Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 04-03-2012, 16:31   #1
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
An Australian in the USA - How To Do It ?

Due to the AUD - USD conversion rate at the moment and the fact that many things seem very cheap in the US and nearby compared to Australia (boats, wages, fuel) I am considering mothballing my build, (I have anyway) partially cashing in my chips here and going there, buying a boat and cruising the Caribbean/South America/Mexico area for a few years.

If it all worked out well the plan would change.
If I had the right boat at the right price and like where I was at I would happily cut my losses on the boat in Oz and make the move more permanent but it would be dependent on several factors.

A few questions

It seems I can only be in the US for 90 days at a time, what then, do I do what we do in Asia and do a visa run (fly over border for a few days and back in for another 3 mths) ?

Once I have a boat up and running, is it really as easy as I imagine to do a slow loop from Miami down through the Islands to Venezuala or anywhere with cheap fuel, FILL TO BURSTING and drift back up and around?

The ability to fuel on the cheap will seriously dictate vessel type as there are many 55ft plus motoryachts (I consider I would need at least 55ft to compare in size to a restrained accom. 50ft cat) but unfortunately, most have sizable engines and thirst.

IF I can do that loop easily enough and get the cheap fuel to feed the thirst I would consider something along the lines of this
$139k 60ft De fever with twin Detroit 8V-71 (425hp each ?)

If cheap fuel isnt readily available, I would have to scale back to something more like this.

$129k 50ft Grand Banks with twin Ford Lehmans @ 120hp each

Ideally, this would be the vessel
$179k 54ft De Fever with twin cat D330T's (115hp each) but unless the price could be hammered down the $50k price difference between this and the first buys a lot of fuel.

Comments and thoughts?
__________________

__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 17:03   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 617
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

I think the visa waiver is for 30 days.
Getting a real visa takes more effort these days. Then you get the 90 days. Need to check validity and how many reentries.
My 25 years experience as an aussie traveling into and out of the states is always good. No matter what my status - "tourist" with many entries, green-card, citizen...
Would assume you would spend some time in Bahamas, or mexico before returning to the states, so if it is not too egregious these (post 911) days you would not have problems.
Sorry to hear you are spitting the dummy. I get it - Im only 4 months on this refit and i'm pretty fried.
__________________

__________________
AllezCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 17:22   #3
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AllezCat View Post
Sorry to hear you are spitting the dummy. I get it - Im only 4 months on this refit and i'm pretty fried.
Its not spitting the dummy or being fried, its the cost to complete and end value of finished product here.

Whats the point of being bled dry by $40 to $70 an hour labour hire plus material finishing a boat that is only worth half of what it may have been when I started, if I can find a buyer?

It makes more financial sense to put a halt to it now $70k in.

I would never have started building if boats were the price they are now, it makes more financial sense to just buy one, fully kitted and ready to go, the $70k I have spent here thus far is easily outweighed by the cheap purchase prices there.

Quote:
I think the visa waiver is for 30 days.
Getting a real visa takes more effort these days. Then you get the 90 days. Need to check validity and how many reentries.
I just spotted these

Quote:
Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA)

To travel to the United States of America for holiday or business, you will need a valid short travel entry permit, such as an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA). You can apply online for an ESTA through Migration Expert if you have a passport from a Visa Waiver Program (VWP) eligible country.

Valid for 2 years or life of passport***
Multiple Entry
Stay up to 3 months each visit
https://www.migrationexpert.com/esta...FQVNpgodO0evBA
__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 17:34   #4
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 19,365
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

I think it's a grand plan! Yes, the loop from the East coast is really pretty easy! Mostly daysails!
__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 17:45   #5
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2005
Boat: Outbound 44
Posts: 4,583
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Can't help you the USA visa stuff. It was only a few years ago I found out that we let Aussies in the country
Not sure where your pain threshold is for fuel costs. I suspect fuel is generally cheaper than what you are used to in Oz. If I did the math right, it seems like a liter is aud$1.5 making a gallon US$6.04. Fuel here in Panama is a US$4 to $4.50 a gallon. You won't be doing a lot of long runs to the southern Caribbean to get fuel. There are a fair number of weather related limiting factors. Number one of course is hurricane season. In non-hurricane season you have some pretty strong tradewinds. Meaning you won't want to be headed upwind Dec to April or May. And places that have subsidized fuel, like Venezuela, often change their rules as to when or if foreign boats can buy it.
One thing that would worry me about your plan is what will the AUD dollar do in the next 5 years?
__________________
Paul L
http://svjeorgia.blogspot.com
Paul L is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 18:22   #6
Registered User
 
stillbuilding's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Boat: Custom Freya 20m
Posts: 961
Re the Visa Waiver/ESTA thing I think this applies for fly in and out trips. If you plan longer or are departing/arriving by boat get the US 10 year visa - more useful for your plans. The ESTA thing has to be done each entry and is airline ticket only - bit of a pain and 15.00. Just pay for the bias up front while you are resident in Aus - who knows how long you will be Travelling.
__________________
stillbuilding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 19:02   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Mackay,QLD, Australia
Boat: planning a approx 45ft cat
Posts: 3,651
Images: 3
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Sorry to hear you are rethinking and mothballed your project. iIhad thought you were close to heading North to SE Asia.

