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Old 02-12-2019, 21:40   #1
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Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Hello Sailors.

This may be a long shot and not sure it can be answered that easy.

I'm thinking to buy a yacht either in Europe or New Zealand/ Australia.

Having tried previously to get a tourist visa for the EU( Schengen) seems to be a real headache and paper war. My GF( Thai national) got denied twice for Spain due to fake agents and not enough paperwork.

I wanted to ask if I'm going to buy a yacht and have my GF ( Thai) coming on board for cruising and live with me on board once purchased a vessel, what to consider and look for.

Did anyone have similar circumstances especially with Thai nationals and what was your experiences in doing so?

I understand I still have to apply for her visa, where ever I purchase the yacht, but will it be easier for her to be listed as "crew member" to get a transit visa to the yacht.

Any feedback or leads is much appreciated and thanks for reading.
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Old 03-12-2019, 01:16   #2
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

I'm married to a filipina and have circumnavigated, she is now half way around. Should be similar for Thai. She has lived aboard for seven years. Consider purchasing a boat in Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, or one of the other surrounding countries and cross Indian Ocean to South Africa. Wasn't too difficult for visas that route. Langkawi usually has several good boats for sale. You might cruise SE Asia for a year or two to get use to the boat.
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Old 03-12-2019, 01:37   #3
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Hello

Are you European or American?

If you are European, you can "invite" her ufficially, declaring to cover her expenses, which might increase her chances of getting the visa. She still might not get it though.

In general my impression is that it is getting more and more harder to obtain a Schengen visa. For anything other than "nomal" situations.
Normal would be for example, your GF having a well paid job, a house, a husband, children, and considerable savings in Thailand and going on a 10 days holiday to Europe.
Or her being married to an European and going there in order to join him living there.
Thats the cases they mostly deal with at these embassies.

Explaining something like, "we are going to live on a boat, therefore have no fix adress, in order to travel we dont work now,..." is likely not going to be appreciated.
The key point seems to be that she has to proof to the embassy that she is going to return to her country after the trip.

If i were you, i would consider Turkey. Less hassle with the visa, cheaper cost of living, great cruising ground, and also lot of good value for money boats.
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Old 03-12-2019, 02:10   #4
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Quote: Explaining something like, "we are going to live on a boat, therefore have no fix adress, in order to travel we dont work now,..." is likely not going to be appreciated.

Assuming it wasn't an incompetent visa service you used, this is the most likely reason. She appears to the agent as a high risk to overstay permanently, become a burden to the state and possibly be a victim of trafficking.

If it's a serious relationship, marriage is probably the most likely solution but just getting a visa is probably not a good reason to get married.

Also, what type of visa are you trying to get? A regular short term tourist visa or a longer term that would be considered residency?
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Old 03-12-2019, 02:21   #5
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Exactly.

But even marriage is not always the solution, my wife got declined her 3 months visitors visa for the same reason (no sufficient proof of return) despite of being married with an EU national.
If married she can get a resident card, but again only if you as the husband can proof to have a place where to live in that country, sufficient income to sustain both (savings not accepted), and health insurance.
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Old 03-12-2019, 10:46   #6
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

23 years ago I had 3 family members from the Philippines living as CREW on my yacht in Italy for 6 months, then they flew home, no state force. Nowadays "Crew" is not applicable on yachts any more, only tourist. There must be a loop hole for the luxury yachts, but I did not peep into this hole.

And yes, there are some places on the oceans where sailing women are scared, jump ship and the lonesome master captain is forced to sell. Think about Southern ocean arriving from Galapagos, South Africa arriving after an Indian Ocean crossing before departing for Brasil, even in Philippines low priced yachts are found, I know about a Bavaria 38 or like that size 45000€ ready for leaving, no, not my boat; that would cost you 5x more ;-)
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Old 03-12-2019, 20:43   #7
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by blubaju View Post
23 years ago I had 3 family members from the Philippines living as CREW on my yacht in Italy for 6 months, then they flew home, no state force. Nowadays "Crew" is not applicable on yachts any more, only tourist. There must be a loop hole for the luxury yachts, but I did not peep into this hole.

And yes, there are some places on the oceans where sailing women are scared, jump ship and the lonesome master captain is forced to sell. Think about Southern ocean arriving from Galapagos, South Africa arriving after an Indian Ocean crossing before departing for Brasil, even in Philippines low priced yachts are found, I know about a Bavaria 38 or like that size 45000€ ready for leaving, no, not my boat; that would cost you 5x more ;-)
Dear Blubaju. I agree 23 years ago many things where different and more easy at some point. The Philippines is a wonderful cruising ground and if you may have some leads on the Bavaria I have a look into this, but thinking to buy in the range of 50' yachts. Thank for your reply and happy sailing.
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Old 03-12-2019, 20:54   #8
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by vw1961 View Post
Hello

Are you European or American?

If you are European, you can "invite" her ufficially, declaring to cover her expenses, which might increase her chances of getting the visa. She still might not get it though.

