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Old 16-02-2014, 17:38   #1
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Cuba to US - crew wanted

Iím Simon, a Kiwi, sailing along Cubaís south coast, and looking for crew (1 or 2) to help me sail my yacht, and share the costs. For the past 3 months it has cost me approximately $9USD/day. The loose plan is to sail west along the south coast, up to Havana, and then on to the USA. From there Iím planning on sailing north along the Intra Coastal Waterway (ICW) to New England.
Cuba has the best snorkelling, fishing and cruising of all of the Caribbean. The boat is a very comfortable and safe 30ft sail boat, with 4 berths (beds). This would suit someone who has been, and enjoys camping. No boating experience is necessary. Iím very flexible with the dates, however itís necessary to have someone available for the passage from Cuba to the USA. Cuba is a very interesting and exhilarating place to cruise, offering untouched oceans, and an unrivalled cultural experience.
My boat is a Nonsuch 30 catboat. Sheís incredibly easy to sail, very beamy and spacious inside. The big kitchen turns out great food Ė fresh sashimi, lobster Thai curry, tuna and conch marinara...
There is no fridge as all food is caught/bought fresh. There is also no shower, but Iíve found a daily swim followed with a fresh water rinse suffices. Onboard toilet. Running costs are low as most travel is by means of sail. Food is incredibly cheap in Cuba - $2USD/day.
A typical day would consist of a great sleep at a beautiful and quiet anchorage, waking to fresh coffee, tea and fruit for breakfast. A morning swim amongst the fish. Then either a sail along the coast, or a trip ashore exploring remote unsettled Cayoís (islands), or tripping ashore mainland Cuba Ė wandering the cities, interacting with the locals, exploring markets, eating, drinking, dancing. Often in the afternoons weíll fish and dive to catch dinner Ė fish, lobster, conch... After cooking up the days catch, the evening is spent watching the sunset with a beer, wine or rums.

Email me with any questions

A little about me Ė Iíve spent a lot of time at sea, with commercial skippers qualifications, and this is my second trip through the Caribbean. Iím a carpenter by trade but cruising is my passion. Iím very relaxed and easy going, but also very cautious on the water.

Simon Cleaver

Hi, Iím Luke. Iíve spent the last 3 months cruising the Caribbean on ĎCatí with Simon. Iíve done a lot of cruising before and have to say this is by far the best. The mix of the cultural experience in Cuba, and the cruising, fishing and snorkelling, has been incredible. Days spent, relaxing on the boat, diving for lobster and conch, eating incredible fresh meals, mingling with the locals. It was surprising, coming from New Zealand, how safe I felt throughout Cuba. Iíve loved the warmth, sincerity, and passion with how the Cubans go about their lives. Iíve loved the varied days on this trip - sipping mojitos, learning salsa and Spanish from the locals, and low key days of reading books with beer in hand. It was very difficult leaving, however reality calls.

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Old 16-02-2014, 19:07   #2
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

I am very interested, email sent.

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Old 17-02-2014, 06:07   #3
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

I would like to meet you and hear of your experiences in Cuba. Depending upon the time/date I may have a temporary free dock for you here in Key West.
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Old 22-02-2014, 02:36   #4
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

Are there no issues for US citizen/passport, or other limitations for entry exit?
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Old 22-02-2014, 04:56   #5
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

No problems in Cuba. Another issue when returning to the US. As crew on a foreign vessel you could make a strong case your trip was fully sponsored. go for it and let us know how you get on.
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Old 22-02-2014, 09:31   #6
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

I was seriously considering this trip and read this on another forum.


There are no restrictions for non-US citizens traveling between Cuba and the US beyond the normal Visa requirements.
There ARE restrictions for US citizens wishing to travel between Cuba & the US. Cuban refugees (eg., folks with family there) are allowed to visit "X" times per year; all others are not allowed except by special State dept. clearance (in other words: forget about it).
You could fly to Mexico and then to Cuba and sail back to the US. I would expect a warm reception from immigration though once they figure out that the captain of the boat you are on last cleared out of Cuba.
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Old 22-02-2014, 09:49   #7
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

American government states all Americans are forbidden to spend money in Cuba.
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Old 22-02-2014, 09:52   #8
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Re: Cuba to US - crew wanted

There are still, apparently, lots of problems for US citizens even though there has been a lot of talk over the past 5 years or so about the US relaxing restrictions. I believe that there are several ways to have legal sponsorship but I'm not sure that you can do it as crew on a sailboat.

I have friends with non-US citizenship who had some issues with getting a cruising permit when they entered the US from Cuba (to Key West, I think). I may try to contact them and see what their experience was.


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