Biggest issue I see is will be difficult to find a vessel in USA with as economical running costs as the cat you are building.

Certainly time can be saved and you can be cruising earlier. Tidy vessels you linked to.

Good luck with whatever you choose.
__________________
downunder is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 19:03   #8
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul L View Post
Not sure where your pain threshold is for fuel costs. I suspect fuel is generally cheaper than what you are used to in Oz. If I did the math right, it seems like a liter is aud$1.5 making a gallon US$6.04. Fuel here in Panama is a US$4 to $4.50 a gallon.
Not very high which is why in my own build I have 65hpx2
But if I was paying these prices I would be less concerned
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobconnie View Post
last yr we paid 22 cents a gal in Coloumbia. just my 2 cents Bob and Connie
Quote:
You won't be doing a lot of long runs to the southern Caribbean to get fuel.
I imagine I would be going down there and spending several mths in the area crossing borders for updated visa's as required.
In reality, I would probably never need to come back to the US if everything I needed was elsewhere and more affordable.
Quote:
There are a fair number of weather related limiting factors. Number one of course is hurricane season. In non-hurricane season you have some pretty strong tradewinds. Meaning you won't want to be headed upwind Dec to April or May.
So no different to where I am with Cyclones?
When the trades are on and you need to make windward miles, most mono's tend to motor like mad in the early am planning to be anchored by 10:00am before the wind gets to strong
And isnt there a version of Sabah is often referred to as "Land Below The Wind", because of its location just south of the typhoon-prone region around the Philippines. there?

Quote:
And places that have subsidized fuel, like Venezuela, often change their rules as to when or if foreign boats can buy it.
How often?
Quote:
One thing that would worry me about your plan is what will the AUD dollar do in the next 5 years?
There is that which is why I would be cashing in some of my chips here and buying US ones while they are 50% off
__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 19:15   #9
Registered User
 
cat man do's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Brisbane Australia [until the boats launched]
Boat: 50ft powercat, light,long and low powered
Posts: 4,409
Images: 36
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by downunder View Post
Sorry to hear you are rethinking and mothballed your project. iIhad thought you were close to heading North to SE Asia.
It'll have to be bare bones if I do, meaning :
Bare minimum of structural furniture
machine sanded fairing job (I'm not boarding and I'm not paying Oz wages to get it done)
Whatever paintjob I can get out on pulling the trigger myself
No pretty finish inside at all
Very basic electrical
Very basic everything

Thats still 30k and another year of hard labour to get to that stage and will the US window of cheap boats still be available then?
__________________
"Money can't buy you happiness but it can buy you a yacht large enough to pull up right alongside it"...............David Lee Roth
Long Distance Motorboat Cruising It Is Possible on a Small Budget
cat man do is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 19:24   #10
Registered User
 
stillbuilding's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Boat: Custom Freya 20m
Posts: 961
Quote:
Originally Posted by cat man do
It'll have to be bare bones if I do, meaning :
Bare minimum of structural furniture
machine sanded fairing job (I'm not boarding and I'm not paying Oz wages to get it done)
Whatever paintjob I can get out on pulling the trigger myself
No pretty finish inside at all
Very basic electrical
Very basic everything

Thats still 30k and another year of hard labour to get to that stage and will the US window of cheap boats still be available then?
Just put it in the water and go asap.
Get it finished in Asia - lots of choices that will be better economically than doing the US thing maybe.

Would not sweat the US making a fast recovery - be years away yet.
__________________
stillbuilding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 20:24   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Narragansett Bay
Boat: Able 50
Posts: 3,057
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

Apply for a US Visa at your local consulate. Mail application is not possible. You should be able to get 6 months.
__________________
savoir is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-03-2012, 22:00   #12
Moderator
 
Boracay's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Pelican Bay, Great Sandy National Park
Boat: Steel Roberts Offshore 44
Posts: 5,175
Images: 18
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it?

I'm feeling a little bit like you. A steel boat is never finished!

