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  #1  
Old 07-07-2012
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Passports

We are dreaming of cruising the Caribbean and we were wondering about my wife's passport which is PRC. She is still currently here on a visitor's visa and we're awaiting documents yada.

Can she visit any of the Caribbean islands without worrying about getting entangled in an immigration problem?
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  #2  
Old 07-07-2012
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Re: Passports

All the same rules apply no matter if you sail or fly. You will have to check with each countries rules regarding travel on a PRC passport.
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Old 07-07-2012
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Re: Passports

Thanks. Do you have to have a Visa for that country/island if you are transient? Do they check every boat in every port generally? There is no way to get a quick answer about entering Martinique or Grenada from the Chinese Embassy nor am I keen on them asking questions right now.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

You don't ask China you ask the country you want to visit. I would not be surprised if you need visas in lots of countries. Sometimes you have to get a visa ahead of time from a consulate of the country - it may have to be in China though - you would have to check and see if a visitor can go to a French consulate in the US for example.

It is not a matter of them checking the boat. When you arrive in a port-of-entry in a country you go to the various government offices with the boat registration, clearance from last port, passports of crew and possibly a crew list. Usually the captain only goes although in some countries they want to see everyone. After all the paperwork is done you are in the country. You have to clear out by visiting many of the same offices (all countries are different). It is a very bad idea to try to sneak someone into a foreign country on your boat. Penalties can be severe.
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Back to Grenada in early December. Not sure I will remember how to sail. Will spend the winter and early spring in the Caribbean and then head to Bermuda and the northeast US. Still trying to decide if we will bring the boat to Canada, either in 2015 or 2016.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

I think that smuggling her into countries without paperwork is a good way to get rid of a bad wife. Also a good way to add some excitement to a boring life if that's what you need.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

Quote:
Originally Posted by killarney_sailor View Post
You don't ask China you ask the country you want to visit. I would not be surprised if you need visas in lots of countries. Sometimes you have to get a visa ahead of time from a consulate of the country - it may have to be in China though - you would have to check and see if a visitor can go to a French consulate in the US for example.

It is not a matter of them checking the boat. When you arrive in a port-of-entry in a country you go to the various government offices with the boat registration, clearance from last port, passports of crew and possibly a crew list. Usually the captain only goes although in some countries they want to see everyone. After all the paperwork is done you are in the country. You have to clear out by visiting many of the same offices (all countries are different). It is a very bad idea to try to sneak someone into a foreign country on your boat. Penalties can be severe.
We cannot afford to mess around with her passport or current visas. She has to have permission to leave her country and requires more paperwork than I do to visit the same countries. It just seems a little onerous to have visas to many countries when you are transient on a boat. However, having never ever done it I have no real idea what to do. For Europe she only needs one visa and the rest of the countries honor that visa. Last time she got a visa to Italy and visited several countries.

She also at times has problems entering the USA and they make it difficult to enter the country and they at times only give her a month to be here instead of three to six months. If we create a problem then that could cause trouble not only getting a green card but China may refuse to even let her out of the country. She is retired so she has to produce a retiree document each time she leaves China along with her passport and visa for port of entry. If she was working she would need permission from her work to leave and for how long before even applying for a visa. She also has to produce more records from the police as well as other documents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sww914 View Post
I think that smuggling her into countries without paperwork is a good way to get rid of a bad wife. Also a good way to add some excitement to a boring life if that's what you need.
Not trying to smuggle anyone. I just have never entered another country via a private boat and I don't know the procedures.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

The source of info that most cruisers use on this topic is NOONSITE click on country and then immigration to get details.

I would be aware that in the eastern Caribbean countries which, in the past used paper based systems now have computerised passport readers and a centralised clearing system called eseaclear/
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

Quote:
Originally Posted by TQA View Post
The source of info that most cruisers use on this topic is NOONSITE click on country and then immigration to get details.

I would be aware that in the eastern Caribbean countries which, in the past used paper based systems now have computerised passport readers and a centralised clearing system called eseaclear/
Thank you so very much. Just what we needed. Worse than I hoped for but better than I feared.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

You are confusing two different things - the situation with the Chinese government on one hand and the regulations of the countries you want to visit on the other. My wife is originally from Beijing and is now a Canadian citizen which is a big help from the perspective of entering other countries since we need not got visas to most countries (Australia being an exception, go figure). Her take is that leaving China is not a big problem but entering other countries with a Chinese passport can be. The reason is that many Chinese citizens have abused visitor status in the past so other countries want to have more control when they visit. Your experience with the US is typical and this is not likely to change any time soon.

I don't think the fact that east Caribbean nations have an electronic check-in system is going to help with visa requirements - it just makes it easier to enter because there is less paperwork (we have had questions on forms like, "How many crew died of plague during the voyage?"). Check Noonsite, check the country's immigration website and you should be able to find out what the visa requirements are. BTW, entering by sailboat is generally more complex than entering by airplane for a holiday at a resort.
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Back to Grenada in early December. Not sure I will remember how to sail. Will spend the winter and early spring in the Caribbean and then head to Bermuda and the northeast US. Still trying to decide if we will bring the boat to Canada, either in 2015 or 2016.
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Old 07-08-2012
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Re: Passports

Quote:
Originally Posted by killarney_sailor View Post
You are confusing two different things - the situation with the Chinese government on one hand and the regulations of the countries you want to visit on the other. My wife is originally from Beijing and is now a Canadian citizen which is a big help from the perspective of entering other countries since we need not got visas to most countries (Australia being an exception, go figure). Her take is that leaving China is not a big problem but entering other countries with a Chinese passport can be. The reason is that many Chinese citizens have abused visitor status in the past so other countries want to have more control when they visit. Your experience with the US is typical and this is not likely to change any time soon.

I don't think the fact that east Caribbean nations have an electronic check-in system is going to help with visa requirements - it just makes it easier to enter because there is less paperwork (we have had questions on forms like, "How many crew died of plague during the voyage?"). Check Noonsite, check the country's immigration website and you should be able to find out what the visa requirements are. BTW, entering by sailboat is generally more complex than entering by airplane for a holiday at a resort.
Thanks. Sorry I came across that way but I do understand it all too well on both ends although we have no experience arriving by boat which seems much more complicated depending on the country. I do understand that a little better after checking out Noonsite. Reading it and doing it aren't the same thing though so I appreciate all the input. I've been hoping it would be simple to be transient. Guess not and how naive of me.

So far leaving China has not been a problem. We're hoping there is not some input on the US end they could complicate things in China. Not too worried about that though.

She is still working on her green card to Canada although that process is 4 years old. Her son is living in Toronto and he qualified thru a program that allows her to get a Canadian green card. We'll stay on that as it will help entering the US and other places like your wife. We won't do anything about a US green card until the Canadian issue is finalized. That still leaves her with a PRC passport for the foreseeable future.

Thanks again all. We will hold off on any charters for now as we want no complications on China's, Canada's or the US's end.
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