In late October we called in at Sarande, Albania on our way from Sibari, Calabria to Lefkada, Greece
. We are a non-vat paid boat registered in Guernsey so follow the rules for non-EU boats.
We called an agent, Agim Zholi (+355 692 566576 and agimzholi*at*yahoo*dot*com
) as we passed the heel of Italy
and he was waiting for us at the quay in Sarande the next morning. He speaks good English
, took our paperwork and passports, returning with our inward clearance and shore passes within 30 minutes. My wife travels on her South African passport and had no Albanian visa. The authorities had no problem with this. Sarande is a commercial
port and has no marina. Mooring
is alongside a quay wall tucked into the corner of the harbour and is inside the secure area. When I asked, I was assured that leaving the boat unattended presented no problems (as indeed was the case).
We found the people friendly enough, especially when we had committed a couple of words of the local language to our memory. The town had basically anything you needed food
and restaurant wise but limited chandlery
Checking out also took less than 30 minutes (again done by Agim). Costs were Euro 70 inclusive of 2 nights port fees
and an Albanian flag.
All in all, an easy, pleasant and cost effective way to get out of the EU. We will return next year and do some inland travelling.