I've looked with envy at those Stateside prices. When it all gets too much I dream of buying an ex charter Beneteau 423 or 473 and doing what you suggest.

More rational analysis suggests that even a good ex charter boat is going to need some $50k in upgrades. Reading between the lines on those nice looking motoryachts and find a few blogs of those that have "been there, done that" it would seem that many have structural deterioration and those that have been properly fixed bring in a premium price.

After a big cat I think that you'd find they roll better than a drunken sailor, and drink more too.

My reality is that Boracay should be fine for short hops up the coast. If I ever want to go past Cairns I'd be very tempted to hire some professional help to get to Darwin, then again to Bali.

Bali (and Indonesia) doesn't look like a bad place to be stuck. Just have to go with Indo time.
__________________
Rust never sleeps
Boracay Blog.
Boracay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 00:09   #13
Registered User
 
stillbuilding's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Boat: Custom Freya 20m
Posts: 961
Do the minimum necessary to be able to motor safely to Indonesia (sleep on the floor no problem) and get it to loads of places where labour is cheap, they want your work. Can fly back and forth from work as required so you get useful asian holidays too. Could even work it as a business and write off the expenses. Will be much cheaper than buying in the US and more fun.
__________________
stillbuilding is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 01:24   #14
Registered User
 
Dreadnaught's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Sydney, Australia
Boat: Catalina Morgan 440
Posts: 7
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it ?

Hi Cat Man Do. This is my Aussie/USA experience. I dreamed of a Catalina Morgan 440 since they first hit the market in 2005. It was priced way out of my league. Then the GFC. I watched over $100.00 come off the price and the price I paid for my 2007 CM440 in St. Petersburg Florida was 200,000 cheaper than a new one in Aussie. I saved $13,000.00 on the exchange rate.

Why rush off the the Caribbean/Mexica etc. We find the Intracoastal Waterway the most fascinating of experiences! An inland waterway up the historic, beautiful east coast of the US of A. My husband and I are just loving the opportunity of exploring this amazing country. So far we have sailed the yacht from St. Pete's to the Florida Keys up the coast and into Georgia. We are about to take her through Georgia, South and North Carolina then return home for a couple of months. Back in August, Sept and Oct for the Chesapeake and hopefully New York. I have a dream of sitting on our yacht and looking across the Hudson and Manhattan at the Statute of Liberty. In November we leave, (with everyone else it seems from the east coast), with our already booked skipper for the BVI's Carribbean.

The ESTA is for three years and is for up to 90 days. As we don't want to leave on the yacht, but use it about six months a year this suits us fine. Frequently flyer points have resulted in us in having free flights each from Sydney all the way to Savannah Georgia.

Everything, EVERYTHING (except marina transient berth fees) is cheaper in the states. There are a few reasons that I won't bore you with (i.e. tax systems, market forces etc) but we find it cheaper to live on our yacht there than at home in Sydney. We have had a lot of service done of the yacht. The workmanship is of the highest quality and guaranteed and reliable.

I can't talk about fuel prices for you, I'm a sailer but we are beside ourselves with excitement of where our life has taken us and are so glad we took the risk to buy in the States and 'live the dream'.

Dreadnaught.
__________________
'...Beware of the Sea! If thou hearest the cry of the gull on the shore, Thy heart shall then rest in the forest no more.' Galadriel. LOTR.
Dreadnaught is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 02:26   #15
Registered User
 
Katiusha's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 800
Re: An Australian in the USA - How to do it ?

Regarding fuel: don't forget that after checking out of a Caribbean island, you can most likely buy fuel at that island tax-free - just have to enquire with marina/fuel dock beforehand.

Regarding outfitting: given a choice between US and a Caribbean island, we almost always choose Sint Maarten for DYI work (beautiful place, fully stocked and cheap chandleries), and US for more extensive refits. But if you want to return to US from Caribbean, you have to take into account cost to travel back there from whereever you are. In a lot of cases it's not worth it (cheaper price of equipment in US + travel costs > price of equipment in Sint Maarten or shipping US equipment to the islands).
__________________

__________________
Katiusha is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
Australia

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Flags - What Do You Fly ? DDabs Seamanship & Boat Handling 73 10-04-2012 18:10
For Sale: The Gentlemans Guide to Passages South woodymr Classifieds Archive 4 16-03-2012 18:10
The Cons of Owning a Catamaran Notpopeye Multihull Sailboats 326 14-03-2012 08:51
How Do You Pronounce " Dorade " steve77 Deck hardware: Rigging, Sails & Hoisting 55 14-03-2012 08:12



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 00:29.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.