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Old 22-10-2011, 20:58   #16
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

please advise as to lines needed--specific specs???? trying to get it together before leaving mazatlan....
and if i remove mizzen boom or wrap itto mizzenmast should that keep length down?? i am concerned about being longer than 50 ft
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Old 22-10-2011, 23:51   #17
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Lines needed are a waist of time you can hire them it does mean you don't have to spend the huge amount of money and waisted space storing them. SAVE YOUR MONEY.
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Old 22-10-2011, 23:53   #18
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Sorry forgot to say the length of the boat does include anything overhanging and they will come and measure so by taking off or wrapping would be a good idea to keep you below the 50' mark.
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Old 22-10-2011, 23:54   #19
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Hi Dear Friend,

FYG - your bote can use 3/4 inch line and if over 50 feet 1 inch, but you can rent the lines with the fenders Usd 120.00. Removing mizzen boom could help but as mentioned before Canal Inspector is the one who will determine
your boat lenght once same is measure.

Best Regards,
Roy Bravo

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
please advise as to lines needed--specific specs???? trying to get it together before leaving mazatlan....
and if i remove mizzen boom or wrap itto mizzenmast should that keep length down?? i am concerned about being longer than 50 ft
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Hello Cruising Yachtsmen,

If you are planning to transit the Panama Canal in the near future, Emmanuel Agencies, S.A. will be an excellent choice in providing high quality service for a smooth passage either side (Pacific or Atlantic Ocean).
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Old 23-10-2011, 06:59   #20
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

A note to Emmanuel Agencies,

I am planning to transit the canal in late December or Early January and would appreciate an agent quote as well as some clarification on the fees you noted above.

My boat is an Alberg 30:
LOA: 30 feet 4 inches
Beam: 8 feet 9 inches
Gross Tonnage: roughly 6 tons

Can you clarify what the auto hire and ADCS charges are. Also, how would I contact you if I decide to obtain your services.

Please provide me with a quote as you did for 'bstreep' above.

Thank you.
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Old 23-10-2011, 10:04   #21
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Good Morning,

Thanks for getting in contact with us requesting costs for canal transit. Please note ADCS charge is a fee apply to register your vsl in the Canal Data and the Auto Hire is apply when visiting your vsl from either side (Pacific or Atlantic).
If you need a reliable agent you can contact us via email at emmanuelagencies@emmanuelagenciessa.com, basis on your below information please see estimate canal transit expenses for your good
vessel as follows :

Canal Tolls Usd 500.00
Linehandlers (Usd 120.00 per man) 120.00 (if needed)
Line hire/fenders 120.00
Canal inspection 55.00
Security surcharge 55.00
Immigration (Usd 10.00 per passport) 10.00
Navegation permit/clearance 210.00
Bank Commission 30.00
Transit agency fee - basic 350.00
ADCS charge 100.00
Auto hire 100.00

Total estimate expenses Usd1,650.00

Awaiting your further advise, tks.

Best Regards,
Roy Bravo
General Manager
Phone : +(507) 441-5652
Mobile : +(507) 6678-6820 (24 hrs)
Emmanuel Agencies, S.A.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fullCastle View Post
A note to Emmanuel Agencies,

I am planning to transit the canal in late December or Early January and would appreciate an agent quote as well as some clarification on the fees you noted above.

My boat is an Alberg 30:
LOA: 30 feet 4 inches
Beam: 8 feet 9 inches
Gross Tonnage: roughly 6 tons

Can you clarify what the auto hire and ADCS charges are. Also, how would I contact you if I decide to obtain your services.

Please provide me with a quote as you did for 'bstreep' above.

Thank you.
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Hello Cruising Yachtsmen,

If you are planning to transit the Panama Canal in the near future, Emmanuel Agencies, S.A. will be an excellent choice in providing high quality service for a smooth passage either side (Pacific or Atlantic Ocean).
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Old 23-10-2011, 10:54   #22
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emmanuel Agencies View Post
Hi Dear Friend,

Thanks for your positive response!

Have a nice week end!

