Customs & Immigration

customsandimmigrationCUSTOMS AND IMMIGRATION

We wish you a warm welcome to Antigua and Barbuda! It is the objective of the Antiguan Government and the Departments of Customs and Immigration to make procedures for entry by sea as quick and simple as possible. The main ports of entry include English Harbour, Jolly Harbour, Deepwater Harbour and Heritage Quay. Yachts wishing to visit Barbuda must clear in at one of the official ports of entry in Antigua prior to proceeding to Barbuda. As part of the clearance process, a Cruising Permit for Antiguan and Barbudan waters will be issued which is valid for a period of one month. If you plan to remain for longer than one month, it will be necessary to renew the Permit when it expires.

eSeaClear, the Caribbean pre-arrival notification system is now available and fully functional in Antigua. eSeaClear is an advanced online web service that makes it faster and easier to clear into Antigua. Vessel operators can store and submit declaration information electronically, eliminating the need to fill in forms manually upon arrival at each port. eSeaClear is currently available in three ports in Antigua – English Harbour, Jolly Harbour and Deepwater Harbour. All Customs, Immigration and Port Authority officials have been fully trained and are able to facilitate entry into Antigua using the eSeaClear system. For more information and to complete clearance forms online, go to: www.eseaclear.com.

Upon arrival in Antigua, however, it is still necessary for the Captain of the boat to proceed to Customs and Immigration as soon as possible while all passengers and crew remain on board the vessel until clearance procedures have been completed. When arriving after hours, the Captain must also remain on board until the port offices open and he/she has been able to clear in. If you plan to spend any time in the English and Falmouth Harbour areas, please be aware that your vessel will be subject to National Parks fees in additional to regular cruising fees. When proceeding to Customs and Immigration, be sure to take ship’s papers, passports and other documents relevant to everyone on board.

If you will have passengers or crew arriving by air without an outbound airline ticket, they will be required to produce a letter signed by the yacht’s Captain or agent explaining that they are joining the vessel and it will be necessary to have them signed onto the ship’s papers at the port closest to the vessel’s location. For passengers or crew leaving a yacht in Antigua, they will have to be signed off the vessel by an Immigration official upon presentation of an airline ticket for outbound travel. If they are transferring to another yacht, both Captains will have to present ships’ papers to enable the transfer.

Thanks for visiting Antigua and Barbuda. We hope Antigua Sailing Week meets all of your expectations and you will enjoy the exceptional variety of experiences that local yachting has to offer!!

CUSTOMS UPDATE

At a meeting held on Thursday, December 2, 2010 between the Antigua & Barbuda Marine Association, the Ministry of Finance and the Comptroller of Customs it was agreed that all goods and services for genuine yachts in transit will be free of all taxes and duties including fuel and provisioning to be used by charter guests. Support containers are considered a temporary import and will be free of all duties and taxes subject to the contents being re-exported and any spares consumed being shown to have been used in the maintenance of the yacht. In instances where major items cannot be accounted for, the applicable duties and taxes will become due and payable. Once imported, crews will have free access to the containers.

Temporary import of goods in support of events will be discretionary and generally free of all duties and taxes. However 14 days notice is required of any goods to be temporarily imported for these purposes. Event organisers such as Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting, Superyacht Cup, RORC Caribbean 600, Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta and Antigua Sailing Week should take special note. In the event of a disagreement, a liaison group comprising members of the ABMA, the Ministry of Finance and Customs will consult in order to reach a resolution.