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Old 24-01-2018, 09:43   #31
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Dockhead-

We're US citizens on a US vessel looking to do a season in Norway. Our current plan is:

-Azores in June
-Ireland by July.
-We'll spend our 90days in Ireland then jump over to the UK in October.
-In mid December we'll fly to Germany to visit friends then back to the UK mid January. (Hopefully reset our 6 months in UK).
-Norway in May

Unfortunately, that makes 7 months in the UK if we can't reset out 6 month by leaving for Germany midway through. But, how enforced is the 180 days out of 365 issue? Will we have a problem no matter what?

Thanks,

Matt
When you talk about enforcement, it's always pure speculation, and it's hard to know what the risks are. Can't you go somewhere else for a month? Ireland? Turkey? Back to the U.S.?

If you do decide to risk it -- I am not aware of ANY efforts of enforcement in the UK as long as you come and go regularly enough to be seen not to be settling down. Every time you cross the border, you get another 6 months. I've been doing this for 20 years, and no one has ever counted up my days in the UK. In fact, for the last few years I don't even talk to border guards -- I have a card which lets me go through the UK citizens' line and use the automatic machines.

I suppose you wouldn't be likely to have a problem, but whenever you violate any such rule, you are taking a risk which is hard to evaluate.
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Old 24-01-2018, 09:56   #32
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

That's good enough for us at this point.

Our issue is our cat. We've found someone to watch her when we leave for the month in Germany, but any more is asking too much of a kind stranger. A stupid issue to have, but one that we are not going to change (my wife would rather see me go).

We've found that for importing a pet to the UK, we have to hit Ireland first before we cross over the first time. We're still not sure what we'll do coming back from Norway, but we may have to ship her separately and pick her back up once we've sailed back to the UK.

Thanks for the info,

Matt
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Old 24-01-2018, 10:05   #33
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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That's good enough for us at this point.

Our issue is our cat. We've found someone to watch her when we leave for the month in Germany, but any more is asking too much of a kind stranger. A stupid issue to have, but one that we are not going to change (my wife would rather see me go).

We've found that for importing a pet to the UK, we have to hit Ireland first before we cross over the first time. We're still not sure what we'll do coming back from Norway, but we may have to ship her separately and pick her back up once we've sailed back to the UK.

Thanks for the info,

Matt
Note that you can't bring pets into the UK on a boat. There is a special procedure -- make sure you check it out carefully.

You can travel by air in Europe with a cat without too much trouble (expense is a different question ), but you will need the pet passport and follow all the rules. I believe you have to deworm them during a precise time window before departure, for example.
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Old 24-01-2018, 10:32   #34
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Altogether, EU citizenship is extremely desirable, however, you do lose the right to sail in EU waters with a non-VAT paid boat.
No, you can sail in EU waters with a non-VAT paid boat as a EU citizen. Just not as a EU resident.
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Old 24-01-2018, 10:45   #35
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

Per the RYA and a couple we've been in talks with that just arrived in the UK in Oct....

"It is not permitted to bring pets into the UK by private boat or plane (unless you are arriving from Ireland). The current regulations have been in force since 1 January 2012.

It's also on the UK customs site.

Matt
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Old 24-01-2018, 10:54   #36
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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No, you can sail in EU waters with a non-VAT paid boat as a EU citizen. Just not as a EU resident.
Thanks for the correction
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Old 24-01-2018, 11:27   #37
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

"The bilateral treaty with France means that time in other Schengen countries does not count against you in France, but time in France DOES count against you in other Schengen countries -- get it?"
It is really no different in the US. We have 50 sovereign states, each with their own State rules. France, Italy, Germany, are all States, even if "nation state" is more accurate.
And just as the US States are bound by our Federal law (the US is a Republic, although it was originally a Confederation) the EU States are bound by their "supranational" law, in this case the international Schengen Treaty that supersedes any local States.

While "oops" and other schemes might have worked in the 60's, these days everyone is all upset about terrorism and border control and increasingly about playing tit-for-tat with everyone else. "Ooops" might still get the OP placed on a flight back to the US or another non-Schengen country, denied return access, and racking up long term marina bills and other issues. These days? Who can afford to roll the dice?
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Old 25-01-2018, 18:25   #38
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

Quote:
Originally Posted by funjohnson View Post
Dockhead-

We're US citizens on a US vessel looking to do a season in Norway. Our current plan is:

-Azores in June
-Ireland by July.
-We'll spend our 90days in Ireland then jump over to the UK in October.
-In mid December we'll fly to Germany to visit friends then back to the UK mid January. (Hopefully reset our 6 months in UK).
-Norway in May

Unfortunately, that makes 7 months in the UK if we can't reset out 6 month by leaving for Germany midway through. But, how enforced is the 180 days out of 365 issue? Will we have a problem no matter what?