Best Regards,
Roy Bravo
This site is about answering questions, and helping people. I think you're too high for what is offered. It is a positive response for those who wish to transit for less money. Just because you're the only broker here, doesn't mean you're the only way to transit the canal. To keep the atmosphere nice here. Anyone wanting a few tips to lower the costs can P.M me if they wish........i2f
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Old 23-10-2011, 11:11   #23
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Hi Dear Friend,

Further to your below please note Emmanuel Agencies, S.A. is a shipping
company providing a high quality service we are not brokers, if our clients
needs a discount basis on quotation sent we can do an adjustment once
they contact us, tks.

Best Regards,
Roy Bravo

Quote:
Originally Posted by imagine2frolic View Post
This site is about answering questions, and helping people. I think you're too high for what is offered. It is a positive response for those who wish to transit for less money. Just because you're the only broker here, doesn't mean you're the only way to transit the canal. To keep the atmosphere nice here. Anyone wanting a few tips to lower the costs can P.M me if they wish........i2f
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Hello Cruising Yachtsmen,

If you are planning to transit the Panama Canal in the near future, Emmanuel Agencies, S.A. will be an excellent choice in providing high quality service for a smooth passage either side (Pacific or Atlantic Ocean).
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Old 25-10-2011, 16:52   #24
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Emmanuel Agencies:

Thank you for the quote and fee clarification. Do you have an email address or web-site so that I may contact you directly in the event that I retain your services as transit agent.

Thank you.
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Old 25-10-2011, 20:05   #25
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Hi Dear Friend,

Thanks again for contacting us, please see our contact details as follows :

Email : emmanuelagencies@emmanuelagenciessa.com
Web-site : www.emmanuelagenciessa.com

Awaiting your further advise!

Best Regards,
Roy Bravo

Quote:
Originally Posted by fullCastle View Post
Emmanuel Agencies:

Thank you for the quote and fee clarification. Do you have an email address or web-site so that I may contact you directly in the event that I retain your services as transit agent.

Thank you.
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Hello Cruising Yachtsmen,

If you are planning to transit the Panama Canal in the near future, Emmanuel Agencies, S.A. will be an excellent choice in providing high quality service for a smooth passage either side (Pacific or Atlantic Ocean).
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Old 30-01-2012, 13:16   #26
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Panama Canal Passage Info - January 2012

Panama Canal Transit (as of 2012) - Atlantic to Pacific

Just completed an East to West transit of the Panama Canal on January 22nd and 23rd. Below are the procedures to check in through customs and immigration and the Canal Authority. I have included waypoints for anchorages, locations for the various officials, and telephone numbers for agents and taxi drivers. In Colon and Crystobal the taxi driver is the best source of information for the cruiser.


There are two channels through the breakwall into the canal area on the Atlantic side. It is advisable to enter through the East channel as it avoids the majority of the large ships which use the main or West channel. Large ships also use the East channel but there is less traffic here.

Inside the breakwall there are three locations for the cruiser to stop; Club Nautico in Colon (n9 21.8 w79.5), Shelter Bay Marina on the West side of the entrance (n9 22.1 w79 56.9), or The Flats near Crystobal (n9 20.6 w79 54.8). The anchorage near Club Nautico is the better of the three as it is close to the marina dock and costs only $5US per day for the dingy. It is also close to the supermarket and has water and diesel fuel available. They have dock space but it is very limited and used by commercial boats. The anchorage on The Flats is free but has no nearby dock. The marina in Shelter Bay is distant from the supermarket and costs $1.20 per foot per day with a minimum charge of $50US if you are under 40 feet in length.

I anchored near Club Nautico because I entered the East channel near sundown and simply looked for masts with the binoculars. I headed toward the first ones I saw and anchored along with three other boats just outside the main channel. The anchorage is tight and gets turbulent periodically when large cruise ships use the nearby turning basin to spin 180 degrees allowing them to back into the cruise ship terminal just South of the anchorage. I was there 10 days and saw about 6 cruise ships enter, however only two caused turbulence in the anchorage. The boats here are reasonably safe and there was always other cruisers nearby. The fewest number of boats with me there were 3 and the maximum was 16.

