A successful meeting between ISA President, Fernando Aguerre and Panamanian Minister of Tourism, Mr. Salomón Shamah was held during the Billabong ISA World Surfing Games in Costa Rica. Shamah showed a great deal of interest in letting the surfing community know that Panama is a “Surfing friendly” country. The campaign has already begun with an initiative by Panama´s main airline, COPA Airlines, by not charging extra fees for surfboards on most of their flights.
The promotion “Bring your Surfboard for Free to Panama,” runs between September 15 – November 15, 2009. It will resume on March 1, 2010 and run through May 30, 2010.
One board bag with a maximum of two boards inside is allowed per person on flights coming from the United States of America (Los Angeles, Orlando, Miami, Washington, and New York), Brazil (Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Belo Horizonte, and Manaus) and Costa Rica (San José).
The only thing you have to do is call the COPA Airlines call center and let them know that you’re going to travel with surfboards.
According to ISA President, Fernando Aguerre, “”I congratulate Mr. Shamas for his support of surfing. Panama is certainly one of the greatest surfing destinations in the world. Add tropical weather, warm water, and the welcoming nature of the Panamanian people and you have a top place in the short list of destinations for any traveling surfer. Gracias Panama!”
Wave-rich Panama, home of the world-famous breaks Santa Catalina and Bocas del Toro, is providing the unique chance of going on an exotic surf trip without the added cost of surfboard baggage fees.