Edit: Next issue.... after our 90 days in Norway, we had planned on sailing down to Scotland, with a quick jump to Ireland for another 90days... back to UK and start the process again for another season in the Baltic.

Thanks,

Matt
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Old 26-01-2018, 05:00   #39
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Originally Posted by K_V_B View Post
No, you can sail in EU waters with a non-VAT paid boat as a EU citizen. Just not as a EU resident.
The problem is spend too much time in an area and suddenly they decide you are a resident and it's not just VAT that comes due.

If they pull your passport and you spent the last 2 years inside the EU, it's going to be a tough sell claiming residency somewhere else.
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Old 28-01-2018, 00:25   #40
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
It's true that there is a bilateral treaty with France, but spending time there will NOT reset any clock! Unlike the case with the 18-month temporary import, no clocks get reset, ever, with Schengen time. It's always 90 of 180; just that France counts only time you spend there.

The bilateral treaty with France means that time in other Schengen countries does not count against you in France, but time in France DOES count against you in other Schengen countries -- get it?

If you spend 90 days in the Netherlands, then go to France, you get another 90 days. But NOT vice versa!

As others have said, the general principle is 90 days collectively in any and all Schengen countries out of any given 180 period is all that is allowed. Working the bilateral treaties is tricky and can be dangerous, as not all border officials are well informed.

The better solution is to just stay out of Schengen for 90 out of 180. The UK is not in Schengen, nor is Turkey.

Alternatively, a residence permit, which is what I do. They are not easy to acquire, though. And even a residence permit does not legally entitle you to roam the Schengen zone at will -- you are still allowed only 90 out of 180 in other Schengen countries, other than the one which issued the permit. Because of open borders, this is usually hard to enforce, but you had better not get caught living for a year in Italy with a Greek residence permit, for example.

Schengen is a b***h, I'm afraid. EU citizenship is the only total solution.

Funnily enough, if you have a bit of money, citizenship is actually easier to acquire than a residence permit. See: https://www.quora.com/Which-EU-count...p-requirements. If the linked article is correct, it is possible to acquire Bulgarian citizenship with only €195 000 investment and demonstrating €1 million net assets. It takes a year.

EU citizenship also gives you the right to a Blue Card, so your health care is taken care of. Altogether, EU citizenship is extremely desirable, however, you do lose the right to sail in EU waters with a non-VAT paid boat.


Dockhead,

Thank you for the detailed explanation. I now realize that a French visa will likely do us no good. We can't wait the 6 months. We have hard dates of arrival via Rome for one night on to Greece where the boat waits now and a date of November 25th or so from Las Palmas with ARC to St. Lucia. Unfortunately, more than 90, less than 180 and the last 2-3 weeks needs to be in the canaries for prep and take off with the ARC. Going back to France for that extra 90 doesn't help us, it appears, whether we can get the visa or not, or even a visa extension had we needed it. All of this being said, what would you do?
We are taking our 2 boys on a historical trip through the european countries of Italy, France and Spain, also to London. Yes, we can stay in Gibraltar if need be and visit London for a time (as the dollar sinks, so does our budget, btw. Also great concern about the costs to stay along Italy and France especially from what I am hearing...it is going to be a must to find some sort of less expensive places--100 euro a night is going to be too much. Should we sell the boat now?? :banged: )
Heading to Croatia does not work out time wise. Morocco perhaps, as long as our insurance continues to cover there (Pentaneus) Either way, I am wondering if we are at 90 near it or just over if Canaries check in would deny us a trip back with papers to prove we have paid for the ARC, first ocean crossing and that we cannot go this one alone. We will be looking for 2 crew as well to join (who have experience.)
I've been looking into visas for Spain for this very purpose. I can't find a way yet. I want to tell them it is a lot to get from far south in Greece all the way to Spain at the end in the 90/180, please can we have a visa if only to be in the canaries to plan to leave!! So stay longer outside? We miss the ARC...We have children entering 5th and 7th grade, homeschooling as we go, and that is a schedule as well as we are delivering our own boat back to the US.

