Panamanians and foreigners with lawful residency in Panama, who are over 18 years old, can obtain a driver’s license, provided they meet the requirements established in the Traffic Regulations of the Republic of Panama.

Foreigners who enter Panama as tourists cannot obtain a driver’s license or permit. They can only drive vehicles with a valid license from their country of origin for a period of 90 days, without the possibility of extension.

Temporary resident aliens and permanent resident aliens can only drive with a permit from the Transit and Land Transportation Authority of Panama, upon presentation of their driver’s license and certification from the diplomatic representation or competent authority to verify the authenticity of the document. Those who request this right due to international agreements or conventions for humanitarian reasons and do not have their license must comply with all the requirements established in this regulation, after validation of the documentation by the authorized office or institution. The issuance of licenses to diplomats is regulated by Cabinet Decree Number 280 of August 13, 1970.

The types of driver’s licenses issued in Panama are:

  • Type A: Bicycle
  • Type B: Motorcycle
  • Type C: Automobiles and pickup trucks
  • Type D: Light trucks up to 8 tons and buses up to 16 passengers
  • Type E: Public passenger transport vehicle
    • E1: Selective transport
    • E2: Buses up to 16 passengers
    • E3: Buses over 16 passengers
  • Type F: Single-unit trucks over 8 tons and buses over 16 passengers
  • Type G: Combined trucks
  • Type H: Vehicles transporting hazardous materials
  • Type I: Heavy equipment

If you need help obtaining a driver’s license in Panama or translating a document from a foreign language into Spanish for your driver’s license application in Panama, please contact us at +507 6290-3468 or email us at