Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: 21-Aug-2012

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What is the current toll paid for transiting the Canal?

Details under Maritime Services.

How many times have the tolls been increased?

By October 1, 2013, there will have been fourteen (14) toll increases:

  • July 8, 1974 - 19.7%
  • November 18, 1976 - 19.5%
  • October 1, 1979 - 29.3%
  • March 12, 1983 - 9.8%
  • October 1, 1989 - 9.8%
  • October 1, 1992 - 9.9%
  • January 1, 1997 - implementation in two (2) phases:
    • January 1, 1997 - 8.2%
    • January 1, 1998 - 7.5%
  • October 1, 2002 - implementation in two (2) phases:
    • October 1, 2002 - 8%
    • July 1, 2003 - 4.5%
  • May 1, 2005 - Adjustment per TEU with implementation in three (3) phases:
    • May 1, 2005
    • May 1, 2006
    • May 1, 2007
  • July 1, 2007 - implementation in three (3) phases:
    • July and October 1, 2007 - 5.7% average
    • May and October 1, 2008 - 14.2% average
    • May and October 1, 2009 -10.1% average
    • January 1, 2011 – 12.0% average
    • October 1, 2012 – implementation in 2 phases:
      • October 1, 2012 – 5.02% average
      • October 1, 2013 – 5.02% average

What is the lowest toll paid to date?

The lowest tolls to date were paid by Richard Halliburton, who swam the Panama Canal in 1928.  Halliburton paid only 36 cents.

Which vessel made the fastest transit through the Panama Canal?

The fastest transit was made by the U.S. Navy hydrofoil Pegasus, which crossed the Canal from Miraflores to Gatun in 2 hours 41 minutes in June 1979.

How many vessels have transited the Canal since its inauguration?
At the end of fiscal year 2011, 1,015,721 vessels had used the waterway since its opening on August 15, 1914. On September 4, 2010, the Fortune Plum became the one millionth ship to transit the Panama Canal.