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Old 18-01-2006, 08:24   #1
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Clearing-in to Mexico

The following is info we have acquired about the check in procedures for Mexico. Upon arrival you must call the Port Captain on VHF and notify them that you have arrived. They should make arrangements for Sanitation to come to the boat to do their inspection. No crew should go ashore till that is done. Once they have inspected, the Q flag can come down and you can proceed. There is no charge for this. Next you go to Immigrations with your passports. They fill out a short form and stamp the passports. They will give you a form to take to the bank to pay the Immigration fees. They were $21.00 US per passport. The bank stamps the form and returns it to you. Don't lose that form. Next stop is the Port Captain. Upon our arrival we were told we must hire an agent. We had been expecting this. We informed them that we were aware of the change of law and that an agent is not required. They told us the law here in Isla Mujeres is that an agent is required. We knew that was not true. We had a copy of the December issue of Latitude 38 stating all of the changes for clearing under Reglamento 69 passed and signed in to law by President Fox which applies to ALL of Mexico of which Isla Mujeres is part. Our next contact was to Tere Grossman of the Mexican Marina Owners Association. She was instrumental in getting this legislation passed. She is in constant contact with the Director of Port Captains in Mexico City on just these issues. By the end of the day we received a email from her stating that she had passed our email on to the Director and he was to call the Port Captain here and inform him that he was not to require an agent. When we returned to the Port Captain office we were processed with no problem but we had been told that they were only doing this for us and others would have to use an agent. The charge depends on the size of the boat and was $26.00 US for Sea Trek which is 40 feet. You still must have or acquire the Importada for the boat and that is another process. Under Mexican Federal law it is illegal for a Port Captain to require a PLEASURE boat to hire an agent. It is also illegal for a Port Captain to charge additional fees to check in to other ports after you have cleared in to Mexico officially. Tere Grossman can be contacted at grossman@sancarlosmarina.com and welcomes anyone that is having problems. It appears that the Port Captains in Isla Mujeres and Puerto Morelos on the Atlantic side are the only ones not in compliance. We hope our actions and that of other cruisers will change that. We emphasize that through this entire process we remained friendly and courteous and believe that helped move the situation along. They know this is wrong but don't want to let go of the old ways. They acted as if this was something they knew nothing about. There was a meeting in Mexico City of all Port Captains to explain the new law when it was passed. Hope this info helps.
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Old 18-01-2006, 08:58   #2
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In a thread above you said that you have been running into this problem allot. Is this your main example or are there others? I would very much like to hear about your travels.
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Old 18-01-2006, 09:16   #3
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IS, Many others are also experiencing this problem on the Caribbean side of Mexico. The Pacific is no problem and all Port Captains are complying there. You can read all about our travels at http://7knots.com and click on Captains Log. Enter Sea Trek in the box for boat name and click search. All of our posts will come up and you can read about our entire trip. Chuck
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Old 18-01-2006, 09:28   #4
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This is going to take some time to get through.
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Old 19-01-2006, 06:02   #5
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Chuck, I hope you're still an SSCA member and that you submit a similar summary to the above to the Bulletin as it's sorely needed. Given the lengthy, detailed description given by another boat that suggests just the opposite re: clearing in, your info could be helpful to many others.

Also, can you tell us how long one can keep the boat in Mexico without the importation process being required? The next time thru IM we'll be just passing thru enroute S and I surely don't want to bother with that nonsense. I'm hoping a week or two in Mexican waters without importation is acceptable; any thoughts?

Thanks!

Jack
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Old 19-01-2006, 06:59   #6
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Euro, There is a minimum time you can stay without the Importado but that is currently under change and we do not know what the new regulations will be. You can apply for it over the internet now. The only problem with sending info in to SSCA to be posted in the bulletin is that it won't make publication for 6 months and by then everything might change.
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Old 31-12-2008, 03:36   #7
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so i just fly the q flag when headin into port and contact the port captian on the vhf? awesome. also how long can i stay for? and is there a certain port i have to sail into? (first timer)
thank you
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Old 31-12-2008, 03:37   #8
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Also, im going to be visiting a friend in Playa Del Carmen, am i aloud to set anchor a little ways out and come in on a ding to where shes living?
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Old 31-12-2008, 05:32   #9
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Noonsite has info on ports of entry and clearance procedures.

Here's what they say about visiting other ports of call: "Once you have cleared into the country, it is no longer necessary to clear in and out with the port captain at each subsequent port, provided you log in with a local marina and the marina keeps a record of arrivals and departures."
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