Car Rental in Panama

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500+ Trusted Suppliers:

Cheapest Car Rental Rates

Downtown Car Rental
Economy
Kia Picanto or similar
Kia Picanto
  • 5
  • 1
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Thrifty
$16.95 per day
Downtown Car Rental
Compact
Hyundai Accent or similar
Hyundai Accent
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Hertz
$18.70 per day
Downtown Car Rental
Intermediate
Nissan Versa or similar
Nissan Versa
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Dollar
$21.80 per day
Tocumen International Airport Car Rental
Mini
Kia Picanto or similar
Kia Picanto
  • 5
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
SIXT
$25.52 per day

Most Popular Car Rental Deals

Downtown Car Rental
Standard
Hyundai Accent or similar
Hyundai Accent
  • 5
  • 3
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Europcar
$32.00 / per day
Rio Hato Ocean Mall Car Rental
Full-size
Toyota Corolla or similar
Toyota Corolla
  • 5
  • 4
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Alamo
$35.23 / per day
Tocumen International Airport Car Rental
Premium
Hyundai Elantra or similar
Hyundai Elantra
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Routes Car Rental
$59.95 / per day
Downtown Car Rental
Luxury
Kia Optima or similar
Kia Optima
  • 5
  • 2
  • 4
  • A/C
  • Auto.
Thrifty
$21.13 / per day
The above prices are only approximate and were last updated at 19:31 on 2023-03-19. Prices may vary based on the booking dates, length of rental, and car class.
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Travel Information

Language
Spanish,
English
Currency
PAB
Drive on
Right-hand side
Country code
507
Average car rental price
$28.91 / per day
Average car rental length
9 days
Speed limit within town
25 - 30 km/h
16 - 19 mph
Speed limit out of town
100 km/h
62 mph
Acceptable limit of BAC
0.08%
Rating
9.7
Average gasoline price
$1.06 / 1 liter
Highest gasoline price
$1.43 / 1 liter
Lowest gasoline price
$0.88 / 1 liter

Why rent a car in Panama?

Panama, conecting Central and Sotuh America between Costa Rica and Colombia, is a great destination, particlarly if you have a car to get around. The country has coastline on both the Carribean Sea and the Pacific Ocean that offers fun and relaxation and mountains and jubgles in its interior. For more information on traveling in Panama and beyond, check out As We Saw It.

 

Before you set off on a trip around the gorgouse country, here are some important things you need to know about driving in Panama:

  • The speed limit in residential areas is 30 km/h (18 mph) and on highways, it can range from 80 km/h (50 mph) to 120 km/h (75 mph). Pay attention on the highways, because the speed limit can change quickly.

  • Panama has four main expressways, and all of them are toll roads. To use these toll roads, you will need to have a prepaid Panapass, so make sure to have a toll pass with you if you plan on driving on these roads. Cash is not accepted.

  • Traffic can be congested in some areas, especially during rush hour. It is best to avoid driving during these times if possible.

  • Panama has a zero-tolerance policy for drunk driving. If you are caught driving under the influence, you will face serious consequences.

  • Parking can be a challenge in some areas, especially in Panama City. Look for designated parking spots or parking garages to avoid getting towed or fined.

  • Some streets in Panama City are designated as "no parking" zones during certain times of the day. Make sure to check the signs before parking your vehicle.

  • In some areas, it is common for people to double park, but this is not recommended as it can block traffic and you may receive a fine.

  • Find more details about what you need to know about driving in Panama here.

 

Top cities and places to visit

Panama is a beautiful country with many different things to see and do, such as tropical rainforests, beautiful beaches, historic landmarks, and busy cities. Here are some of the top places to visit in Panama:

  • Panama City. The vibrant capital city offers both modern skyscrapers and historic landmarks like Panama Viejo. Watch ships pass through the nearby Panama Canal, stroll through Casco Viejo, or drive to the Amador Causeway for fantastic views of the city skyline.
  • Panama Canal. The Panama Canal is a feat of engineering that connects the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. It is one of the most famous places in Panama.
  • Soberania National Park. A vast tropical rainforest located just outside of Panama City, Soberania National Park is a great place to go birdwatching, hiking, and wildlife spotting.
  • Fort San Lorenzo. Overlooking the Caribbean, this historic fortress was a key defense post during colonial times. Explore the ruins, learn about the history of the fort, and take in the beautiful views. There’s also a nearby beach.
  • El Valle de Anton. El Valle de Anton is a lovely mountain town that is two hours west of Panama City and encircled by lush forests and waterfalls. Take a dip in the natural hot springs or hike to the top of the nearby Cerro Gaital for panoramic views.
  • Boquete. Located in Panama’s western highlands, Boquete is a popular expat community and a favorite destination for outdoor enthusiasts. Go hiking in the lush cloud forests, visit the coffee plantations, or soak in the hot springs.
  • Bocas del Toro. This group of islands off Panama’s Caribbean coast offers pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a laid-back vibe. Keep in mind that you can only drive as far as Almirante, and then you'll need to take a boat to the islands. Go snorkeling, surfing, or simply relax on the beach.

Crossing Borders

It is impossible to drive to Colombia from Panama, as there are no roads through the Darien Gap’s dense jungle. Though you could drive to Costa Rica, no rental company allows their vehicles to be taken there from Panama. 

