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Old 12-08-2009, 10:37   #1
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Exclamation Canadians Bound for the Caribbean - Got Questions!

Hey Guys,

Going sailing in the Bahamas/Caribbean come November! A few logistical things we still need sorting out though.

We are Canadian. Will there be any trouble for us buying a boat in the States? We're looking for a used boat in Florida.

Do we need visas to travel from country to country?

Is it possible to find short term work anywhere? Like week to week? What about for a longer period, say a month or two?

Do we need any medical shots in advance?

About 3 months now until our trip, thanks so much for helping us get some stuff sorted out!

Daniel
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:04   #2
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Lots of boats in FL. Just bring money.

No visa required for most countries.

Not much chance of foreigners getting work anywhere.

I would get a couple of hepatitis shots.

Don't count on buying a boat and heading out in short order. It may be months to get a suitable boat and even more time to get it ready. Be prepared to see a lot of dogs before you find the right boat.
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:07   #3
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Lots of good boats for sale in Florida, no tax if you get them out and sale to Canadians not a problem. No visas or shots. Work hard to find as most Caribbean countries insist on hard to get work permits.

My sailing club, CGSC, often has boats who'se owners are desperate to sell.

CGSC.org

Best boat buys seem to be in S Florida and if you need a surveyor Henry is excellent...
Mustin Marine Surveys, Miami, Florida, USA
http://www.amazon.com/Surveying-Fibe.../dp/0070442487

Good luck Phil & Nell
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:11   #4
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Vasco has it right on all counts. Depending upon where you are in Canada, flights to Fla. are very cheap. I would set up some appointments on likey suspects (including test sails), take a week now and fly down for inspections. If you find one you want to buy, make sure the offer is conditional on a survey. You may end up with a price adjustment (or the ability to get out of a deal for a bad boat), but you will also get a chance to find out what will be required before you depart. I would also get a closing date around your time of arrival to allow sufficient time in Florida to get the boat ready (see below).

Yes, there is also a limit to the time you can keep the boat in Florida post purchase before being required to pay state taxes (and it is fairly short - I am thinking its about a month). Where do you plan on registering the boat?

Brad
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:37   #5
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Yes, there is also a limit to the time you can keep the boat in Florida post purchase before being required to pay state taxes (and it is fairly short - I am thinking its about a month). Where do you plan on registering the boat?

Brad

The time limit can be as short as 10 days and the maximum is 90 days with certain limitations. Get out fast or pay the sales tax.
FL Dept Rev - Sales and Use Tax on Boats - Owners and Purchasers
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:47   #6
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When I bought in FL I was asked by the broker to sign a sheet saying I would leave in 90 days. If your boat is being worked on you might get an extension. If you fly to Fl the right time (no spring break etc going on) it can be cheap. I have rented cars during those periods for $14 a day and less for a weekly! If you stay further North like the Space Coast etc, you can get a little motel on the beach for $400 a week or so.
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:50   #7
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Why are you set on buying in the States? Have you considered buying one in the Caribbean? It would probably save you a hard to the wind nasty sail down in the winter.
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Old 12-08-2009, 12:11   #8
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"it's the journey , not the destination!" besides, they'd miss the best part of the whole Caribe... the Bahamas!
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Old 12-08-2009, 12:14   #9
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Good point, Reality Check - although the number of available boats is much smaller and the costs associated with going down and checking out what are bound to include a number of 'dogs' will be much higher. Further, in many places the cost and availability of parts for a refit will also be a negative.

Brad
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Old 12-08-2009, 12:43   #10
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Buy on Lake Ontario and get a fresh water boat!
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Old 12-08-2009, 13:22   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
"it's the journey , not the destination!" besides, they'd miss the best part of the whole Caribe... the Bahamas!

BUT, the Bahamas are Not part of the Caribbean!!!

Many locations in the Caribbean have large availability of boats such as USVI, BVI. St Martin and others and the parts availability is generally not an huge issue as many chandeliers can deliver what you need or you can have one of the many US based companies ship them direct at very low cost such as Tropical Shipping.

Preselecting via internet and having a broker supply information will reduce the leg time and number of candidate boats. It really isn't much of a problem. I did it and large numbers of others have and are doing the same. I considered the trip down for final selection and a series of sea trials on the final few to be a vacation with benefits
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Old 12-08-2009, 13:31   #12
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I stand corrected, but they are on "the Path"

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Old 12-08-2009, 15:02   #13
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Mine's for sale and ready to return to the Caribbean; already registered for the Carib 1500. See Yachtworld - Taswell 58.
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Old 13-08-2009, 21:09   #14
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I would agree that you should look in the Caribbean. Start in Puerto Rico and work you way through the Virgins to St. Martin/St.Maarten and maybe even Antigua. There are so many charter agencies in this area that you probably can find a good boat reasonably ready to go. There are major boat parts stores on Puerto Rico, the Virgins and St Maarten. Prices will be higher than in Florida but you will save tons of money not having to slog upwind and up current through some seriously nasty water between the Bahamas and the Virgins. You can visit what you missed on the back back (downwind and downcurrent).
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Old 14-08-2009, 10:35   #15
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There are a lot of boats stored in Trini that appear to need new partners too
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