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Old 30-12-2011, 08:42   #1
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Panama Canal update

I have just transited through the canal and wanted to share my experience with the community. We did all steps of the preparations by ourselves and it appeared easy enough.
We were going from Pacific (La Playita anchorage) to Atlantic (Shelter Bay Marina) and I was told that doing the same in Colon might be a bit more intimidating and/or difficult.
Here are the steps needed to complete the process:
1. check in (get cruising permit in Capitania de Puerto, get visas, aduana etc.. - not the Canal business)
2. visit the Canal office right across the road from Banco Nacional at Balboa (fill the form with transit request)
3. Schedule a vessel inspection (and pass it)
4. deposit $1500 (cash!) at Citi Bank near Niko Cafe in Balboa (part of it called 'buffer' will be returned to you upon completion of transit. As far as I understand I will receive well over $800.00 back; see form below)
5. call the scheduler to schedule transit.

Scheduling the vessel inspection and transit time/date is done by phone. We went to the canal office to fill the initial form and couple of days later to the bank to make a deposit (cash). I don't think I would benefit from any assistance except taxi driver.

We bought tires (4 tires $2.00 each) and rented lines ($25.00 per line x 4) at Balboa Yacht Club.

We had friends passing the canal on their boat with 8 crew and we were able to "borrow" linehandlers (skipper + 4 linehandlers needed)

Here is the form from Canal de Panama website which pretty much explains everything:
http://www.pancanal.com/common/marit...s/4352-eng.pdf

Overall simple process. There is no language problem since English is the official Canal language. Everything went well with no hiccups.
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Old 30-12-2011, 13:07   #2
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Re: Panama Canal update

Outstanding write up. Thanks for sharing that pdf. I'm sure someone out there will benefit from it's availability.
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:18   #3
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Re: Panama Canal update

Lots of great info! Very good. Thank you for your insite!!!!
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:22   #4
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Re: Panama Canal update

Going the other way works exactly the same of course. Immigration and Port Captain are available at Shelter Bay Marina. For the Canal Authority, you need to visit their offices in Colon, which is very close to the bank. A "marina taxi" will bring you everywhere you need to be.

cheers,
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:27   #5
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Re: Panama Canal update

Thank you.
The link to the Canal Authority instructions for small vessels pretty much describes everything and it comes from the source.
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Old 05-01-2012, 11:29   #6
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Re: Panama Canal update

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Going the other way works exactly the same of course. Immigration and Port Captain are available at Shelter Bay Marina. For the Canal Authority, you need to visit their offices in Colon, which is very close to the bank. A "marina taxi" will bring you everywhere you need to be.

cheers,
Nick.
Exactly - just slightly longer distances.
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:13   #7
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Re: Panama Canal update

good to know thanks!
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:19   #8
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pirate Re: Panama Canal update

Nice one... might need this.. Thanks
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