I have a 5 year validity US visitor's visa, with three years left, and want to visit Panama and Costa Rica for two weeks as a tourist. My travel agent says I can simply use my USA visa to enter those two countries.

Can I enter Panama and Costa Rica without another visa?


2 Answers 2


Can I enter panama and Costa Rica without a visa?


Yes you can enter Panama if you have a valid passport for at least 3 months and visas from the following countries regardless of your nationality:

Source:Consulate General Of Panama London

“Those who hold a valid passport for at least 3 months and a valid visa from ONE of the following countries: USA, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia or any of the member countries of the European Union, which has been used at least one time to enter those countries, may enter the Republic of Panama by purchasing a Tourist Card, regardless of their nationality.”

You will just need to buy a tourist card upon arrival. The tourist card is purchased upon arrival at the Panamanian airport and it has a cost of thirty dollars and zero cents (USD $30.00).

The tourist card is valid for 30 days, renewable at the Office of Migration for an extra period of 60 days.

Costa Rica

You can also enter Costa Rica on your 5 years valid USA visa.

Source: Embassy Of Costa Rica Washington

"Citizens of other nationalities do not need a tourist visa to enter Costa Rica if they have a tourist visa, a visa for crew or a business visa (multiple entry) from United States of America, Canada, Japan, Schengen Visa and/ or any country of the European Union . Note: Such visa must be stamped in the passport and be valid for at least 1 day (The length of stay may not be greater than the validity of the visa and may not exceed 30 days) or 6 months (Japan) from the day you enter Costa Rica."

Therefore you can simply enter Panama and Costa Rica on a valid USA visa provided you may stay in Panama for 30 days and can be extended for extra period of 60 days. Whereas in Costa Rica the length of stay is limited to 30 days only.


As crazy as it might sound given that these countries are clearly not the USA, it's actually true!

Many countries will waive the requirement to have a visa if you have a visa from another specific country - and both Panama and Costa Rica fall into this category.

Panama will grant entry to people from Pakistan with a valid multi-entry visa for the following countries : Andorra, Australia, Canada, Iceland, Monaco, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland, USA or a EU Member State The visa must have been issued for a period of at least one year, and must have been used. ie, in your case you must have entered the US at least once using your visa for it to be valid for entry into Panama.

Costa Rica will grant entry to people from Pakistan with a valid multi-entry visa for the US. If the visa is a type B1, B2 or D then it must be valid for the period you intend to stay in Costa Rica. For all other types of US visa it must be valid for at least 6 months from the date you enter Costa Rica.

  • +1 particularly for the added emphasis that the visa must have been used, at least once, to enter the US. It might be worth putting that in bold.
    – Giorgio
    Commented Dec 6, 2016 at 18:33

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