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Does anyone have RECENT costs for canal passage. I have gotten a bunch of guesses but nothing definitive. There are several sites on the internet but they are several years old. Any "recent" info would be appreciated.
Thanx
 

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Administrator
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I believe the information you want is here:

Maritime Services - PanCanal.com

Looks like each bullet is a different fee. For example Transit Reservation System lists $2500 for vessels uip to 300 feet.

Line handling is another bullet and fee (if needed), etc.
 

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Bombay Explorer 44
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Up to 50 ft $800

50 to 80 ft $1300

Security fee $130

There is a bunch of small fees say $400 in total.

You need 4 line handlers 4 x 200ft dock lines and bagged car tires as fenders.

A local person working as a line handler will cost you about $125. Yotties often help each other out and doing a transit as a handler will prepare you as a skipper for your own transit.

Should you use a local agent, Their fee will be $400 approx. I would say yes, they will organize the tires, lines and handlers if required. You will still have to pay for these items but don't have to russle them up yourself. No security deposit required.

If you don't use an agent you pay a security deposit of $800 or more which gets credited to your ac about 8 wks after the transit assuming there are no issues.
 

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since I did it a long time ago this isnt up to date..having said that the process is the same and there has been only a slight increase in prices

we did not hire line handlers, and cruisers arent yachties per se! a samich and beer gets you a line handler for the day you need 4...

you rent or borrow tires for the hulls...we scrounded them.


you pay the cab ride home for them back to their boats

we did it this way 4 times for us and friends on different boats back in 2002.

we DID NOT USE AN AGENT either however I spoke spanish..having said that spanish is not needed as everything is done in english really.

all said and done for boats under 50 you are looking at 1.5-2k or 2.5k ish with an agent. for most 50ft and under boats.

all the info can be found at the panama canal site as mentioned and noonsite is great for up to date info however experiences may vary regarding transits...

also I beleive york sailor just went through some months ago so ask him on here...I think though he went all out with an agent and stuff..his boat is also above 50ft I think. I remember asking him since he was the most recent to tranist.

anywhoo

good luck
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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We did not use an agent and don't speak Spanish. All the people working the canal speak decent English. Between three boats we had enough long lines and substantial fenders. You want to go lock through in the middle of the lock and you will be rafted with other sailboats. Going from the Caribbean you start in the afternoon and spend the night tied to a giant mooring in Gatun Lake not far from first set of locks. So you will have line handlers for guests for the night. Find some friends to take.

Our cost was $800 for lockage (plus the security fee which you get back) + $100 for one of the advisors with a pick up truck to take the fenders and lines back to the start + $15 for a local Sim card and air time (we had an open phone). When we went back to help the people who helped us we had a taxi to the bus station in Panama City ($8) + a bus to Colon ($3) + a taxi to where we were meeting our rides ($1).

You can go to the marina and do all the preps from there. We anchored off the boat club (didn't really see any boats). They charge $5 a day to use their dinghy dock. We came to Colon on day 1, started the paperwork on day two, were measured on day three (you have to anchor in the small craft anchorage which apparently is not very safe at night. We paid the fee on day 4. You have to pay cash. I did not like the idea of telling the cab driver to take me to the bank where you pay, since that would be advertising that I had $1500 in cash in my pocket, so I asked him to take me to the Port Capitan's office which is across the street from the bank.

The we left Colon for Christmas in a nicer place and came back for our canal passage on january 3rd as I remember. It is not as expensive, complicated, or physically difficult as a lot of people say.
 
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Considering the alternatives, seems like a bargain to me. ;)
that goes without saying..however some have something against panama running the PANAMA canal and others think its easy to use a lock(s) for a mid size cruiser when what they are designed to do is pass freighters and commercial vessel

we the cruisers are the nuissance and not the money makers

ive heard it all with regards to the canal...I lived in pmbc the extinct club in miraflores for over a year and had friends on both sides of the "canal" and there is so much hate and ridiculusness and hubris on what the panama canal should be it just makes me sad

any pleasure craft that uses such a magnificent peice of engineering in order to go from one ocean to another for roughly 1500 or so and thinks thats expensive is simply not with it...

people spend all sorts of money on crap yet to not go around the horn 1500-2500 is called expensive

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanywhoo:D
 

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Schooner Captain
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Sounds like it would be interesting to just hang out on the gulf side and assist cruisers traversing in both directions. that way you could get the experience w/out the cost.
I understand the attraction of the canal, but I would be more interested in the "Slocum " route.
what seems expensive is/are all the entry fees for all the countries you're clearing in and out of. The boat and crew costs pretty much the same no matter where it's floating.
Thats a great idea, I bet if you hung out there, and charged cruisers $60-80 per person you could make a nice little living as a line handler, albeit an illegal one.
 

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For line handlers I emailed the backpacker hostels in Panama City a printable notice for their notice board. The notice was pretty simple: FREE 2 Day Panama Canal Transit Adventure. Come do it on a real boat and we will feed you too!! Sleep overnight in the Canal! Share cabin, share bathroom, all FREE!!

Well, stuff me if we didn't have a few volunteer backpackers! We supplied the whole convoy!
They had a great time. Nikon city. They didnt even need to touch the lines but they were good so we even let them drive the boat.
 

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people spend all sorts of money on crap yet to not go around the horn 1500-2500 is called expensive

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanywhoo:D
Heh. Was talking to a fellow that wanted to save a little times over hassling through the locks. He paid something like $5000 to have his boat trucked from Corpus Christi to San Diego. He shrugged it off say "But it was back in the water in six days." I suppose that's one way to look at it. And who knows, he might have saved that much or more buying it on the Gulf in the first place. Money is the universal problem fixer... :)
 

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Well I am not saying it is not worth it, just most of what I have read (cruising books) is really old so it has gone up a lot since the 70's that is all. I agree it is a bargain, for those who can afford it. Heck that is the cost of a good foul weather suit. But it kind of keeps the real budget cruisers out, heck that is three months budget for the $500 a month club set!

Yes, I am sure the cruising boats are more like mosquitoes to the guys running the locks as far as how much they make from them. Of course I get mad every time I have to pay $14 to get across the George Washington Bridge!
 

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Jnoiur Mebemr
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Well I am not saying it is not worth it, just most of what I have read (cruising books) is really old so it has gone up a lot since the 70's that is all. I agree it is a bargain, for those who can afford it. Heck that is the cost of a good foul weather suit. But it kind of keeps the real budget cruisers out, heck that is three months budget for the $500 a month club set!
Yes but you have to figure that $1 in 1970 had the same buying power as $6.12 does today. If your reading about cruisers spending $500 back in the 70s that would take over $3k nowadays. Inflation sucks..
 

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Yes but you have to figure that $1 in 1970 had the same buying power as $6.12 does today. If your reading about cruisers spending $500 back in the 70s that would take over $3k nowadays. Inflation sucks..
Yes but ignoring it makes the cruise on 500 a month a lot easier to take!
 

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well by that inflation token that means the transit costs havent inflated as much RIGHT? as the rest of the world

yet another way to thank that its such a bargain
 

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Bristol 45.5 - AiniA
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I would go thru Patagonia, by the time you get to Columbia you will be a real seadog.
Not sure what Colombia (it has an 'o') has to do with Patagonia.
 
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