I recently went on a Chiva. It was something I tried out of curiosity. A friend had invited me and it was a new experience for me, so I decided to go for it! Seriously, my experience on a panamanian party bus was great! I had so much fun that I would do it again- even if I was all gross afterwards.
A Chiva is basically a party bus. If you live in Panama City, you may have noticed them before; they are usually in the streets of the city Friday and Saturday nights. They use the Diablo Rojo buses and completely transform them. When you get inside, there is a bar and a DJ. There are some seats, strap handles and poles to hold on to.
How it works:
Someone usually organizes it. They rent a bus for a night and make the party happen. Depending on how many people come, the rate will vary. I paid $15 and it has open bar but I’ve heard it can be $20.
The bus drives very slowly around the city for 3 hours. I didn’t really pay attention to where we were going until we stopped. That’s when I noticed we were at the Causeway. We stopped for a 10 min break so we could go to the bathroom. After that, the ride continues until the 3 hours are up and the Chiva drops us off where we started. Sometimes, the driver can drop you off somewhere else if you ask him.
For me, I had a great time because I was with a good crowd. Everybody was dancing with everybody. If you didn’t know someone, well after that night, you did. After the 3 hours are up, everyone is usually still in the mood to dance and party. All of us ended up going to Casco afterwards.
One thing I would advise to the girls if you go to a Chiva:
Please don’t wear heels or anything fancy. It’s a moving bus, and you are standing up dancing for 3 hours. Also, by the end of the night, you will be sweaty and probably covered in alcohol. Don’t let that scare you off though. If you are invited and you are looking for a good time, I think you should go for it!