The information below regarding customs and immigration are based on a landing at Club Nautico in Colon. It may be different if you land at one of the other 2 locations.

When you make landfall at Club Nautico you must first see the Port Captain to receive a Declaration. Check with the office to find him as he is not always there. The office is where you pay for your dingy dockage and is near the main gate on the left just past the Arricefes Restaurant. The grounds are gated with a security guard so ask him for assistance if you have difficulty. My Spanish is limited to please and thank you, hello and good bye, so anyone can negotiate the language barrier. Just be polite. The Port Captain will require a copy of passports for all persons onboard, a copy of your vessels registry, a clearance form from your last port especially if coming from the US, and a copy of the crew list. The crew list needs the following information; vessel name and country of registry, name of each crew member, birth date, nationality, and passport number. It is best to print the crew list before arrival and have at least 10 copies on hand as well as 10 copies of all passports and 10 copies of the vessels registry. If you do not things take substantially longer. I did not have the clearance form from my departure in Miami but since I did not have a passport stamp from the US I was able to convince the Port Captain that I came direct from Canada and ony stopped in Miami for fuel and water.

With your Customs Declaration in hand, as well as copies of the documents mentioned above and all crew members, you then head to the Port Authority at the 'Port of Colon'. It is a large warehouse type building near the cruise ship terminal and is visible to the South of the anchorage. Exit the main gate of the Club Nautico marina and go left. It is about a 5 to 10 minute walk and is dinstinctly marked with 'Port of Colon' above the main entrance. Simply show your passport to the gate guard and point at the building and he will escort you to the right location. Here you will have your passports stamped and the process is very smooth as long as you have the Declaration and document copies mentioned above.

From here you need to go the the immigration office in downtown Colon. Take a taxi for a fee of $1US as directions are difficult and walking the streets of Colon is not recommended. At this office you will again need to present copies of all documents as well as passports. You will get your passports stamped with a visa. The fee for this is $10US and I believe that is for each visa. I am a solo sailor so am making educated speculation here.

You then must register with the Canal Authority to prepare for the transit. Take a taxi to the 'Crystobal signal Tower' as it is not possible to walk there. Here you must present the ever required copies mentioned above and they register your vessel for a transit. They then give you a phone number to call when you are ready to transit as someone from the 'Admeasures Office' must come aboard to inspect your vessel. There is no fee here and you should get the taxi to wait for you as this building is beyond the docklands and is secluded.

In order to transit you must have 4 line handlers besides the helmsman, 4 lines a minimum of 125 feet in length and 7/8 inch in diameter, as well as adequate fenders. It is recommended that for fenders you use tires which when rented, come wrapped in plastic to prevents marking your hull. The lines can be rented at a cost of $20US each, the line handlers can be anyone able bodied. If you do not have sufficient crew you can solicit crew from other vessels or hire local line handlers in the area at a cost of $90US to $110US each. There are several taxi drivers and freelancers in the area to call upon for these items and line handlers. I have listed some below including phone numbers. You may also acquire the services of an agent who will do most of the paperwork on your behalf and will supply the lines and tires as part of his fee. He will also provide line handlers at the lowest cost mentioned above.

The real benefit of using an agent is that you do not have to pay the security deposit in order to transit. The Canal Authority requires you to pay a refundable fee of (in my case) $800US which is used in the event of an emergency so that your vessel does not impede the canal operation. That is, if you have engine failure, you are towed at considerable cost to yourself. This fee is refunded to you via a bank account or by cheque in three weeks of transiting.

If you plan to cruise the area while in Panama you will require a cruising permit at a cost of $193US. It is acquired at the Port Authority in Crystobal. I was told by the Port Captain that this was required to transit the canal as I would need to present it when completing the later paperwork. However I was never asked to provide it and was told by a canal adviser that it was not necessary for a simple transit. Oddly enough the Port Captain drove me to the office in his own vehicle so that I could purchase one. Perhaps he received a fee. I would recommend that anyone simply doing a transit and continuing on their journey save themselves the $193US. You will however require a ZARPE before transiting. This is your clearance document and must be obtained at the Port Authority in Crystobal. The fees add up to under $20US.

