We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Cell phone while in Panama

Which Panama City hotels are on sale?
dd/mm/yyyy dd/mm/yyyy
See hotels
Burlington, Vermont
6 posts
1 review
Save Topic
Cell phone while in Panama

My husband and I don't own a cell phone, but would like to have a cell phone with us while we travel in Panama. Does anybody have any suggestions for a pay as you go phone that will work in Panama? Thank you

sacheen lake,wa
4 posts
Save Reply
1. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

you should be able to buy a pay as you go cell phone when you get to panama. there should be a kiosk at the airport. i bought a cheap phone in costa rica for about $30 and loaded minutes as i went. i used it and both costa rica and nicaragua last spring. all you need to do is change the sim card. i am planning on using this same phone next week when i get to panama. the phone companies will help you with everything.

although any us carrier will tell you that their phones work internationally, many times they dont. if they do it is outragous roaming charges. good luck.

Panama City, Panama
Level Contributor
13,583 posts
24 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

Are you wanting the phone mainly for calling places within Panama - then as mentioned, get a cheap local phone and SIM card. There are several different companies - their coverage does vary apparently. I use Mas Movil.

Burlington, Vermont
6 posts
1 review
Save Reply
3. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

I think we would want a card mainly for calling within Panama, but one that wouldn't be too much of a pain if we needed to call back to the US. I don't forsee needing to make many calls.

Medellin, Colombia
Destination Expert
for Panama City
Level Contributor
3,715 posts
97 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

The rates calling back to the States are not too bad using a local phone, just follow the above advice.

Also if you have a tablet you can download skype or another service and use it to call back to the States when you have free wifi for pennies, lots of free wifi available at various resturants, malls etc...

Edited: 19 March 2013, 11:32
Level Contributor
84 posts
78 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

Great advice above. However sometimes you have just landed somewhere and need to make a call, but your US cell phone doesn't work in that country (different frequencies) and there is nowhere in sight where you could buy a local SIM card or a cheap phone (and learn how to dial locally). What then?

For years I have been using www.mobal.com. Their calls within any country are not cheap, about US$1.50/min, but they work. No monthly charges ever, for $9 you buy a lifetime SIM card that works in 190 countries and only when you use it will it result in a charge to your credit card. For $29 you can buy a (tri-frequency) phone that works in 170 countries (but not in the US) or for $69 one (quad frequency) that is good in 190 countries - incl the US. Then, once you buy a local country SIM card you can simply swap it in. I do this in the US with a GoPhone (pay-as-you-go) SIM card from AT&T - no contracts.

PS- I am not affiliated with Mobal in any way!

Auburn, Alabama
1 post
1 review
Save Reply
6. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

My Verizon iphone 5 worked perfectly. The SIM card had to be cut to fit the slot for just $2.00. You can go to a little chinese cell phone repair store in downtown. I then bought $5.00 +Movil card and had data and air time for a week.

Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
20 posts
1 review
Save Reply
7. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

just spend 20$ on a local cheap phone on the Mas Movil network (or digicell as a second choice)

8. Re: Cell phone while in Panama

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 22 June 2014, 06:19