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Daryl Ries of Keller Williams Panama, associate – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Condo overlooking the golf course and the Pacific Ocean, Coronado, Panama – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingI’m a survivor of two blackouts in New York City. Whoa! And any blackouts I’ve experienced anywhere are nothing compared to that.
 
In Panama, there are at worst, brownouts, and these were momentary. Most of the condo buildings have generators and so the problem is quickly solved. In contrast to what happened in New York, nothing like that ever happened in Panama. And now with solar and wind energy being seriously developed here there should be enough electrical resource to meet the tremendous growth that Panama is seeing.
 
(Condo overlooking the golf course and the Pacific Ocean, Coronado, Panama, pictured.)
Lourdes Townshend of Multimodal  & Logistic Transports Magazine – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
US Navy frigate being pulled through the Panama Canal using electrical locomotive , Panama  – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingAs we always say:   Anything can happen in a particular place in the world.
 
With this said, we can just assume that Panamá is not different from other places.  For example, we lived for a time in a small town in northwest Florida, and we DID have blackouts occasionally... and electricity wasn´t cheap.
 
In Panamá, we can expect some blackouts, yes.  Sometimes it takes hours to restore power, and yes, some businesses are hurt, because their product is very sensitive to the heat, like chickens, which has been most of the cases, or mini markets that don’t have   back-up plant to cover this situation.  It is different in high rise or office buildings, which usually do have back-up power.
 
We have two major electrical providers, depending on the area you live.  The most common cause for blackouts are the transformers, that collapse because the excess of population, the result of thousands of foreigners arriving to this country.   At the beginning the newcomers were only from the United States, and some from Europe.  Now there is a massive exodus from Venezuela, Colombia, and some from Dominican Republic and Nicaragua coming, especially to the city of Panamá, which is very small.  Other times, blackouts are due to heavy electrical storms, common in the Tropics.
 
But fortunately, this is all a minor issue, in that Panamá does not have snow, earthquakes, tornados or any of those major situations like other parts of the world.  We are blessed with beautiful weather and extraordinary vegetation and a rainforest all year round.
 
So, even with minor eventual problems in electricity and water situations, and housing and land prices raising every day, yes, this is sometimes frustrating, but Panamá has been, is, and always will be a paradise, because Panamanians are warm and always welcome visitors.
 
Not to mention, that in January of 2019, for those interested in international events, Panamá will host one of the most amazing visits:  Pope Francis.
 
(Panama Canal using electrical locomotive to Naval , Panama, pictured. ) 
Kathya de Chong of Alto Boquete Condominios – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Top of the line appliances at Alto Boquete Condominios, Boquete, Panama – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThe electricity in Panama is reliable. I’ve been in Panama my whole life, and typically we only get blackouts in Panama City once a month lasting for about 10 minutes, or none at all. If the power is out for an hour, you’ll know that there is a major problem and it will probably take longer before they can fix it.
 
Here in Boquete, where I’ve been for three years, we get about two blackouts in a month on average that also typically last 10 minutes. 
 
When I was in Panama City, I didn’t have a backup generator in my house because we didn’t need it. I don’t have one here in Boquete, either. Most of the time, the condominiums or buildings have individual generators because of elevators and other services that should not be interrupted. Most of the houses in Panama don’t use back-up generators because it’s just not that big a deal. 
 
Most of the time during the windy season here in Panama, which is between January and March, we get most of the blackouts. Because of the strong winds during these months, we would sometimes lose power twice a month. In those cases you may consider having surge suppressors to protect your appliances.  
 
(Top of the line appliances at Alto Boquete Condominios, Boquete, Panama, pictured.)
Jesahely De Janon of Panama Property Attorneys – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
House in Chiriqui province, Panama – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingElectricity is reliable in Panama City. I cannot remember the last time we had a blackout. It does not happen frequently. However, there are some parts in the country that experience blackouts. In my residential home, we only had a blackout twice or thrice per year. Blackouts usually last for one hour.  
 
