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Old 20-07-2019, 16:50   #1
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Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

I'm a US citizen with a boat documented with the USCG. I know my boat can stay in EU for up to 6 months. But what about me? How can I go around the 90 days limitation for tourists?
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Old 20-07-2019, 18:33   #2
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

Very frequent question. Search the forum using the term Schengen and you will find several long, detailed discussions on the issue.


Short answer, leave Schengen for 90 days. Some options are UK, Ireland, Gibraltar, North Africa, Turkey
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Old 21-07-2019, 01:26   #3
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

Thanks,

do you mean that I should be out of a Shengen country for the whole 90 days before I can go back? Because that would not be an option for me. The only option would be going to Tunisia for a few days, but then I'd like to sail back to Italy.

Is here any US citizen who has first hand experience with this problem?
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Old 21-07-2019, 02:55   #4
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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Thanks,

do you mean that I should be out of a Shengen country for the whole 90 days before I can go back? Because that would not be an option for me. The only option would be going to Tunisia for a few days, but then I'd like to sail back to Italy.

Is here any US citizen who has first hand experience with this problem?
Yes, several of us. We are from Texas, are US citizens and have a USCG registered boat. You may not like the answer, but as a US citizen you are allowed to be in the Schengen area for 90 days out of any 180 day period. For the western Med, it gives you Morocco or Gibraltar as places to get out of the Schengen zone. Now if you are talking about Italy and Tunisia, then you also have the choices of Turkey, Montenegro, Albania and Croatia. If you are in that area of the Med, you can bounce back and forth from Italy, Montenegro and Croatia and be quite happy.

You need to do some reading and there have been a lot of posts on this forum. But forget about going to Tunisia for a week or so to "reset the clock". It doesn't work that way.

Now, for the boat, I don't know where you got six months from. Your vessel can be in the Eurozone for 18 months before VAT is due. Again, do some reading on this. You can reset the clock (yes, this is for the boat, not for Schengen) by going to Morocco, Tunisia, Montenegro, Albania, etc. This is usually much less restrictive for cruisers than the Schengen laws.

Good luck. It is a hassle, but there is so much to see in Europe. We have been here four years, but we were able to obtain a Type D visa for Italy.

Cheers!

Steve
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Old 21-07-2019, 04:15   #5
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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I'm a US citizen with a boat documented with the USCG. I know my boat can stay in EU for up to 6 months. But what about me? How can I go around the 90 days limitation for tourists?
Visa (applies to you as a person): Basically if on any day you look back at the last 180 days...if more than 90 are in the Schengen, you are in violation.
- Doesn't matter how many times you come and go.
- Key point: If you arrive and are stamped in at 11:59pm, that counts as a full day.
- Crossing to a Non-Schengen for a day does not reset the clock.

Boat:
- If you pay VAT, it can stay forever but that is upwards of 20% of the boat value, so worth avoiding if possible. But otherwise, very simple.
- You can temporarily import without paying VAT, up to 18 months.
- Put the boat in bond while not there and you can extend to 24 months.
- A day outside the EU Customs area (not schengen area), and the clock resets.
- Only applies to NON-RESIDENTS. If you manage to get a long term visa and that makes you a resident, you owe VAT immediately upon entry (though there are some exemptions for personal goods that may apply)...but getting a long term visa for a typical casual cruiser isn't easy. Usually, you need a job or get dual citizenship somehow.
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Old 21-07-2019, 04:27   #6
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

Life in much simpler for you than most of the info that will be repeated on this forum would indicate. The boat is 18 months in the vat region, then out for an instant just long enough to get documentation of exit, then back in for 18 months easy, peasy... just takes planning.

For US citizens regarding Schengen, it can be just as simple. Croatia, Albania, Tunisia, Israel, etc are not part of Schengen, and now we’re hearing there are many other countries which will let US citizens stay longer. France, UK, Italy, Hungary, Poland just to name a few.

With some careful planning, you and your boat can legally remain in the Med indefinitely without paying VAT or overstaying a US visa.
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:08   #7
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

HI B4A,


Kenomac has been cruising Europe for years, has long term, first hand knowledge and well understands the situation.


I would be interested in the latest positions from France, Italy, etc on long term stay. I researched several countries for this in the past and several did have programs for long stay visas above the Schengen 90 day limits but the paperwork and conditions the applicant had to meet was usually onerous. One requirement most had was to provide and address where you would live for the time you would be in the country, tricky for someone cruising on a boat. Most had requirements for you to prove you are financially able to support yourself while there. I recall one issue reported that you should spend your Schengen 90 days in other countries and then go to the country where you have the long stay visa, otherwise an official in another country could say you had used up your 90 days in the long stay country and count you as in violation.


