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Posted by Maria Arias on May 3, 2016
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According to luxury travel boutique Virtuoso, Panama has the most significant growth in bookings among its wealthy clients for the first quarter of the year. After Panama, Thailand and Switzerland round out the top three spots for highest growth in bookings. According to Virtuoso, reservations to Panama increased 107 percent compared to the same period last year, beating out destinations such as, South Africa, Colombia and Spain.

Panama has been in the shadow of other destinations such as Costa Rica, but this trend is changing thanks to the growing popularity of destinations such as Bocas del Toro and San Blas. Travel & Leisure magazine ranked Bocas del Toro as a top destination this year due to its natural beauty. In addition, Panama was named its top destination to retire.

The data shows that tourists are already spending considerably more money in Panama than Costa Rica. According to published reports travelers injected more than $4.1 billion into Panama in 2015 compared to $2.6 billion spent in Costa Rica.

Here are the top 5 countries that have seen the most significant growth in year-on-year bookings for between January and March, 2016, by the luxury travel company Virtuoso:

1. Panama (+107 per cent)
2. Thailand (+92 per cent)
3. Switzerland (+56 per cent)
4. South Africa (+50 per cent)
5. Kenya (+47 per cent)