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Old 20-11-2020, 18:21   #1
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US flag and Cuba

hi everyone ! I hold a european passport (Belgium) but my sailboat is registered in Delaware and docked all year in FL so i navigate under US flag. Can i anchorage in Cuban waters during my route Keys > Isla mujeres ?
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Old 20-11-2020, 18:29   #2
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Re: US flag and Cuba

I was researching this a few months ago and as far as I know Cuba is again off limits to all US travelers. I would assume that pertains to your vessel despite your EU passport. Check CIA.gov for more info. Given your unique situation I would take the extra step of checking with ports/consulates in any case; there may be a workaround (especially if you are just planning a fuel/water/rest).

I’m curious to see what others say.
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Old 21-11-2020, 14:20   #3
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Re: US flag and Cuba

Lots of info in waterway guide. We just bought this 2 weeks ago, so should be up to date.
Pertaining to usa flagged boat, this might help.
On facebook, cuba land and sea group. Has lots of info and support as wellClick image for larger version

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Old 21-11-2020, 16:38   #4
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Re: US flag and Cuba

Thanks Chris for digging up these useful infos ! you bought this guide 2 weeks ago ? do you know when it was edited, is it a 2020 edition ?
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Old 21-11-2020, 18:56   #5
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Re: US flag and Cuba

2019. Which I understand to be the newest edition.
The facebook group I mentioned is moderated by the coauthor of this guide. Addison chan.
Quote:
Originally Posted by XSPACE2 View Post
Thanks Chris for digging up these useful infos ! you bought this guide 2 weeks ago ? do you know when it was edited, is it a 2020 edition ?
And yes, just bought it. We are hoping to continue on from bahamas to cuba this year.
Luckily we are canadian and don't have the same restrictions going there
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Old 22-11-2020, 10:36   #6
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Re: US flag and Cuba

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Originally Posted by XSPACE2 View Post
hi everyone ! I hold a european passport (Belgium) but my sailboat is registered in Delaware and docked all year in FL so i navigate under US flag. Can i anchorage in Cuban waters during my route Keys > Isla mujeres ?
I thought a USA documented vessel had to be captain'd by a USA citizen, double check me on that.
As far as FL to Cuba I've been told no issue, knowing that the return trip to USA can't come from Cuba. And you'll likely be asked if you spent US $ in Cuba, you only spent Euros right?
Fair winds
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Old 22-11-2020, 10:38   #7
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Re: US flag and Cuba

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Originally Posted by yobird View Post
I thought a USA documented vessel had to be captain'd by a USA citizen, double check me on that.

Fair winds
That law was changed many years ago.
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Old 22-11-2020, 10:42   #8
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Re: US flag and Cuba

I do not know about Covid related restrictions.
As to USA (Delaware registr) boat there should be no problem.
I have spent around 3 weeks in Cuba on similarly registered boat. All three persons on board held non USA passports.
On our way from Dominican Republic to Cuba, we were boarded and inspested by the USA Coast Guard. They knew our destination to be Cuba. No word of warning or restriction.
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Old 22-11-2020, 10:44   #9
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Re: US flag and Cuba

We have been travelling to Cuba for more than 40 years. The Cuban people love visitors, especially American visitors. You may not be so wanted right now because of COVID-19. The Cubans have the pandemic under control in their country, so they may not want you to visit until the USA and Europe get it under control.
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Old 22-11-2020, 11:04   #10
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Re: US flag and Cuba

This seems odd. If you are USA citizen you national registration and flag should indeed be USA and you will be sailing under USA rules. If you are Belgium Then that is you flag country. I guess if you hold duel nationality you may have the option to choose but where the boat is kept is nothing to do with it.
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Old 22-11-2020, 11:21   #11
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Re: US flag and Cuba

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Originally Posted by roland stockham View Post
This seems odd. If you are USA citizen you national registration and flag should indeed be USA and you will be sailing under USA rules. If you are Belgium Then that is you flag country. I guess if you hold duel nationality you may have the option to choose but where the boat is kept is nothing to do with it.
Not exactly.
Thousands of boats are registered in countries that are not the countries of owner's residence.
Usually due to tax reasons, but not only.
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Old 22-11-2020, 12:10   #12
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Re: US flag and Cuba

If your boat is state registered you can fly any flag you want as a courtesy but this does not mean you are operating "under US flag." This term has a specific meaning under US and international law. If you are not a US citizen you cannot own a US Coast Guard documented vessel. I don't know about dual nationals.

