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FAQ

Who can I speak to regarding any additional inquiries I may have?

Feel free to contact our offices. We are ready to receive your call 24/7. For additional information, call us directly on the following numbers:

(507) 232-7521 | (507) 6022-1103 | (507) 6677-4402 | (507) 6998-7727

Chat with us through Whatsapp

You can have immediate inquiries through our live chat (click here)

Our direct email with the fast response is sales@panamagemcharters.com

Please note that due to time differences, sometimes there may be a delay in answering your emails. However, the GEM Charters customer service team will do its best to respond to all messages as soon as possible.

Which is the best option for a boat for me?

The two main factors determining the type of vessel are the total number of passengers and your charter’s primary focus. For example, a fishing charter would require a fast cruising boat to reach fishing grounds with plenty of deck space with rod holders for the fishing action. Compared to a party charter where speed is not the main factor. In contrast, you get a lovely spacious deck and comfortable air-conditioned interiors to enjoy the party.

Keep in mind that some vessels combine different purposes. If you are unsure about your vessel selection, contact our sales department for a custom-made charter experience!

What boat license will I need for my trip (as a customer)?

Our vessels and crew are fully licensed; this is the only licensing required. There is no licensing required for clients, not even for fishing charters.

What time of year should I plan my charter?

Panama has been blessed with pristine conditions and changing attractions throughout the year. For example, from June to October, we get a visit from humpback whales, one of the longest mammal migrations in the world! There are top-of-the-line fishing conditions year-round, two different oceans, and one of the biggest artificial lakes right in the middle of the Panama Canal to explore and fish. Contact our sales department for the best recommendations based on your inquiry. (CONTACT US)

What do I need to bring?

Our main recommendations include sunglasses, a bathing suit, probably extra dry clothes, sunblock, a camera, and a towel. Also, since vessels depart from registered sites, you will require a valid ID (passports for foreigners and/or Panama official IDs like migration permits and cédula for Panamanians).

We provide a basic courtesy on every vessel: an ice pack, juices, Gatorade, bottled waters, and beer.

How do I Book/Reserve/Pay my charter?

Once you have chosen your favorite vessel, a 50% reservation deposit is required to fully reserve it. The payments can be by credit card, bank transfer to our commercial account, PayPal, online payment, or cash. The remaining balance can then be paid before departure at the departure site. After every payment to GEM Charters, you will receive a formal legal note as official proof of payment.

What additional costs besides the boat can I expect?

Gem should not require any further payments from the moment you depart until you come back. Furthermore, our packages do not include any personal things you acquire on the islands, like souvenirs, food, and drinks.

You should consider renting the extra equipment and services we offer at GEM Charters; please click to view the complete list.

How do I get to my boat?

Once you confirm the desired vessel, we will let you know the exact departure site with a map or Google Maps location for reference. At the departure site, dock masters are ready to receive you, guide you to the vessel, introduce you to the crew, and deal with the remaining balance. In addition, Panama GEM Charters offers a shuttle service that is not included in the price of the boat. We are happy to arrange that for you. 

Am I dealing with a certified charter company?

GEM Charters is registered with the Panama Commerce Authority and the Panama Maritime Authority. Our vessels are all registered, and our crews are certified and licensed. On every departure, Maritime Authorities will revise both vessel and crew licenses. On the other hand, after every payment to GEM Charters, you will receive a legal note as proof of payment.

How far in advance should I book my charter?

Panama is a major boating destination; we have fishing, whale and dolphin watching, calm coastal areas to cruise, and beautiful islands to explore. Therefore, clients tend to reserve vessels in advance. However, suppose you have a specific date, like a birthday or a particular day during your travels in Panama. In that case, we recommend reserving your date and vessel with a booking deposit to assure availability. We are always ready to head to sea; therefore, we accept last-minute reservations depending on availability.

What if I’m making a last-minute booking?

Our sales department is ready 24/7 to assist you with a last-minute booking. If the vessel you initially chose is already booked, we will make sure we have the most convenient alternative ready to welcome you aboard!

Are tips/gratuities included?

Tips are voluntary. We do not include them in our prices. However, our crews are professional seamen who love their work and will always try to comply with your wishes. In addition, they may be able to present various new possibilities along the way to make your charter a brilliant experience.

Gratuities will always make them happy, and rates are at your discretion. Nevertheless, it is customary to tip the Captain and crew. A decent tip might be reasonable if you have had a wonderful time and think it was due to the crew’s long hours and attention to detail.

Besides the yacht, what else is included?

Our basic package includes all operational costs, including fuel, licensing, and docking fees. As a courtesy, packed ice, juices, bottled water, and beer are available onboard.

All vessels have a certified and licensed crew. Bilingual staff can be provided upon request.

We offer other services  upon request, such as:

  • Land round-trip transportation
  • Catering service with hard liquor
  • Overnight accommodations on the islands
  • Restaurant reservations on the islands
  • Snorkeling fear
  • fishing gear
  • Whale-watching guide with a hydrophone
  • SCUBA diving
  • DJ
  • Bartender
  • Entertainment
  • Video/Photo memories package with professional camera and drone

Always check your personalized quotation to see what is included in your specific charter.

What if we bring our food and beverages?

That is fine with no problem; the boats have plenty of storage refrigerated space. There will be no extra charge for this, especially no corkage fee. Feel free to quote our complete catering packages hassle-free. Remember that the Captain is the authority at sea, and he can restrain alcohol consumption in a situation that requires his intervention for safety reasons. Please inform particular religious or personal factors like kosher to make necessary arrangements. Always count on our courtesy pack, full of ice, juices, Gatorade, bottled waters, and beer.

What are the cancelation policies?

Unavoidable factors, like dangerous weather conditions or personal reasons, might cause a cancellation. Once this situation occurs, we will try to contact you immediately to reschedule, make a substitution, or arrange a refund. Heading out to sea on board with us is a top-of-the-line adventure. We will always do whatever is within our reach to maximize your time and develop the best solution possible. Click here for our policies of cancelations and reserves. 

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