With over fourteen million passengers served per year, Panama City Tocumen International Airport (PTY) is by far the busiest airport in Central America. The airport serves as the main gateway into Panama, a picturesque country with rolling hills and mountains, calming waterways, and lush forests. With dozens of airlines and destinations available, PTY is also a great place to stop for a layover.
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Best Time to Book a Flight to Panama City
The weather in Panama City is fairly consistent throughout the year, with daytime temperatures ranging from warm to hot. The skies are often quite cloudy throughout the year. There is also a distinct wet season and dry season in the city. The rainy season spans from May to December, meaning that the dry months, from January to April, are the most popular months for tourists to visit. This works out very well for Canadians looking to escape the snow and cold in the winter months.
Airlines that Fly to Panama City Tocumen International Airport
Panama City Toucumen International Airport is served by over twenty airlines flying worldwide. Copa Airlines is the airline offering the most flight destinations. Copa flies to and from Toronto and Montreal, as well as to and from U.S. cities like New York, Boston, and San Francisco. They also fly to multiple South American, Central American, and European cities.
One other airline, Air Canada Rouge, flies direct from Canada to Panama City. Currently, the only destination offered is Toronto Pearson (YYZ), Canada's largest and busiest airport. If you can't fly out of YYZ, you can fly American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, or United Airlines to Panama City with one stop in a major U.S. city.
Arriving at Panama City Tocumen International Airport
Panama City Airport consists of one bright and modern passenger terminal. English-speaking tourists will find the airport easy to navigate as all signage is printed in both Spanish and English. Upon arrival, you will head down the escalator towards immigration and baggage claim. Directly outside of the terminal, you'll find a taxi rank with waiting taxis. In low traffic, the trip to Panama City will take only about 20 minutes and cost about $30 CAD. In rush hour traffic, the trip can take up to an hour. Panama City car rental services can be found near the taxi rank as well. Uber drivers are also permitted to pick up at the airport. You'll meet your driver in the parking area across the street from the terminal.
There is no bus stop directly at the airport, but there is a stop about five minutes away. The pedestrian walkway to the bus stop is well-marked. A ride into the airport will cost about $2 CAD. Unfortunately, the bus only accepts fare cards, which are only on sale within the city. If you ask nicely, a local will usually be willing to trade a fare for cash.
Panama City Tocumen International Airport Facilities
With dozens of food and shopping options, you'll never be bored at Panama City Airport. The airport offers everything from coffee shops and fast food to bars and full-service restaurants. Throughout the airport, you'll also find everything from liquor and cigars to clothing, electronics, and perfume available to purchase. Other amenities available include banks and ATMs, a V.I.P. lounge, and a free urgent care clinic. Wireless internet is also available for free for up to two hours.
What to See and Do in Panama City
The most popular tourist attraction when visiting Panama City is definitely the Panama Canal, a man-made waterway which spans from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. No matter where you visit along the 77 km stretch, the view will be incredible. Most tourists choose to focus their visit around the Miraflores locks, where there is an educational visitors center as well as a movie theatre, a museum, and a restaurant.