Steps To Send Money To Panama Better Than Before

PanamaSend money to Panama – a country that connects two oceans and continents with a world of opportunities.

Panama plays a key role in Central America with its positioning that allows trade to be connected between South and North America, as well as the Pacific and Atlantic oceans.

Much of Panama’s consistently high annual GDP (above 6%) is made from tolls allocated to these connecting ports, but commerce, banking and tourism are major and growing sectors.

Canada and Panama established relations in 1961 and in 2009 signed a bilateral free trade agreement. While not many Panamanians live in Canada, quite a few Canadians retire or work in Panama. With ongoing business, trades, tourism and immigration, it is necessary that there is a way to send funds between the two nations affordably and simply.

With specialist money transfer services operating between Canada and Panama, there are many affordable ways to send money between the two nations. Furthermore, most Canadian banks will allow you to transfer money between Canada and Panama.

Compare Money Transfer Services

Rates last updated February 19th, 2018
Name Product Min. Transfer Amount Transfer Speed Services Online Transfer Fee Rate Amount Received Description
TorFX International Money Transfers
USD 150
1 day
Online, Phone, Agent
TorFX guarantee to beat any competitor's exchange rate for a transaction. Conditions apply.

Send money overseas in 45 currencies.
Exclusive: World First International Money Transfers
USD 1,000
1 day
Online, Phone
Exclusive offer: $0 transfer fee and discounted exchange rates for your first trade only.
A higher exchange rate applies to non-finder customers. Send money in more than 130 currencies.
TransferWise International Money Transfers
1 - 2 days
Make online transfers with transparent exchange rates, low fees and low minimum amounts.
Exclusive: OFX (Ozforex) International Money Transfers
USD 150
1 day
Online, Phone, Agent
Exclusive offer: Discounted exchange rates for your first and ongoing transactions. $0 transfer fee.
A higher exchange rate applies to non-finder customers. Send money in 45 currencies.
FC Exchange International Money Transfers
FC Exchange International Money Transfers
GBP 1,000
1 day
Online, Phone, Bank Account to Bank Account
FC Exchange can save you money with its Best Exchange Rate Guarantee. Conditions apply.

No transfer fee when transferring more than £10,000 or equivalent. Send money in 43 currencies.
Compass Global Markets International Money Transfers
1 day
Online, Phone
Send money overseas in at least 140 currencies.
HiFX International Money Transfers
NZD 50
2 days
Online, Phone, Agent
Make your first transfer for free. Transfer money between 20 currencies, and enjoy schedule regular transfers.
Currency Solutions International Money Transfers
GBP 3,000
2 days
Online, Phone, Bank Account to Bank Account
Send money in 39 currencies.
The ‘Rate’ and ‘Amount Received’ displayed are indicative rates that have been supplied by each brand or gathered by Finder.

Exchange rates are volatile and change often. As a result, the exchange rate listed on Finder may vary to the actual exchange rate quoted for the brand. Please confirm the actual exchange rate and mention “Finder” before you commit to a brand.

Compare up to 4 providers

Case study: money transfer companies

Shanade is an investor from Vancouver that has recently been contacted by a group of investors in Panama. Part of her feasibility analysis of the opportunity is to make sure she will not lose large amounts of money in the process of sending capital through Panama.

She has made some comparisons between specialist money transfer companies that will send money to Panama from Canada. She could only do comparisons in USD, which is supported in Panama, and used an amount of $1,000 CAD to evaluate the differences in transfer costs. Shanade knows that the currency will have to be exchanged again from USD to the local PAB currency.

Money transfer company AMoney transfer company B
Exchange rate$1 CAD = 0.77 USD$1 CAD = 0.767 USD
Transfer fee$4 CAD$30 CAD
Amount of USD received in Panama for 1,000 CAD$768.51 USD$767.70 USD
Transfer timeMinutesMinutes
Transfer optionsOnlineOnline, by phone or in person
Difference in X+$0..81 USD

Although Shanade will only save less than US$1 sending the money with transfer company 1, she must take into account that she will also save CAD$26 on transaction fees each time she sends money. If she were to send money for 12 months in a row, this saving alone would be CAD$312. Both services also send the money within minutes, however she can only send the money online with transfer company 1 and only cash pickup is available. Since this works well for her recipient, choosing company 1 will save her plenty of money.

How to compare money transfer companies when transferring money between Panama and Canada?