When you are ready to transit call the Admeasures Office and they will tell you when someone will come to The Flats to inspect your boat. You must go at the appointed time and anchor in the area demarked by large yellow buoys to await the inspection. The inspector is brought onboard and measures your length and beam. He also inspects your toilet, galley, and confirms that you have a working horn. He advises you that you are required to provide meals and bottled water for the mandatory pilot or 'canal adviser' that will accompany you through the canal. After filling out some forms, you sign them and he departs after telling you to call the office the following day to obtain your transit time. There is no fee charged here but is payable at the bank. You must pay the transit fees at the Citi Bank, which is near the Port Authority in Crystobal, before a transit time is scheduled.

On you day of transit you must again be anchored in The Flats with your required lines, fenders, and line handlers aboard by about 3pm. You then contact the 'Crystobal Signal Tower' on VHF channel 12 and inform them that you are awaiting your pilot. They will let you know when he is due to come onboard which will be that evening.

Pleasure craft are now transited in stages over two days. The upbound portion is completed at night on the first day and you must anchor on Gatun Lake overnight and make the 30 mile run to the downbound locks the next day. The new pilot arrives between 6:30am and 7:30am and you then head to the downbound locks. The transit of these locks is done around noon. There are three locks upbound and they are consecutive. There are also three locks downbound but there is a one mile lake between locks one and two.

The literature indicates three methods of transit. A vessel can be center chamber with the 4 - 7/8 inch lines holding you in position, against the wall, or tied to a tug that transits along with the merchant vessel that will likely be in the lock with you. Currently however the second and third method are not used. Yachts are almost always rafted together in groups of three and transit center chamber with the 4 - 7/8 inch lines holding them in position. The raft is maintained intact for the duration of the three locks and only separated once the final lock is cleared. This is also the case for the downbound locks and the raft proceeds through the one mile lake separating downbound locks one and two intact.

Upon clearing the locks in Gatun Lake on the first night the pilot directs you to an anchorage (n9 15.6 w79 55.0) and is picked up by a pilot boat. Any local line handlers you have hired must remain onboard for the duration of the transit. They are not allowed to disembark. After clearing the downbound locks the pilot departs just before the Bridge of The Americas.


Notes
-----
Th buoyage changes at the downbound locks as the red and green reverse according to IALA rules.

The fees for transiting for a vessel under 50 feet are currently $500Us for the transit and $54US for the inspection. The transit fee for vessels over 50 feet is $750US. I am uncertain of the upper length of this bracket.

Everyone who does paperwork for you expects a $10US tip to have things go smoothly. In a town where taxi drivers charge $1US per ride I felt in unconscionable to pay this tip when someone was simply doing their job. I did not pay these tips but was always extremely polite so my delays were not significant.

There is a free anchorage with free dock usage on the Pacific side just near Isla Perico on the East side of the breakwall (n8 55.0 w79 31.8).



Contacts (some numbers have 7 digits and some 8)
-------------------------------------------------
Admeasures Office (Laura) - 443 2298
Citi Bank - 441-6303

Taxi drivers for lines, bumpers, and line handlers:
Rudy - 674 37241
Joseph (works with Rudy) - 679 21969
Tito (famous in the business) - 646 35009 titoservice2009@hotmail.com

Agent:
Centenario Consultant Agency - Erick Galvez - (507)6676 1376 or (507)232 7534 info@centenarioconsulting.com or admin@centenarioconsulting.com Centenario & Co., S.A.
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Old 19-02-2012, 14:46   #27
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

We went through the Canal last January and did all of the arrangements ourselves. All the horror stories are not true. You don't need an agent, a $70 taxi guy to show you the steps, Spanish language skills, nor 'tips'. Not counting fees to get into (and move around) Panama (we were coming from Porvenir in the San Blas), the canal transit cost us about $600. We had enough fenders from our boat and a friend's boat and enough long lines (we had some extra long lines for anchoring, tying off, etc. They recommend, but do not require 7/8" lines, ours were 3/4" for a 36,000 lb boat and were fine - but remember these lines could have three boat pulling on them, so they do need to be robust. We arranged with other cruisers to be our line-handlers and then we took the bus back to Colon to line handle on their boat (bus is something like $3 but takes longer than you think). After our transit, our linehandlers hired one of the transit drivers to take them and about a dozen fenders and four long lines back to Colon for $100 in a pickup. That is pricey but was convenient - I am sure you could get a taxi (might need two with the fenders) for much less.

