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Old 21-03-2015, 05:57   #1
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2015 Bahamas gun check-in update

Hi fellow gun owners, I thought i would post an update for anyone checking into the Bahamas and thinking of bringing their firearms.

My wife and I are on the beginning of our circumnavigation so we brought our firearms with us. We will post an update to every country we visit and how we were treated by customs at each.

First of all we have a shotgun, a semi automatic magazine fed rifle, and a handgun. The customs agent said Welcome to bahamas! we just need to check your firearms and you'll be on your way. He came aboard at the marina. Counted the ammo, said to us "better safe than sorry out there!" and wished us a good day. We were even off by a few bullets on our declaration count... "no problem, man, that's why we count em "

"Enjoy your stay" last thing he said

So this was our bahamas check in experience. I should note we did not have over 250 rounds for any of the firearms, although we were close to the limit. Also we have a gun safe on board that is bolted to our hull which he saw but didn't comment on either way. Not sure if that mattered

Good luck and be safe everyone!

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Old 21-03-2015, 06:40   #2
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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Originally Posted by natraps116 View Post
Hi fellow gun owners, I thought i would post an update for anyone checking into the Bahamas and thinking of bringing their firearms.

My wife and I are on the beginning of our circumnavigation so we brought our firearms with us. We will post an update to every country we visit and how we were treated by customs at each.

First of all we have a shotgun, a semi automatic magazine fed rifle, and a handgun. The customs agent said Welcome to bahamas! we just need to check your firearms and you'll be on your way. He came aboard at the marina. Counted the ammo, said to us "better safe than sorry out there!" and wished us a good day. We were even off by a few bullets on our declaration count... "no problem, man, that's why we count em "

"Enjoy your stay" last thing he said

So this was our bahamas check in experience. I should note we did not have over 250 rounds for any of the firearms, although we were close to the limit. Also we have a gun safe on board that is bolted to our hull which he saw but didn't comment on either way. Not sure if that mattered

Good luck and be safe everyone!

Sent from my D6616 using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
That's great news, and you both are very smart to be prepared. Lots of nonsense can occur on the high seas. Shotgun, rifle, and handgun? Excellent choices!

Looking forward to reading your future updates, as my wife and I are planning the same in about 2 years down the road. Hope you both have a safe & wonderful circumnavigation.
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Old 21-03-2015, 07:02   #3
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

Please keep us posted as to how you are received further down the islands and when you finally decide to get rid of the guns.
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Old 21-03-2015, 07:28   #4
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

ante omnia armari
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Old 21-03-2015, 08:13   #5
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

Thanks for the thread. Looking forward to the updates.
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Old 21-03-2015, 08:48   #6
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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Please keep us posted as to how you are received further down the islands and when you finally decide to get rid of the guns.
Yeah, I wish there was some way I could place a bet with a Vegas bookie on the odds of all 3 making it around the world...

'Legally', that is...

:-)
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Old 21-03-2015, 09:12   #7
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

Glad you had such a good experience with guns in the Bahamas!! That's why the criminals don't mess with boaters in the Bahamas, because they know that most boaters are armed.

I've never had Bahamas customs check my guns, but I did have a young Bahamian Customs girl question why I carry a 50 caliper Desert Eagle. I explained to her that I carry that gun because I don't want to shoot any people, but rather blow apart the criminals out board or in board motor, then pop a couple of holes in their hull, so they can't chase me - all before they can think of boarding me.

She liked that concept, particularly since the illegal Haitian immigrants are taking over the Bahamas with crime. I've been going there for over 30 years and have watched the problem progress.

If you study Carribean crime, you will find very little boat invasion crime in the Bahamas, but lots of it everywhere else in the Carribean. Hmmm - I wonder if boaters being armed and the criminals knowing it has anything to do with that??

Obviously the Bahamas does and prefers to allow protection of it's boaters, rather than criminals.

The last story I read was in St. Lucia, where you check your guns in, removed from your boat while you're there. That way their criminals can beat to death the husband and brutalize his wife, in addition to stealing their stuff, in complete safety!! St. Lucia does not want to endanger their criminals!!
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Old 21-03-2015, 09:15   #8
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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Glad you had such a good experience with guns in the Bahamas!! That's why the criminals don't mess with boaters in the Bahamas, because they know that most boaters are armed.

I've never had Bahamas customs check my guns, but I did have a young Bahamian Customs girl question why I carry a 50 caliper Desert Eagle. I explained to her that I carry that gun because I don't want to shoot any people, but rather blow apart the criminals out board or in board motor, then pop a couple of holes in their hull, so they can't chase me - all before they can think of boarding me.

She liked that concept, particularly since the illegal Haitian immigrants are taking over the Bahamas with crime. I've been going there for over 30 years and have watched the problem progress.

If you study Carribean crime, you will find very little boat invasion crime in the Bahamas, but lots of it everywhere else in the Carribean. Hmmm - I wonder if boaters being armed and the criminals knowing it has anything to do with that??

Obviously the Bahamas does and prefers to allow protection of it's boaters, rather than criminals.

