Will I see a lot of poverty?
Unfortunately, there is a wide gap between the rich and poor in Panama. The disparity between the two groups is largely based around wealth, ethnicity, and geography. 29 percent of the Panamanian population lives below the poverty line, which is defined as less than $1.25 a day. Minority and indigenous groups tend to be poorer and often live in rural areas that receive less support from the central government. Still, many Panamanians do live in relative comfort. The GDP per capita (PPP, or relative purchasing power parity) was $15,300 in 2012, and the unemployment rate was just 4.4 percent. Travelers to Panama may see some poverty in Panama City and in more rural areas, including parts of Bocas del Toro and other places along the Caribbean coast.