Some other thoughts -
- We did not anchor in the lake but instead were tied to the biggest mooring you could ever imagine. You could have had a small square dance on the mooring 'ball', more like a platform, that I assume is also used by ships.
- The main street in Colon during daytime is quite safe as is the Cristobal area where the Canal authorities and bank are. Other than that, take cabs, they are everywhere and for one person they are 75 cents. Two young guys delivering a boat went to a disco one night and got mugged, which surprised no one.
- We spent one night anchored in The Flats because there was a very bad swell running at Club Nautico. We were told by the admeasurer and one of the transit advisors (after the fact) that The Flats is not a safe place to spend the night, but you will need to move your boat there for the measure (this is where you want good fenders, the guy comes and it picked up in about a 60' steel workboat - for the locking you really only need good enough fenders for rafting)
- The marina is quite nice but is not conveniently-located to town.
- There is decent shopping in Colon but outstanding shopping in Panama City (a couple of stores like Costco - beer is $9 a case and wine $2 a litre (and decent)), so save your major provisioning to the Pacific side
- We had our deposit mailed to our home base in Canada, but people who stayed in Balboa seemed to get theirs quite quickly and it is a very pleasant spot to spend a few weeks.
- They are very strict about the four line-handlers. We went through with two other boats, so there were 12 line handlers of which 4 actually did anything - it was a bit of party and quite pleasant overall - but even if you know you are going through with another boat they still will count the line-handlers before you leave The Flats. Be prepared to go at night. Our advisors arrived three hours late so we did the fist set of locks in the dark. The preparation is all in your head. You are motoring along on a pleasant evening and then arrive at the locks with dazzling lights and the usual confusion. The freigher ahead of us got sideways a bit and we were already rafted so had to find a way to kill ten minutes and coordinate between the advisors (good English) and the skipper of the big cat in the middle (not good English - I think one of the advisor knew French, and the advisors used Spanish between them, so it was trilingual.
- The two times we went through, the pull on the aft lines in the locks was much stronger than in the bow, but the boats seemed to be positioned so that the bow lines needed to be longer. The sample size is too small make generalities but consider this. In the stern, we ran the lines to sheet winches for snubbing. I think once or twice we used a winch handle, but overall the locks are no big deal.
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Old 20-02-2012, 16:34   #28
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

Excellent detailed information.
I went through last December, right before Christmas, from Pacific to Atlantic. I also have not used any agent or any other help. The process is simple enough. I got my deposit check back in the middle of January.
Panama Canal update

I'd like to add the document from the AUTORIDAD DEL CANAL DE PANAMA which contains a lot of info and helps with understanding the process.
http://www.pancanal.com/common/marit...s/4352-eng.pdf

Here is a short movie (part 1 and part 2) from our transit with friend's boat Husaria. Sorry - it's in Polish.. Two boats transiting, night at Gatun, mostly two boat raft and once (Miraflores) alongside the tug.
http://yachthusaria.com/?post_type=portfolio&p=1514
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Old 18-08-2012, 05:20   #29
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It was nice of the peanut farmer to turn the canal over. Palm greasing is now an essential element of passage.
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Old 18-08-2012, 05:43   #30
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Re: Panama Canal Passage

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It was nice of the peanut farmer to turn the canal over. Palm greasing is now an essential element of passage.
So what evidence do you have that any 'palm greasing' is required for a Canal transit. Did you some how have to pay a bribe? This is just made up trash. The ACP runs a professional organization and there is no 'palm greasing' that goes on with ACP personnel that setup small boat transits. You can disagree with American forgiegn policy as much as you want, but you can't make up the facts to bolster your argument.
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