(Middle class home in rural Chiriqui province, Panama, pictured.)
Eddie Montes of Panama Property Rentals – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Pedasi, Panama yard – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThere are cases of blackouts and brownouts in Panama but for the most part, especially in the San Francisco and in the Punta Pacifica area of Panama City, the grid is quite reliable. In the last 8 months or so that I have been here, I can say that we have not experienced any blackouts in the Punta Pacifica area of Panama City.
 
The beach areas and the areas in the interior of Panama do not have such a good track record as far as electricity reliability is concerned. Is it not a major issue but it is more likely to have a blackout in the interior part of the country of Panama than in Panama City.  
 
(In the interior, Pedasi, Panama, pictured.)
Iván Eskildsen of Cubitá Group – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Catedral de San Juan Bautista – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingPanama doesn’t really have blackouts or brownouts.  Panamanian electricity is very reliable, with very few blackouts. In Chitré, where I’m located, about 160 miles west of Panama City, we don't have any sort of problems with the stability of our electricity either. 
 
In a typical month, electricity usually won't go out at all. In the entire five years I've been here in Chitré, the electricity has gone out perhaps a few times.  
 
(Lit up at night, the Catedral de San Juan Bautista in Chitre, Panama, pictured.)
Jonathan Stolarz of COSTA LINDA RESIDENCE CLUB – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Panama City, Panama skyline at night – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingThere are blackouts and brownouts in Panama, but they usually only happens during the month of April.  The reason is that the electricity in Panama comes from the water in the dams, and there’s no rain in Panama from January to March, so no electricity is produced.
 
Blackouts or brownouts don’t happen that often though, maybe just one or two days.  And in every residential and commercial building we have back-up generators, so when power outages happen you will still have light, air conditioning, and everything else inside your residence.
 
(Panama City, Panama skyline and shoreline at night, pictured.)
Bill Hamilton of Bill Hamilton – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
The electricity is reliable in Panama City. We hardly ever had problems. Blackouts and brownouts occurred maybe once or twice a year.
 
In Calobre, in the sticks, where we live now, during about five months, we’ve had two blackouts and brownouts. It was not for long, either. It only lasted for about 10 or 20 minutes.
 
We live out in the countryside, in Calobre.  I can give you an example of how much we pay.  Our water, electricity for central heating, pump for the water, lights all around the house, sensors day and night lights cost US $126 per month.
David Whittington of Tucan Golf Club and Resort – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
There are some brownouts in Panama, and at the odd time the power may go out for three to five hours or so, but the frequency and likelihood of this happening is rare and seems to be based on where you live in Panama and which company supplies your power.
 
For example, many of my neighbors where I used to live up in Boquete had small generators that they would use from time to time.  Since I’ve been living down here in Arraijan (just over the two bridges that go from the center of Panama City over the Canal) for the last four months, we’ve had the odd outage, but nothing of any significant length of time; over 10 – 15 minutes or so.  Nothing terrible at all.
Vannessa Solano of Activentas, S.A. – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
We normally don’t have blackouts.  We have Gatun Dam Power Generator Panama – Best Places In The World To Retire – International Livinggood electrical service in Panama, and it’s not expensive.
 
However, Panama generates its electricity primarily from hydroelectric plants from two dams—one that serves Panama City and one located in the province of Chiriqui.  For these plants to work, there has to be sufficient rainfall, to fill the rivers and lakes.
 
In the city of Panama, there are can be times during the summer season (otherwise known as the dry season) when it doesn’t rain as much as usual, so towards the end of the summer, there are times when our hydroelectric plants are not able to produce as much electricity as during the rainy season.  At those times, we may be asked to conserve so as to not run out of electricity completely, for example, to shut off the air conditioning for certain times during the day, perhaps from 11 AM to 3 PM or sometimes from 8 AM to noon.  The maximum this would happen would be for a month, and it doesn’t happen every year.
 
The rest of the country outside of Panama City does not generally have these interruptions in electricity.
Renate Jope of Panama Premium Real Estate – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Electricity is pretty reliable, we operate on 110V, airconditioners operate on 220V, so it's pretty much up to par with the United States.

There are brown and blackouts at times, pretty unpredictable, although pretty rare.  I always have a flashlight and some candles nearby, just in case.   Also, I would protect my refrigerator and PC and other important equipment such as TV's etc with a surge protector.

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