what we have been through already... what I have seen that cannot be unseen. When I look into my daughters eyes I know that I will and simply must get her out of here.

Hello, good that you ask before you come. I will explain the situation for you. But first please take my advice: DO NOT GO TO PANAMA FOR WORK! Please do not go if you are not rich! Please do not do the mistake for you and your family! You are completely off thinking that Panama is a good place to work! It is not! Please do not do the error and come here when you do not have minimum 100 000 Dollar in your Bank account!!! And now let me explain you in short: there is no need for technician in Panama, there are no jobs, you can maybe get some low paid job and you will spend all your money on renting apartment. You will not be able to support your family. All jobs are in the city but life in the city is expensive you need like 20 dollar per day per person only for food. Renting a single room apartment is minimum 600 dollar in a better area 1000 dollar a month plus transportation internet and electricity you need as a single person minimum 1500 dollar a month to survive in the city as a family you will need like 3000 dollar a month. Nobody will employ you especially when you don't speak spanish. And as i say they don't need more workers, they have enought from colombia and venezuela. I tell you 100% you will go down and end up in the street when you come here. Please do not do it please please. If you want to work go to malaysia or new zealand or australia. Panama is completely wrong. You wont make it here. People are terrible slow they do not react to advertising, they will just waste your time and your money and never give you any work. From my personal experience i can tell you - south africa is more developed )or at least was) than Panama. I lived many years in africa, i still have connections, why dont you go to ghana or togo for work or ivory coast? I lived in these countries and its not that bad.

CrouseD I met a couple white guys from South Africa over the weekend and they said there were unsafe areas to avoid, and they live in a secured neighborhood, but they felt generally OK. But, if you don't feel safe I don't blame you for wanting to get your family out.
Mr Negativity above obviously has had a different experience than most of us but it's very true that making a living here will be your biggest obstacle, and Panama City is not like the rest of the country in cost of living and hassle factor.

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