  • Exchange rates. Because Panama supports both its own currency, the PAB, and the USD, it can be difficult to compare exchange rates. You can either compare directly to the PAB, or with USD and then check to see what the exchange rate would be from USD to PAB.
  • Pickup methods. Pickup methods are generally cash pickups in main cities, at agent locations or other accessible physical addresses. Where supported, a transfer to bank accounts is also possible.
  • Fees. The fees range from around $4 to over $50 and can be influenced by variations like turnaround time, delivery method and recipient locations.
  • Bank to bank benefits. Many of the big Canadian banks will allow transfers from Canada to Panama. Check with your bank to see your options. If you have a HSBC or Citibank account, you will be able to transfer funds free of charge to other HSBC and Citibank clients.
  • Turnaround time. For cash transfers, the turnaround time can be minutes, and for bank transfers it can take up to five business days.
  • Transfer methods. Transfer methods include online, account, phone and agent locations. Some companies will also let you transfer money using their mobile app.
  • Transfer options. With some companies you can do once-off payments, regular payments, forward contracts and market orders.
  • Minimum and maximum transfer amounts. It will be important for someone like Shanade to not be limited in maximums when it comes to sending or receiving capital. Check with each company to see if they allow you to send large sums of money.
  • Customer service. If the transfers are to be done on a regular basis, customer service needs to be given special attention as a source of great comfort. Look for phone and email support lines as well as live chat options and in person branch locations.

How will you send money to Panama from Canada?

Money transfer services

You can use the following services to send currency to Panama: WorldRemit, MoneyGram and Western Union. It should be noted though, that most of these companies only allow you to send USD to Panama. No companies currently allow you to send PAB to Panama from Canada.


Citibank and HSBC both have a reach that extends to branches into Panama. Visit your nearest branch to see whether you can do a bank to bank transfer to a branch in Panama. Most banks in Canada also support the USD that can be used in Panama. You will need to visit your local bank to verify whether you can send USD to a bank account in Panama to be used there.


Panama is one of the supported markets for PayPal. An account can be created and linked with a local bank account in Panama. Check with your local bank to see whether you or your recipient can withdraw in USD and exchange it later or whether you can withdraw it directly in the PAB currency.

Can Shanade receive money in the form of capital gains from Panama in Canada?

  • Money transfer services – The same companies as listed above, including MoneyGram, WorldRemit and Western Union, can be used to send money to Canada from Panama by visiting an agent location or using their online websites.
  • Banks – You can find out if local Panamanian banks can send money overseas or go to a HSBC or Citibank to see whether they can send money out from Panama and not only receive it.
  • PayPal – Since Panama is a market supported by PayPal, you can confirm whether the local bank in Panama will support an upload for the PAB currency to USD on a PayPal account. You will then face an exchange rate to convert the money again from USD to CAD.

Emergency cash transfer options to Panama

MoneyGram, Western Union and WorldRemit are all companies that can send a cash transfer within minutes and make for great emergency cash options.

Please take note that these companies send the money in USD, and if PAB currency is required, choose a location below that is close to a local currency exchange office so you can immediately exchange your funds.

Cash pickup locations in Panama using MoneyGram and Western Union


Panama City

  • Centro Agropecuario De Chepo
    Epago – Xtra VacamonteEdificio Plaza XtraVia Iteramericana, Panama3171239Monday to Saturday, 8am to 8pm, Sunday, 12am to 12am
  • Casa De Cambios Del Caribe
    Calle 11 Santa Isabel Edif. 8060 Local 1, Panama4333680Monday to Saturday, 8am to 2:30pm, Sunday, 12am to 12am


  • Italtransfer – Colon
    Local 17, Amador, Colon9520010000Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, Saturday and Sunday, 8am to 6pm

Western Union

Panama City

  • Centro Agropecuario De Chepo
    Centro Comercial La Primavera, ChepoPanama, Panama 507+507-296-8795Monday to Saturday, 7:30am to 4pm, Sunday, 10am to 2pm
  • Credicorp Albrook Mall
    Centro Comercial Albrook MallPanama, Panama+507-3147408Monday to Friday, 10am to 5pm, Saturday, 10am to 1:30pm, Sunday, closed


  • MMD Calidonia
    Calle 21 De Enero Antiguea HieleriaCalidonia, Panama, Panama+507-2273411Monday to Sunday, 8am to 10pm

Read these tips before you pick up cash transfers in Panama

The Government of Canada advise Canadians to take normal safety precautions when travelling to Panama, but pay close attention to your personal safety. The Government advise to avoid all travel to Yaviza, located in the south of Panama close to the Darien Gap. Many people get kidnapped, robbed or go missing here.

When going to pick up a cash transfer, go with a fellow associate, friend or family member if possible. Keep your personal belongings safe and take care with bags that carry your tracking or reference numbers, receipts and ID.

What are the steps to send money to Panama?

What do you need to do to send a bank to bank transfer

  • Visit your bank branch to find out if you can send money to Panama. If not, visit a HSBC or Citibank to find out if you can open an account and send money to Panama from Canada, since both of these banks have branch locations in both nations
  • Open an account in Panama with a relevant bank or have the details of the bank account of your recipient
  • You will require branch details or SWIFT/BIC details in many cases
  • Correct amounts and currencies

How to send money using the money transfer services

  • You will either need the bank details of the recipient as stated above or the physical address (this can be a home or office address in a supported region or an agent location)
  • The basic details of the person receiving the money, including their full name, address and phone number
  • Your government issued ID
  • Correct amounts and currency (although most services will send USD in this instance)
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