SO, what would you do? I'm not sure what I am concerned about more---the nutty official I might run into who boots us out of europe without our boat, etc. or my poor husband pulling his hair out stressed the entire time without a backup plan? We've talked of and dreamed of doing this very trip with children before they were even born (really, since the 80's for both us!) and feel so blessed to be on our way :-). There must be a way to work with this catch 22 to turn it into something other than such.

I am so thankful to be on this forum with all of you and so humbled by your knowledge and experience--I've learned so much reading your posts and feel like I am getting to know quite a handful of you :-). I have to keep reminding myself what one man (or of course woman) can do, so can another or sometimes I might crawl under a rock at the thought of what experience we could still use before heading over!

Look forward to hearing your thoughts!

:-) Andrea
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Old 28-01-2018, 01:01   #41
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Originally Posted by valhalla360 View Post
The problem is spend too much time in an area and suddenly they decide you are a resident and it's not just VAT that comes due.



If they pull your passport and you spent the last 2 years inside the EU, it's going to be a tough sell claiming residency somewhere else.


They will not be able to see from my passport how much time I spent in the EU. So the only thing I would need to watch out for is not spend to much time in the same harbour.
Claiming residence is rather straightforward. I am resident in the town I “deposed my papers” as we call it here. In Switzerland you can’t even have your official residence on a boat...
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Old 28-01-2018, 02:13   #42
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Heading to Croatia does not work out time wise.

That’s a pity. Croatia has a lot to offer. Especially if you want to take your boys on a culture and history trip. The place is steeped in history.
Everyone I know who’s been to Croatia said “why didn’t I discover this earlier”.
And you can stop your Schengen clock there.
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Old 28-01-2018, 03:05   #43
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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They will not be able to see from my passport how much time I spent in the EU. So the only thing I would need to watch out for is not spend to much time in the same harbour.
Claiming residence is rather straightforward. I am resident in the town I “deposed my papers” as we call it here. In Switzerland you can’t even have your official residence on a boat...
Assuming you enter legally and have your passport checked, they certainly can tell. Even if they don't physically stamp your passport, they will have it electronically. The guy at the port may have to go back to the office and pull up the electronic records but there is record tied to your passport.

As long as nothing goes wrong: yeah, they will accept the address you put down on the form but if you claim non-resident status to avoid VAT and you have been in the Schengen for 2-3 years straight, at best you will have to do some fast talking if someone checks. You might not be able to claim residence on a boat but I'll bet they won't accept that you aren't a non-EU resident either. At best you have a messy situation and likely they will ask for the VAT immediately and let the courts sort it out later.

Again, as long as you keep on the move and don't stir anything up, odds are you fly under the radar but if you stay somewhere for months or are involved (even innocently) in something shady, it can turn into a messy situation.

They probably wouldn't prosecute unless they were just looking for an excuse or otherwise believe it was intentional but this sounds an awful lot like tax evasion. (FYI: Al Capon never got caught for bootlegging, murder or a dozen other types of crime. It was tax evasion that finally used to lock him up.)
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Old 28-01-2018, 04:53   #44
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Okay.. here's a suggestion.. bearing in mind I do not know your finances nor your family situation.. but its something I would consider in your situation.
Husband and wife fly to boat (Kids stay with parents/in-laws) taking as much of what they want for the boat.. arranging flight out to Greece and return flight from Madrid.
Sail the boat from Greece to Almerimar, Spain.. the cheapest marina in the Med but safe and with all marine services.. take the route S off Sicily across to Sardinia, Ballearics and then the mainland down to Almerimar.. can be done comfortably in a month.. leave her there and fly home.. stay a while..
Fly back with kids into London and do the Historic UK bit then get the train to Paris.. do the French bit, catch the train to Madrid.. do the Spanish bit.. stay in pensions which are low cost guest house's as opposed to hotels and are good, clean cheap places to sleep in, popular with locals and used by many for back packing style holidays by people of all ages.. hotels are for poseurs with dosh..
A month should be more than enough for this.. not counting UK time as the Schengen starts at Ashford UK when you enter French jurisdiction..arrive at boat with 4 weeks to spare Schengen time.
Sail for Gibraltar.. 30hrs away and take a berth there.. its just a bit dearer than Almerimar.. this leaves you a month or just under of Schengen time so if you wished you could either kill time wasting a week of Schengen driving up to the white villages in the foothills of the Sierras, do ferry trips to
Tangiers, take the kids on tours of the rock and stocking up the boat with luxury goods in the good supermarkets there.. be warned the prices are nearly on a par with the UK.
Fresh produce and Parma hams just before you sail I would suggest a day trip across to La Linea for those..
Then you can head for the Canaries with 3 weeks for your fitting out.
Realistically you could do all this in Gib and time your arrival for just before your registration date close's..
Train rides can be bought fairly cheaply as family package deals with multiple destinations.. just need your timetable for the 'tour' worked out.
Trains are clean, fast and reliable.. put the UK trains services to shame in every way.
For the UK a hire car is likely cheaper if you want to tour the country.. bed and breakfast is everywhere and varies from excellent to rat holes.
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Old 28-01-2018, 06:09   #45
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Re: Long stay visa help? Spain? France?

