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Old 22-03-2020, 19:39   #1
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Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

Hi all,

The corona virus has us stuck here on Hawaii. Since we don't know when we will be able to sail further, our cruising license may end up expiring (Normally CBP will NOT extend this) Perhaps the CBP will have other instructions at some point over the next few months, but we may end up having to import our boat.

I've heard that there is no import tax if the boat is imported into the US in Hawaii.

Can anyone confirm this or anyone tell me how much we might end up paying on a boat worth say, $150k?


thank you
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Old 22-03-2020, 20:41   #2
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Re: Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

https://www.cbp.gov/document/publica...-united-states

https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/fi...0the%20U.S.pdf

PDF document, pg 142, says pleasure boats used personally by visitors not dutiable unless sold or registered.
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Old 22-03-2020, 21:06   #3
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Re: Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

Welcome to unusual times.

If you had to go the route of paying duty the nominal rate for bringing a vessel into the US is 1.5% of value. For $150K value that's about $2250. HST Code 8903.91.00. Hopefully it won't come to that, but one can never tell when the government is involved.

Under 19 CFR 4.94 (e) all that a cruising license does is remove the task of filling in all the paperwork required of a foreign vessel entering or traveling in the US. You may just be able to start that process, and if you're stuck in one port it wouldn't get too terrible.

Good luck with it, I hope instead we see you up in SE Alaska this summer.
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Old 15-06-2020, 08:45   #4
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Re: Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

Hi Dsanduril,
You seem to be quite familiar with customs questions. We are bringing a boat to the US from Canada and would like to talk with / hire someone to help. Please feel free to PM me and we can exchange information, unless I'm barking up the wrong tree.
Thanks.
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Old 15-06-2020, 08:52   #5
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Re: Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

@Danwrubel,

I've done it for myself and have avoided a few pitfalls in the process, but would in no way hold myself out as knowledgeable.

I would say there are a few questions I would ask immediately, such as where was the boat built? And when? Between Canada and the US under the current iteration of NAFTA there a number of advantageous terms depending on the answers to those questions. I'm not particularly familiar with those advantages - I know they exist - but I may know where to look.
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Old 15-06-2020, 09:52   #6
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Re: Tax on Importing a Boat to US?

The cruising permit allows you to move "freely" around the US. If your cruising permit expires you DO NOT have to forcefully leave. Yes, they will not renew your cruising permit. But you can get a "check in" on your port for like 10usd I think, and thats all you need. You can stay as long as you want on that. The only caveat is you need to check out and check in everytime you move ports. I think they also charge you for checking out. Please make sure you research this alternative at the CBP before thinking you will strike out and something more drastic needs to happen. I did this when my cruising permit expired in 2019. I moved from Fort Pierce to FLL to Miami to Marathon and paid in each port. No problem.
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