Ken, any updates or changes on any of this?
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:20   #8
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

Thank you all for your help.

My cruising plans do not allow me to go as far as Turkey or Montenegro. I want to stay in West Med.

Another question:

I do have double citizenship, US and Italian: Can I check in with my Italian passport in Lagos (Portugal) on a USCG documented boat without being subject to VAT? And then cruising the Med for 18 months?
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:27   #9
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Schengen - longer say using bilateral agreements

This was recently posted to this forum.
http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...tc-220911.html
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:33   #10
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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HI B4A,


Kenomac has been cruising Europe for years, has long term, first hand knowledge and well understands the situation.


I would be interested in the latest positions from France, Italy, etc on long term stay. I researched several countries for this in the past and several did have programs for long stay visas above the Schengen 90 day limits but the paperwork and conditions the applicant had to meet was usually onerous. One requirement most had was to provide and address where you would live for the time you would be in the country, tricky for someone cruising on a boat. Most had requirements for you to prove you are financially able to support yourself while there. I recall one issue reported that you should spend your Schengen 90 days in other countries and then go to the country where you have the long stay visa, otherwise an official in another country could say you had used up your 90 days in the long stay country and count you as in violation.


Ken, any updates or changes on any of this?
Here’s a recent thread on the subject: http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...tc-220911.html
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:36   #11
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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Originally Posted by B4A View Post
Thank you all for your help.

My cruising plans do not allow me to go as far as Turkey or Montenegro. I want to stay in West Med.

Another question:

I do have double citizenship, US and Italian: Can I check in with my Italian passport in Lagos (Portugal) on a USCG documented boat without being subject to VAT? And then cruising the Med for 18 months?
VAT is based on residence, your dual citizenship can easily solve the Schengen issue by obtaining two passports. I have two, one Canadian and one USA.
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:44   #12
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VAT is based on residence, your dual citizenship can easily solve the Schengen issue by obtaining two passports. I have two, one Canadian and one USA.
I think you will find if he enters on the Italian passport he will become liable for VAT..
However he could avoid it by taking the route of many Greeks, Turks and others by registering it as a Delaware LLC boat, still liable to the 18mth rule but no Schengen issues with the Italian passport.. and I would start with that in the Azores unless planning a non stop crossing.
Others may know better.
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Old 21-07-2019, 05:48   #13
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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I think you will find if he enters on the Italian passport he will become liable for VAT..
However he could avoid it by taking the route of many Greeks, Turks and others by registering it as a Delaware LLC boat, still liable to the 18mth rule but no Schengen issues with the Italian passport.. and I would start with that in the Azores unless planning a non stop crossing.
Others may know better.
Ok then, he better check. On another note, everything is computerized in each country, and it’s easy for any official to check staus of immigration and VAT, and they have been checking. Best to have your ducks in order.
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Old 21-07-2019, 10:53   #14
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

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Originally Posted by B4A View Post
Thank you all for your help.

My cruising plans do not allow me to go as far as Turkey or Montenegro. I want to stay in West Med.

Another question:

I do have double citizenship, US and Italian: Can I check in with my Italian passport in Lagos (Portugal) on a USCG documented boat without being subject to VAT? And then cruising the Med for 18 months?
Your Italian passport means you are liable for full VAT as soon as you enter the EU zone. There's no way around that as it is based on citizenship not residence. As an Italian passport holder you are an Italian citizen. Citizenship comes with responsibilities.

However by using your Italian passport not your US one that does get you round the Schengen problem immediately as it no longer applies to you. However if anyone else in the family does not have an EU second citizenship then you are still limited to 90 days in any rolling 180 day period. Even the long stay visa's some have mentioned will NOT get you out of that as these are not full Schengen visas but long stay visas for that country alone.
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Old 21-07-2019, 14:21   #15
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Re: Cruising West Med with USA passport for 6 months

Simple procedure (having just done it) ...


1. Search Schengen area and learn which countries are involved (+ rules etc).
2. If you have a passport from one of them, use it as you can travel freely in any & all of those countries, indefinitely.
3. If not, then plan on staying only 3 months, at any time, anywhere in Europe ... the rule is 90 days in and 90 days out (of all the countries in the Schengen area). A day out in another country (say Turkey) does not allow you to return and the 90 day count to start again.
4. To stay longer, you will need a visa. One for 12 months can be applied for (retirement Visa usually the easiest), but you cannot work. You will need to prove things like ... your health won't burden their health systems, clean police record and your ability to support yourself financially (somewhere around 2k Euro per month).

Your vessel is another question!

Good luck ...
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