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Old 04-11-2010, 06:03   #16
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To quote a C&I officer in Newark...
"We 'Love' to Bust and Deport people..."
and I was entering with a 90 day visa.... guess it musta been my Asian sounding surname....
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:15   #17
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I have crossed more borders than most people. A lot of them by sea. Generally speaking people are very friendly and accommodating. There is an international rule out there about being provided with a safe-haven, although I can easily believe that the good old US of A has decided against it.

In reality so long as you are nice and deferential, you can get what you need to make repairs in an emergency one way or another. Clearly you should not PLAN to stop somewhere for which you do not have the appropriate visa or passport, but if it's a question of getting slapped on the wrists by the authorities or sinking/starving/dying of thirst, I think it's an easy choice. If you do find yourself caught out, radio ahead and make your apologies in advance.
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Old 04-11-2010, 06:46   #18
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I can't imagine anyone would be stupid enough to do so, but it is nice to know there are laws out there that offer some protection to honest passage makers.
I really wouldn't bet anything on that. International law is really a misnomer - what it really is - is a temporary agreement amongst "sovereign nations" to "try" to get along in a reasonable, civil manner. "Sovereign" means what that nation does within its borders are not subject to outside rules short of war or a "bully pulpit" of international public relations or economic pressures.
- - So there are no "laws" out there protecting your honest passage making. There are customs and agreements that are generally followed with the knowledge that if they weren't then that nation's citizens would might be subject to increased hassles with another nation.
- - But push comes to shove, the local C/I official is the "junior god" and he knows it. They can be reasonable and just trying to do their job or if provoked by you or some other totally unrelated event can make your life a living hell. Been there, done that, got too many T-shirts on that subject.

- - Q-flagging or as otherwise known, "innocent passage" has also fallen to scourge of "national security in the name of terrorist protection." Currently, the individual nation must have internal laws authorizing the procedure - like the Bahamas - or you are sticking your boat's butt (and yours) out there to get slapped by the local officials ranging from a reprimand all the way up to confiscation and prison. Although in many places you can "buy" your way out of the predicament.
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Old 04-11-2010, 11:59   #19
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G'day, Mates. It has been my experience down here over the years that Customs & Immigration in New Zealand work to make sure these kind of situations are handled appropriately, in the 1st place, to make sure the vessel is seaworthy before putting it back to sea. With this vast ocean down here, they don't want to be organizing a search & rescue mission in the 2nd place. Cheers.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:51   #20
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Originally Posted by Geminidawn View Post
Okay say if I didn't have the appropriate visa for the country I'm now moored. I was sailing for the Yucatan and I had to pull in at Florida due to adverse weather conditions, I fly the Q-flag, how am I suppose to re-provision my boat and make whatever necessary repairs if I'm not allowed ashore?
You fly the Q flag, indicating to those around you that you have not cleared in; aka, you have not gone ashore or have no intention of going ashore. It has been flown in the past when mariners needed a safe haven from weather, needed a calmer spot in order to make repairs, or the crew needs a safe place to sleep or wait out the weather.

Most often, you enter the new anchorage flying the Q flag, which tells the officials that you have not cleared in. You gather up your papers and go ashore to properly enter the country, and after doing so, replace the Q flag with the courtesy flag of the country you're now living in. Now you can go shopping, pick up packages, and replenish.

Since most places that accept vessels have VHF, you can tell the officials that you're making repairs, waiting out weather, or need to sleep. Most of the officials I've talked with understand and will give you considerable leeway as long as you don't try to avoid the normal fees. I've seem boats fly the Q flag for several days while the weather offshore raged. The fact that no other vessels left port may have aided in understanding.

If you need parts or provisions, I don't know of any reason why you couldn't quietly and carefully chat up someone else in the anchorage to help. In many cases, I've had tenders come alongside as I'm settling in, to say hi and chat a bit.

However, the officials have to follow the rules, as confusing as they can seem to us. If your nationality requires additional documentation or specific paperwork, then getting in may be more difficult. In some cases, I've heard of folks either arranging for agents to get parts or provisions, leave port for a more acceptable location, or get someone in the anchorage to intercede in your behalf.
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Old 04-11-2010, 13:41   #21
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You fly the Q flag, indicating to those around you that you have not cleared in; aka, you have not gone ashore or have no intention of going ashore. It has been flown in the past when mariners needed a safe haven from weather, needed a calmer spot in order to make repairs, or the crew needs a safe place to sleep or wait out the weather.