In general my impression is that it is getting more and more harder to obtain a Schengen visa. For anything other than "nomal" situations.
Normal would be for example, your GF having a well paid job, a house, a husband, children, and considerable savings in Thailand and going on a 10 days holiday to Europe.
Or her being married to an European and going there in order to join him living there.
Thats the cases they mostly deal with at these embassies.

Explaining something like, "we are going to live on a boat, therefore have no fix adress, in order to travel we dont work now,..." is likely not going to be appreciated.
The key point seems to be that she has to proof to the embassy that she is going to return to her country after the trip.

If i were you, i would consider Turkey. Less hassle with the visa, cheaper cost of living, great cruising ground, and also lot of good value for money boats.
Dear vw1961
Im European, but live in Thailand many years already. I agree on your reply I tried, she has a house, job etc. Still got denied because of an agent who didn't know that the first time a Thai only can visit for about two weeks. I applied for six months visa. Also it really depends who is handling the visa process and the person to talk.
Thank for your reply and happy sailing.
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Old 03-12-2019, 21:14   #9
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBrauer View Post
I'm married to a filipina and have circumnavigated, she is now half way around. Should be similar for Thai. She has lived aboard for seven years. Consider purchasing a boat in Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, or one of the other surrounding countries and cross Indian Ocean to South Africa. Wasn't too difficult for visas that route. Langkawi usually has several good boats for sale. You might cruise SE Asia for a year or two to get use to the boat.
Dear DocBrauer.
I am considering to buy in Asia already, Langkawi I have been and as a buyer you surely understand it's not easy to find a yacht that serves your needs in condition, price etc. Seeing pictures is sometimes misleading especially when you find out they been taken two years ago
I'm not married, but been together for some years. Getting married only for visa purpose is not what I believe a good way. I'm happy for you that you able to have your wife on board and sure many great times. I hope I can figure it out and follow a similar route.
Thank for your reply and happy sailing.
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Old 03-12-2019, 22:04   #10
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

I have and British friend who tried to cruise with a Thai girlfriend. There were big problems with authorities in the Med. He married her, but still couldn't get her a British passport for 5 years after that. Last I heard they were living in Turkish Cyprus.
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Old 03-12-2019, 22:55   #11
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by joe4yacht View Post
Dear vw1961
Im European, but live in Thailand many years already. I agree on your reply I tried, she has a house, job etc. Still got denied because of an agent who didn't know that the first time a Thai only can visit for about two weeks. I applied for six months visa. Also it really depends who is handling the visa process and the person to talk.
Thank for your reply and happy sailing.
6 month visa is not your standard tourist visa.

Even for people from wealthy western countries (USA, Canada, Austrailia)...you get 90 days out of the last 180 as a tourist. You have to jump thru a lot more hoops to get a long stay visa and at 6 months, they are usually looking at a visa with residency attached which adds to the requirements.

Also, having a house & job by itself doesn't suggest she can afford to live in Europe for 6 months. Average Thai income is only something like $400 so unless she is quite wealthy by Thai standards, that may not cut it.
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Old 03-12-2019, 23:58   #12
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

I’m married to a Chinese lady. I brought her in on a K1 visa, Fiancé visa, that allows you 90 days to seal the deal. If you marry a girl overseas and then apply for green card status for her it will take a year plus. That is a K3 visa. We dated almost 2 full years and 6 trips to China to get to know one another as best we could before tying the knot.

None of this applies to you. Some of us know that there are countries the USA has designated as being on the Black List. These countries had lots of girls come to USA on tourist visas, educational visas, work permit visas and then violate the visa. By disappearing into ethnic neighborhoods... by overstaying their visas ... by trying to marry any one they can...u can imagine or may have heard dozens of stories over the years. I know that Philippines, China, Russia, Ukraine, are blacklisted. I’m not sure of Vietnam or Thailand.

It is a real problem. Way too much legislation arrived way too late. Europe is suffering deeply due to the Syrian war exodus.

I feel your pain. If you decide to get her legal Status use an immigration attorney ... not a visa service. It is money well spent.
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Old 04-12-2019, 00:14   #13
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

I agree with AlanSmith.....use a well-recommended immigration attorney, not a visa service.
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Old 04-12-2019, 01:27   #14
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Dear Sailors.

Thank you very much for your replies and much appreciated.
I didn't know about an immigration attorney thanks for that!
Also thinking what AlanSmith said about black listed countries,it may be possible that Thailand is on this list I don't know. Human Trafficking , bar girls etc. Is a big concern and no wonder everyone is in a bad light, married or not. Well I keep looking and maybe I get lucky to buy a yacht in Asia or surrounded countries as this will be my cruising grounds. The reason I am looking at Europe is because there are some nice yachts for a decent price worth flying there, repair or upgrade them and sail back to Asia. Thanks again for your replies and wish you happy times on your yacht where ever you are.
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Old 04-12-2019, 03:03   #15
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Re: Thai GF and wanting to buy a yacht/ Visa questions

Just a hint, no connection: Most yachts 4 sale in Philippine waters are advertised in Puerto Galera Yacht Club magazine. https://www.pgyc.org/sail-boats-for-sale.php
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