Weights and Measures
Panama uses the metric system, though auto fuel is sold by the gallon, and pounds, inches, and feet are still sometimes used interchangeably with their metric equivalents.
Panama’s voltage is almost universally the same as it is in the United States: 110 volts. Sockets are two-pronged, and U.S. appliances don’t need an adapter. There are still a few remote places that use 220 volts, however, so if there’s any doubt, ask before plugging in. Note that short blackouts and power surges are common in Panama. Those traveling with sensitive equipment, such as a laptop computer, may want to bring a surge suppresser.
Panama is on eastern standard time. There is no daylight savings time in Panama, so the time difference with U.S. destinations changes by an hour during daylight savings time in the United States. Put another way, Panama time is five hours behind Greenwich Mean Time. Panama is always one hour ahead of Costa Rica, something to remember when crossing the border.
© William Friar from Moon Panama, 3rd Edition