WHY DO I HAVE TO ARRIVE AND DEPART ON CERTAIN DATES? WOULD WE BE ABLE TO ARRIVE ON A DATE THAT IS NOT OUR REGULAR FLIGHT SCHEDULE AND WHAT WOULD THAT ENTAILE?
Due to the remoteness of the area and limited charter flights into Piñas Bay we can only get planes on certain days. If you choose to do other dates you can charter a plane in or out or both. Please call the Orlando Reservations office to find out what the rates would be. It all depends on how many in your party on what plane it is.
WHAT ARE THE TYPE OF THE CHARTER PLANES?
We are currently using Caravans, Kodiaks or Seneca’s, depending on the number of people and amount of cargo going to the Lodge.
WHAT TIME DOES THE PLANE DEPART TO THE LODGE?
Flight schedules out of the lodge are generally between 8:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. It is depending on plane availability.
WHAT TIME WILL I FLY OUT OF THE LODGE IN ORDER TO FLY HOME THE SAME DAY?
We recommend that you overnight in Panama City and fly home the next day as there may be a delay in flights out of the lodge due to weather, etc. If you choose to take a chance and fly home the same day, you need to schedule your flight at 5:00pm or later.
WHAT IS OUR LUGGAGE WEIGHT LIMIT?
There is a limit of 30lb for your luggage (SOFT SIDED) and A 15 lb LIMIT for carry-on bags. Laundry Service is available at the Lodge on Tuesdays and Thursdays for a nominal fee. If you need laundry done on any other day, please inform the office so we can accommodate your needs.
WHAT HOTELS DO YOU PROVIDE TRANSPORTATION TO, DO YOU MAKE THE HOTEL RESERVATIONS OR CAN WE MAKE OUR OWN?
Sheraton Panama Hotel and Convention Center, Bristol Hotel, Trump Ocean Club International Hotel and Tower, Marriott Hotel, Holiday Inn Canal, Tryp-Albrook Mall, Gamboa Hotel, and Aloft Hotel.
We make the reservations for you if you would like. The hotel in Panama City is not included. On our forms we ask you what hotel you would like to stay, dates, type of room(s), etc. and ask that you provide us a credit card so that we will be able to hold your reservations. Once you arrive at the Hotel and check in you will be required to provide your credit card.
If you choose another Hotel, there may be an extra fee for transportation incurred.
If you decide to make your own hotel reservation we will need your confirmations and what hotel in order to be able to transfer you to your hotel and pick you up.
DO I NEED A VISA OR PASSPORT?
Citizens of most countries including the USA, Canada and the European Union don’t need a visa. They only require a valid passport. For all other countries consult your embassy or a Panamanian consulate about visa requirements. Of note: the law requires anyone entering Panama to have at least 3 months before your passport expires. We suggest making sure your passport is valid 6 months after your trip date. You are also required to have a minimum of $500.00. People are rarely asked for this, but have it just in case. Panamanian law also requires you carry some kind of ID when you are out and about. To avoid losing your passport, just carry a photocopy of the photo page of your passport and also the page where your entry date is stamped. If your children are traveling with one parent only, Panama requires a notarized letter of permission from the other parent.
WHY DO WE NEED TO PROVIDE PASSPORTS, WEIGHTS AND BIRTHDATES?
Weights and balances are utilized for the charter flights in and out of the lodge. Bags are weighed and factored in as well. When packing, please factor in the availability of our laundry service and also our onsite boutique to limit over packing. Passports need to be in your hand carry bags for easy accessibility.
The Passport name, passport #’s and birthdates are important in order for us to provide this information to the Royal Saloon Meet and greet Service and for our records. We provide Passport #s, Birthdates and your Passport name to the Royal Saloon meet and Greet services so that they may have the information ahead and clear you through customs.
WHY DO WE RECOMMEND INSURANCE FOR YOUR TRIP?
Due to global weather changes and the economy, there are times when international flights have been cancelled as a result of inclement weather causing clients to miss their connections or airlines simply cancelling a flight for not having sold enough seats. In addition, Panama has experienced some unusual weather and there have been times where a few domestic flights have been delayed causing clients to spend an additional night in a hotel in Panama City.
Piñas Bay Resorts recommends clients purchase trip insurance to protect your investment and to cover unexpected weather or other delays, cancellations or trip interruptions due to medical issues of the client and/or their family. There are many companies that offer travel insurance, and most of them require the policy to be purchased at the time of making the initial trip deposit. Clients that have already paid their deposit or final payment can still purchase trip insurance.
WHAT IS INCLUDED WITH THE PACKAGES?
Your rate includes your room/s, meals, wine during dinner service, appetizers, and soft drinks. For fishing guests, this charge also includes the boat with captain and mate and fishing tackle.
Extra charges include gratuities, purchases at the boutique, laundry, bar tabs, beer consumed on your boat, massage therapist, special air charters, any special excursions and taxidermy orders.
WHAT IS OUR CANCELLATION POLICY PER PERSON?
In order to receive a refund, cancellations must be received, in writing, at least one hundred twenty one (121) days prior to your trip start date, less a $1,000 per person cancellation fee ($500 may be applied towards a trip within one year of your cancellation). If you cancel your trip, for whatever reason, 0-120 days prior to your arrival at the Lodge, all payments will be nonrefundable.
HOW MUCH GRATUITY FOR CAPTAIN/MATE AND STAFF?
These are at your discretion and based on quality of service.
Typically each guest rewards
the restaurant staff (8 to 12 staff) $150.00 per guest in total. This amount can be added to your bill at the lodge or handled individually.
Your Captain and Mate should be tipped at the end of your last day of fishing in cash. The average tip per day is $100 to $150 per boat which can be given to the Captain and he will split 60/40. ($600 to $900 per 6 day fishing week).
The Director of Fishing, Dock Master and Assistants can be handled in person or put on your bill.
A tip recommendation form will be placed in your room two nights before departure for your convenience.