The last story I read was in St. Lucia, where you check your guns in, removed from your boat while you're there. That way their criminals can beat to death the husband and brutalize his wife, in addition to stealing their stuff, in complete safety!! St. Lucia does not want to endanger their criminals!!
Unfortunately, this St. Lucia story describes most of the Carribean - EXCLUDING THE BAHAMAS!! My favorite Place.
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Old 21-03-2015, 09:30   #9
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

This "Guns on Board" subject has changed a lot Internationally in the past few years. I spent some time with an ex-Navy Seal that has been doing armed security on container ships for roughly ten years. He told me that roughly ten years ago they had to dump their new weapons and ammo into the drink before entering some "No Gun" harbors.

Eventually his employer, Maersk Shipping, got tired of dumping new weapons in the drink and told the "No Gun" harbors that Maersk would no longer come to their harbor. As soon as the harbor ran out of toilet paper (I made that part up), they changed their rules and started allowing guns on board. Some requiring them to be locked in a safe.

According to my friend, at least in the shipping business, the "no gun" harbors are re-thinking their position.
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Old 21-03-2015, 09:58   #10
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

It will be interesting to se what they do in the DR. Friends had to carry their guns (similar to the OP's 3 guns) ashore and leave them while there. Actually they got tired of all that and sold all of them to the police when they left!
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Old 21-03-2015, 10:12   #11
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

Go to London. Bet on anything.
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Old 21-03-2015, 10:16   #12
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

Quote:
Originally Posted by timbenner View Post
Glad you had such a good experience with guns in the Bahamas!! That's why the criminals don't mess with boaters in the Bahamas, because they know that most boaters are armed.
I also suspect that's why a significant percentage of American cruisers never venture beyond Georgetown, AKA Chicken Harbor... :-)

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Originally Posted by timbenner View Post
If you study Carribean crime, you will find very little boat invasion crime in the Bahamas, but lots of it everywhere else in the Carribean...

...The last story I read was in St. Lucia, where you check your guns in, removed from your boat while you're there. That way their criminals can beat to death the husband and brutalize his wife, in addition to stealing their stuff, in complete safety!! St. Lucia does not want to endanger their criminals!!
It appears you may have to bone up a bit on your "studies" of Caribbean crime, and how it relates to the formalities of each country:

Quote:
Firearms must be declared, but no action is taken if staying less than three days, after which they must be sealed on board by a customs officer.

Yachts temporarily imported will have weapons held by customs in Castries or possibly by police if a longer permit is obtained.

St Lucia — Noonsite
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Old 21-03-2015, 10:22   #13
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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Originally Posted by timbenner View Post
Glad you had such a good experience with guns in the Bahamas!! That's why the criminals don't mess with boaters in the Bahamas, because they know that most boaters are armed.

I've never had Bahamas customs check my guns, but I did have a young Bahamian Customs girl question why I carry a 50 caliper Desert Eagle. I explained to her that I carry that gun because I don't want to shoot any people, but rather blow apart the criminals out board or in board motor, then pop a couple of holes in their hull, so they can't chase me - all before they can think of boarding me.

She liked that concept, particularly since the illegal Haitian immigrants are taking over the Bahamas with crime. I've been going there for over 30 years and have watched the problem progress.

If you study Carribean crime, you will find very little boat invasion crime in the Bahamas, but lots of it everywhere else in the Carribean. Hmmm - I wonder if boaters being armed and the criminals knowing it has anything to do with that??

Obviously the Bahamas does and prefers to allow protection of it's boaters, rather than criminals.

The last story I read was in St. Lucia, where you check your guns in, removed from your boat while you're there. That way their criminals can beat to death the husband and brutalize his wife, in addition to stealing their stuff, in complete safety!! St. Lucia does not want to endanger their criminals!!
A couple of updated answers for when people ask "Why do you carry a gun?"

I carry a gun because:

-A cop is too heavy.

-When seconds count, a cop is just minutes away.

Good choice or weapons, I might want a longer range rifle like an M1A with a 30 rd. magazine stacked with every third round a tracer, as well. I would think a few tracers across the pow of a suspicious fast approaching vessel might make them alter course.

What scares me is that if they board at night then you are trapped in the boat with no way out. For those who are aware, fiberglass does not stop high powered rifle bullets. I thought a pair of Claymores strapped to the mast, one pointed fore, one aft, and able to be triggered from with in, would pretty well clear the deck and give you a chance to come out firing. It may trash the deck but you can replace that. You could have them covered nicely in fiberglass to avoid suspicion.

Thoughts
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Old 21-03-2015, 10:30   #14
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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What scares me is that if they board at night then you are trapped in the boat with no way out. For those who are aware, fiberglass does not stop high powered rifle bullets. I thought a pair of Claymores strapped to the mast, one pointed fore, one aft, and able to be triggered from with in, would pretty well clear the deck and give you a chance to come out firing. It may trash the deck but you can replace that. You could have them covered nicely in fiberglass to avoid suspicion.

Thoughts
Claymores will damage your rigging, and what if you're on deck during a lightening strike?

OP I'm interested in how much of an actual hassle you run in to, so please use the report feature to keep the thread on track and open, and the haters at bay.
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Old 21-03-2015, 10:33   #15
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Re: 2015 bahamas gun check-in update

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Claymores will damage your rigging, and what if you're on deck during a lightening strike?

OP I'm interested in how much of an actual hassle you run in to, so please use the report feature to keep the thread on track and open, and the haters at bay.
Not worried about the rigging, that can all be replaced with money. But good point on the lightening strike. What happens normally on a strike?
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