Most often, you enter the new anchorage flying the Q flag, which tells the officials that you have not cleared in. You gather up your papers and go ashore to properly enter the country, and after doing so, replace the Q flag with the courtesy flag of the country you're now living in. Now you can go shopping, pick up packages, and replenish.

Since most places that accept vessels have VHF, you can tell the officials that you're making repairs, waiting out weather, or need to sleep. Most of the officials I've talked with understand and will give you considerable leeway as long as you don't try to avoid the normal fees. I've seem boats fly the Q flag for several days while the weather offshore raged. The fact that no other vessels left port may have aided in understanding.

If you need parts or provisions, I don't know of any reason why you couldn't quietly and carefully chat up someone else in the anchorage to help. In many cases, I've had tenders come alongside as I'm settling in, to say hi and chat a bit.

However, the officials have to follow the rules, as confusing as they can seem to us. If your nationality requires additional documentation or specific paperwork, then getting in may be more difficult. In some cases, I've heard of folks either arranging for agents to get parts or provisions, leave port for a more acceptable location, or get someone in the anchorage to intercede in your behalf.
Good clear explanation! Many thanks to all who contributed I started this thread pretty ignorant as to how the whole system works and now two pages in I have a fairly good idea thanks to CF, it's members and all those who shared their experiences and knowledge.
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Old 04-11-2010, 17:06   #22
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. . .
If you need parts or provisions, I don't know of any reason why you couldn't quietly and carefully chat up someone else in the anchorage to help. In many cases, I've had tenders come alongside as I'm settling in, to say hi and chat a bit. . .
This is where you can really get into a serious world of trouble. Should a local or official see "non-official" or boats not "officially approved" visiting your vessel while under a "Q" flag - guess what they will first think - drug runner! - - The world today is not your grandfather's world. Cruisers are prohibited from stopping or anchoring along long stretches of some island country's coastlines because of the drug interdiction efforts.
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Old 10-11-2010, 10:52   #23
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What about long term sailors who lost citizenship and pasport long ago?

I think here in canada I must come back at least once a year to keep my statue and my pasport is only valide 5 years... so lets say I voyage to Asia and hook there a few years 6-7?
those this mean I cant go anywhere agrownd??? what are the risk..boat siezure? jail? deportation?
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:22   #24
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What about long term sailors who lost citizenship and pasport long ago?

I think here in canada I must come back at least once a year to keep my statue and my pasport is only valide 5 years... so lets say I voyage to Asia and hook there a few years 6-7?
those this mean I cant go anywhere agrownd??? what are the risk..boat siezure? jail? deportation?
If you are a Canadian citizen you never lose it. Yes, passports expire but your citizenship is a birthright.
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:26   #25
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If you are a Canadian citizen you never lose it. Yes, passports expire but your citizenship is a birthright.
oh thanks!

but if my pasport is expiered in Asia can I still travel and make stops on my way back???
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:37   #26
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You don't lose citizenship unless you publicly renounce it through channels. However, if you have lost your passport or have let it expire, you become an undocumented alien in any country besides your own and how you are handled depends on the laws of the country you are in. Iran for instance would probably lock you away as a spy against the Islamic Republic; in some other more enlightened places you might simply be denied entry or asked to leave. If abroad and your passport is about to expire, you should contact the nearest Canadian consulate to obtain a new passport and travel documents.
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:42   #27
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oh thanks!

but if my pasport is expiered in Asia can I still travel and make stops on my way back???
You don't need to be in Canada to renew your passport. You can renew a passport at a Canadian Embassy. There are some countries that don't require a passport but if going that route you better be sure of your destinations. Some countries will require at least one blank page on your passport as well.
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Old 10-11-2010, 11:52   #28
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Some countries will even deny entry if your passport is due to expire soon after arrival, so you need to think ahead and make sure you keep everything up to date.
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Old 10-11-2010, 12:03   #29
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Once, while in Trinidad, I visited the US Embassy, in Port of Spain to obtain more pages for my passport. Several years later, on arrival to Trinidad, I was informed that my Passport was going to expire in less than the time allotted for a normal 90 day visa, when I explained that it was my intention to have the passport renewed, I was given a 15 day visa to allow me time to visit the US Embassy again, and then return to Immigration for a normal 90 visa.
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Old 10-11-2010, 12:21   #30
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so wherever thers a canadian embasy all is good?
thanks
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