Toll roads

Panama has four main expressways, and all of them are toll roads. To use these toll roads, you will need to have a prepaid Panapass, so make sure to have a toll pass with you if you plan on driving on these roads. Cash is not accepted.

Rental companies may offer you this toll pass, though expect to be charged an additional fee on top of the costs of the tolls.

Car Rental Prices

  • Large cars - from $36 per day
  • Medium cars - from $29 per day
  • Vans - from $75 per day
  • Small cars - from $25 per day
  • SUVs - from $58 per day
This information was written, fact-checked, and/or translated by our content creators. Learn more about our Editorial Policy.
Fact checked by:
Linda from As We Saw It
This article was reviewed and updated by Linda, a seasoned traveler. She is the founder of As We Saw It, a travel blog full of itineraries, travel tips, and cultural experiences to enjoy all over the world. With over 50 countries under her belt, Linda has lived in Panama and has first-hand experience driving around the country.

Top 3 Most Popular Cities in Panama

  1. Car Rental in Panama City from $23.54 per day
  2. Car Rental in David from $19.86 per day
  3. Car Rental in Colon from $23.66 per day

Map of Car Rental Locations

Which is the cheapest month to rent a car in Panama?

The cost of renting a car in Panama depends on the time of year. This graph compares price changes from month to month in order to help you find the best offer.
Average Rental Price in Panama
$30.27
January
$30.55
February
$27.56
March
$32.28
April
$27.36
May
$29.40
June
$31.75
July
$35.82
August
$38.69
September
$36.28
October
$37.81
November
$36.99
December
The cheapest month of the year to rent a car in Panama is May — prices start from $27.36 for an Economy class vehicle. This is 17% cheaper than the yearly average and 29% cheaper than renting a car in the month of September (when prices start at $38.69 for a Compact class). This information can help you identify the low season. But these are only average numbers. The exact price for your trip will depend on the length of your rental and how far in advance you book. Just enter your dates in the form at the top of the page to see exact prices.

What’s the average rental length in Panama?

The average length differs from month to month. The longest rental periods are in January — an average of 11 days. The shortest are in September — an average of 6 days.
Average Rental Length in Panama
11
January
9
February
9
March
9
April
8
May
9
June
9
July
7
August
6
September
8
October
10
November
11
December

What's the most popular time of year to rent a car in Panama?

DiscoverCars.com users search for cars in a lot of locations daily. We gathered this information in order to analyze car rental popularity in Panama. The most popular month is February, while the least popular is November.
Popularity of Car Rental in Panama by Monthly Searches
127%
January
165%
February
140%
March
139%
April
69%
May
64%
June
100%
July
76%
August
77%
September
72%
October
51%
November
119%
December

Car Rental Information

Car rental locations 21
Airport locations 4
Popular suppliers Thrifty, Dollar, Budget, SIXT, Flexways
Popular car categories SUVs, Small cars, Medium cars, Large cars
Lowest price $17 per day
Cheapest supplier Thrifty

Most Popular Car Models of Rental Suppliers

Rental Supplier Model Doors Luggage Type
Dollar Kia Rio 4 2 Medium cars
Dollar Nissan Juke 5 2 SUVs
Dollar Hyundai Creta 5 2 SUVs
Dollar Hyundai i10 5 1 Small cars
Flexways Suzuki XL7 5 2 SUVs
Budget Toyota Fortuner 4 2 SUVs
Budget Kia Picanto 4 2 Small cars
Budget Kia Rio 4 2 Medium cars
Avis Kia Picanto 4 2 Small cars
Dollar Hyundai Tucson 5 3 SUVs

Our Customers' Reviews

Because we want to make sure each review listed here is left by a real customer, we don’t have an option to post a review here. Instead, we ask each and every customer to leave a review after they return their rental car. This way, you know that all reviews are authentic, verified, and trustworthy.

Canada
Kia Rio
January 12, 2023
Very serene and laid back and enjoyable

Car Rental Statistics

Highest rated company
Dollar
8.95 / 10
Lowest rated company
SIXT
7.72 / 10
Total number of reviews
7
Total rental companies
13
Average daily price
$28.91
Lowest daily price
$12.76
Total cars available
604

Top 13 Suppliers in Panama in 2023

Dollar
Dollar
Excellent 8.9 / 80 reviews
15 locations
$18 - $98
Hertz
Hertz
Excellent 8.6 / 4 reviews
11 locations
$18 - $143
Avis
Avis
Excellent 8.5 / 6 reviews
3 locations
$24 - $36
National
National
Excellent 8.5
3 locations
Flexways
Flexways
Excellent 8.4 / 5 reviews
3 locations
$33 - $57
Firefly
Firefly
Excellent 8.4 / 2 reviews
2 locations
Alamo
Alamo
Excellent 8.4 / 4 reviews
6 locations
$27 - $175
Thrifty
Thrifty
Excellent 8.3 / 61 reviews
11 locations
$17 - $95
NUCarrentals
NUCarrentals
Excellent 8.3
1 location
Routes Car Rental
Routes Car Rental
Excellent 8.2 / 3 reviews
1 location
$35 - $80
Budget
Budget
Excellent 8.1 / 14 reviews
3 locations
$74 - $100
Europcar
Europcar
Excellent 8 / 15 reviews
2 locations
$25 - $299
SIXT
SIXT
Very good 7.7 / 24 reviews
5 locations
$26 - $178
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