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Originally Posted by fieldtrip400 View Post
Dockhead,

Thank you for the detailed explanation. I now realize that a French visa will likely do us no good. We can't wait the 6 months. We have hard dates of arrival via Rome for one night on to Greece where the boat waits now and a date of November 25th or so from Las Palmas with ARC to St. Lucia. Unfortunately, more than 90, less than 180 and the last 2-3 weeks needs to be in the canaries for prep and take off with the ARC. Going back to France for that extra 90 doesn't help us, it appears, whether we can get the visa or not, or even a visa extension had we needed it. All of this being said, what would you do?
We are taking our 2 boys on a historical trip through the european countries of Italy, France and Spain, also to London. Yes, we can stay in Gibraltar if need be and visit London for a time (as the dollar sinks, so does our budget, btw. Also great concern about the costs to stay along Italy and France especially from what I am hearing...it is going to be a must to find some sort of less expensive places--100 euro a night is going to be too much. Should we sell the boat now?? :banged: )
Heading to Croatia does not work out time wise. Morocco perhaps, as long as our insurance continues to cover there (Pentaneus) Either way, I am wondering if we are at 90 near it or just over if Canaries check in would deny us a trip back with papers to prove we have paid for the ARC, first ocean crossing and that we cannot go this one alone. We will be looking for 2 crew as well to join (who have experience.)
I've been looking into visas for Spain for this very purpose. I can't find a way yet. I want to tell them it is a lot to get from far south in Greece all the way to Spain at the end in the 90/180, please can we have a visa if only to be in the canaries to plan to leave!! So stay longer outside? We miss the ARC...We have children entering 5th and 7th grade, homeschooling as we go, and that is a schedule as well as we are delivering our own boat back to the US.

SO, what would you do? I'm not sure what I am concerned about more---the nutty official I might run into who boots us out of europe without our boat, etc. or my poor husband pulling his hair out stressed the entire time without a backup plan? We've talked of and dreamed of doing this very trip with children before they were even born (really, since the 80's for both us!) and feel so blessed to be on our way :-). There must be a way to work with this catch 22 to turn it into something other than such.

I am so thankful to be on this forum with all of you and so humbled by your knowledge and experience--I've learned so much reading your posts and feel like I am getting to know quite a handful of you :-). I have to keep reminding myself what one man (or of course woman) can do, so can another or sometimes I might crawl under a rock at the thought of what experience we could still use before heading over!

Look forward to hearing your thoughts!

:-) Andrea
Don't despair --

The whole Southern shore of the Med is not EU and not Schengen. Not all of those countries are safe -- you'll have to do your own research -- but at least Morocco is, and that is a fabulous country worth as much time as you can spend. Tunisia is also interesting, but I'm not sure it's safe -- you'll have to check.

All you have to do is spend enough time in one or another of those countries, plus Gib if you like (but not much to do there; Morocco is MUCH more interesting), in order to stay within your Schengen limits.

I think that's the only way you'll be able to stay legal -- you COULD work the French bilateral treaty -- the French won't count your time in Italy -- but then you have to end up in the Canaries, and the Spanish WILL count all your time in France against you.


I will say again that I would not advise cheating. There are some on here who have been getting away with it, and the Italians and French are famously relaxed about it, but if you do get caught, they will throw you out, fine you, and you'll be banned from entering Europe for some time. I wouldn't risk it.

Checking you, contrary to what some on here have posted, is simplicity itself -- they just look at the stamps in your passports and add up the days. If you're missing a stamp, they will presume you were in Schengen and whack you. Be careful, by the way, to ALWAYS get and exit stamp when you leave. It means you have to be sure to leave from a port of entry and you may have to go to a lot of trouble to find an official with a stamp, but not doing so can really get you in trouble.
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