Here's the Readers Digest version of the story behind our printer and why everyone needs one. We decided that we would do all of our own customs, immigration, and canal paperwork in Panama. After running around we finally found the location to do the first part of our checking in. The second part was a few doors down. When we got there they told us that we needed to have copies of the stuff from the first place but wouldn't make them for us on the copy machine they had. Where were we supposed to get copies in Colon, Panama (super dangerous place I might add). Long story short we ended up paying the marina to finish our customs and immigration paperwork but decided we needed to have a scanner and printer that we could take with us if we ever needed to again.
We did do all our own canal paperwork. That may be the one well run thing in Panama, which makes sense since it brings in so much money. We had no problem getting it set up on our own. We didn't use an agent and are happy we didn't. We've heard of a number of boats that didn't get their canal deposits back. We had to wait for ours and it was mailed to the states but at least we got it. Other boats have told us that their agents ran off with the money.
We've never actually carried our printer with us but we recommend that everyone get this printer. It is bluetooth and rechargeable. And unlike other rechargeable items it keeps a charge for a long time. We love that we can pull it out to print without needing to get out tons of cords. Absolutely great on a boat. We love it so much that when the Christchurch Earthquake hit it was one of the items we thought we lost in our appartement so we ordered another one right away for my mom to bring with her. Of course we didn't know we would actually be getting the stuff in the apartment back (or the condition of anything since the sprinklers had gone off in the building) so my mom brought it to us and now we have two of them on the boat.
Unfortunately as I'm writing this and looking up the info it appears as if the price has gone up considerably. It was only $220 when we got bought the replacement last year and it no longer comes with the bluetooth adapter or cover like ours did which is an additional cost. I would probably still recommend it for a boat, small apartment, or anyone who needs to be able to easily store their printer or have one on the go but the new price is really to high. Maybe there is another good option out there?