Certain nations prohibit entry of vessels that are not fully documented to fly a specific national flag. Check before you plan to enter the territorial waters of any foreign country to verify that state registration meets the local requirement.
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Old 22-11-2020, 12:29   #13
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Re: US flag and Cuba

Hola, en Junio del año pasado navegué como tripulación de Key West a La Habana y luego a Isla Mujeres/Cancún.
Viajamos; el armador del barco, de USA y otro tripulante de California en un barco de bandera americana.
Yo tengo 2 ciudadanías, española y argentina.
No tuvimos problemas para ingresar a Cuba y nos quedamos como 10 días.
El problema que tienen los ciudadanos americanos es que NO pueden usar sus tarjetas de crédito/débito dentro del pais.
Hay que llevar si o si efectivo!
Amarramos en la Marina Hemingway, cara pero para lo que es Cuba se está muy bien.
Cuidado en México que es complicado los tramites de migración, ver por internet antes de viajar!!!!
Con el tema del Covid no se como estarán las cosas este año.
Saludos
Gerardo M. Genoud

Hello, in June of last year I sailed as a crew from Key West to La Havana and then to Isla Mujeres / Cancun:
We travel; the owner of the ship, from the USA and another crew member from California on an American flag ship.
I have 2 citizenships, Spanish and Argentine.
We had no problems entering Cuba and we stayed about 10 days.
The problem that American citizens have is that they CANNOT use their credit / debit cards within the country.
You have to bring yes or yes cash!
We moor in the Hemingway Marina, expensive but for what it is Cuba is very good.
Be careful in Mexico that migration procedures are complicated, check online before traveling!
With the Covid issue, I don't know how things will be this year.
Cheers
Gerardo M. Genoud




hi everyone ! I hold a european passport (Belgium) but my sailboat is registered in Delaware and docked all year in FL so i navigate under US flag. Can i anchorage in Cuban waters during my route Keys > Isla mujeres ?
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Old 22-11-2020, 13:05   #14
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Re: US flag and Cuba

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmschmidt View Post
If your boat is state registered you can fly any flag you want as a courtesy but this does not mean you are operating "under US flag." This term has a specific meaning under US and international law. If you are not a US citizen you cannot own a US Coast Guard documented vessel. I don't know about dual nationals.

Certain nations prohibit entry of vessels that are not fully documented to fly a specific national flag. Check before you plan to enter the territorial waters of any foreign country to verify that state registration meets the local requirement.
To restate what I have already written.
We sailed to Cuba with a boat registered in Delaware, not GG registration.
The boat flew an USA flag on its stern post, (not courtesy flag from a spreader) and neither the CG nor Cuban authorities had any issues with our visit.
The crew was not USA citizens. One of the crew (the skipper, not an USA citizen) owned the boat through a company based in Delaware.
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Old 22-11-2020, 14:34   #15
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Re: US flag and Cuba

[QUOTE=yobird;3279883]I thought a USA documented vessel had to be captain'd by a USA citizen, double check me on that.
As far as FL to Cuba I've been told no issue, knowing that the return trip to USA can't come from Cuba. And you'll likely be asked if you spent US $ in Cuba, you only spent Euros right?

To answer you : you need to be USA legal resident to register a boat...but in a few states you don't need to be US resident to be part of an American company ... so foreigners register their boat under a US company name ... and of course they are major shareholder of this company. it s a classic and legal way...you never noticed that there is a more Boats than inhabitants in Delaware, and that Bahamas and Panama seems to own all the cargoships of the world ?
About the US $ spending thanks for the tip.. yeah of course i only spent Euros
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