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UK National entering BVI/ USA... Visa Flights... :)
faybion
Posted: Thursday, October 15, 2009 2:23 AM
Joined: 18/11/2008
Posts: 66


Hi

I have no idea where to start when it comes to the US! If i arrive by boat to option A. the British Vigin Isles do i need to have a flight booked out of the country before my arrival and i belive i dont need a visa as i am british.
Or B. if i arrive in the US by yacht what vis should i get and again do i have to have a flight booked out of the country before arrival...? im so confused about all of this..

Any help much appriciated, Faye

Henning
Posted: Thursday, October 15, 2009 4:40 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


Hi Faye, If you show up on a boat, you don't have to worry, the captain takes care of it. Coming into the US you will be issued a B1/B2 visa on entry as a British national, no problems unless you have a criminal record. It's semi quick and painless.
Mike French
Posted: Thursday, October 15, 2009 1:11 PM
Joined: 06/05/2008
Posts: 57


Faye I think you want to check a bit further. Entering the US by a non recognised carrier, IE anything that is not a scheduled airline or cruise liner you will need a B1/B2 visa. A B1/B2 is required before travel and cannot be issued in the US. The captain should know this and should not let you embark without the correct visa for entry into the port of destination. There still appear to be a number of options to securing the B1/B2 visa. Give me a bell and I will tell you what the most recent crop off yachting newbies to come through IYT have been doing to get their US visas.
Chief
Posted: Thursday, October 15, 2009 2:22 PM
Joined: 02/06/2008
Posts: 341


"The captain should know this ..."

Now THAT is funny, really really funny. If we could collect a Euro for everytime those words or its " should have known" variant were uttered we could endow a scholarship for training up and coming Sons of Magellan or for promoting the retirement of those who still don't get it after a couple years as Master Under God.

Then again, Henning's response could have been nothing more than a really cruel joke in keeping with the xenophobic sentiment that seems so prevalent lately.

 


Henning
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 1:16 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


I don't see why it would be a joke, yes, I know this, as I said, the captain takes care of it. I do it all the time. I arrange the visas for my entire crew every time we go anywhere, it's part of my job. Yes, I arrange them before we leave, and we are issued them on arrival as we clear in. Anyone who has read any of my posts on the topic of immigrations realizes that I am not xenophobic in the slightest and welcome good crew of any race, nationality or gender. It's tough enough to find good crew to discriminate on any factors outside of ability and personality. There is far more crappy crew out there than good.
Chief
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 2:57 AM
Joined: 02/06/2008
Posts: 341


Captain Henning, sir ... with all the respect due one holding such an exalted position in the world's hierarchy of nautical and maritime endeavour, I have to express a lingering fragment of doubt that the guardians of American sekurity and domestic inviolability will acquiesce to your suggestion that they rescind State Department policies on your behalf. . http://travel.state.gov/visa/temp/types/types_1262.html . How would you "take care of" crewmember Faybion's US visa so she doesn't have to worry about it as you pull into Fort Lauderdale?
Henning
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 4:24 AM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1049


Well, I used to gather all the documentation and send it to an agent about a week before departure who took care of it, but it appears that CBP have made the system even easier. http://travel.state.gov/visa/temp/without/without_1990.html
junior
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 7:55 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


I didn't have the time to read the link but I can relate my experience. When arriving to the US with a crew who does not have a visa I as captain must physically go to immigration with the crew and ships papers to apply for a Visa. In my case all worked out fine and the crew was issued a visa on the spot for a one or two hundred dollar processing fee. This is a bad way to do it. Any serious professional yachty going to the Caribbean should have the American visa in their passport before hand. Yachts move fast and our schedules are unknown. I may be in St Vincent today and next thing the owners orders us to St Thomas or Miami . If the crew doesn't have the visa it makes my job a hassle. Remember, each time you appear before an immigration officer you are asking for permission to secure a visa. This officer could refuse for many reasons and now you and the boat are out of luck. Be professional and Get your visa before you leave Europe. Also it sounds as if Faybion may be doing a simple delivery. In this case you may be arriving as a "guest " , not a crew on a simple tourist visa. . Onward transportation is a very logical question. As captain I always provide onward transport to delivery crew before departure. Discuss this with the captain
Chief
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 12:14 PM
Joined: 02/06/2008
Posts: 341


"it appears that CBP have made the system even easier ..." . Oh, you mean through the visa waiver program? The one you linked to that says: . "If arriving by air or sea, they are traveling on an approved carrier (See the approved carriers list) and have a return trip ticket to any foreign destination;" ?
Anonymous
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 5:10 PM

""In my case all worked out fine and the crew was issued a visa on the spot for a one or two hundred dollar processing fee.""

Well that's nice to know, another loophole the US government allows for the sake of profit.  Dispicable. 

Before someone who's "oh so intellegent" wants to call me a "racist" or an "ethnicist" [which is not really relevant based upon my race being the same as most in the industry..while I'm both Anglo-Saxon..and then some. Booya! ]  So no, for some of you, please don't try to use the race/ethnicity card.

I'm not against internationals in any industry.  I would rather be around a diverse group than a bunch of the "same" no matter what nationality...and I think I speak for most when I say such. 

BUT THAT BEING SAID. I hope that I speak for most Americans when I say - for some of you Americans to suggest to internationals entering the US looking for work on how to "get" a work visa, you should be ashamed of yourselves, since you are only hurting "yourselves" in more ways than you (forget) to realize. Knock knock. 

 

This is a futile effort, isn't it?


junior
Posted: Friday, October 16, 2009 6:54 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Well Anon, I believe your effort is indeed futile, misconceived and inflammatory. The crew I cleared into United States was the nephew of the owner who joined the yacht after Antigua Race week under the mistaken assumption that he could sail with us into the US as a European tourist without first securing a tourist visa. The monetary fine levied on the applicant was to reimbursed the American taxpayer for the cost of dispatching an immigration official to personally review the case. In return for the kind treatment this PRIVATE yacht spent 14 weeks leaving a trail of 500 euro notes all the way up the coast until Eastport Maine. To the best of my knowledge I have never engaged in illegal or unethical activities . Mr anonymous you are a small minded, provocative fool .
Salvador
Posted: Saturday, October 17, 2009 12:51 AM
Joined: 22/07/2009
Posts: 97


Hi!!

For what I understood, if your honest with the Embassy, (personally,, I was going to ...  now studying for few months, so .. postponed it...) about your situation\life and intentions it's the best way to get the propper visa. I also understood you can change the date of flight back... or even to change the visa status as things progress.

Anyway  ( as a small boat crew : ) I'm  happy to know Captains, or even agencies can take care of that for us!!! It's great.

Goooood luck

 


Richard
Posted: Saturday, October 17, 2009 8:21 PM
Joined: 30/08/2008
Posts: 9


Hi Faye, As you can see from the responses, the question you asked can result in various answers, I will not comment on which is right or wrong. I will let you know my experience and since your did not receive an answer regarding BVI, I will address that also. Please also understand it is your responsibility to check out what you need to do and how you need to do it. The Captain responsibility is once you board the vessel and depart. As Captain, he or she is supposed to understand what is required. That may not be the case. So, ask questions and get answers and test your decisions with others. The US. The answer you seek are somewhere in the responses you got. If you fly into the US on a scheduled plane or ship then I believe that UK citizens are able to use the Visa Waiver Program. That programs allows you to visit I think, not technically look for work. If you arrive in any US waters or territory or US States proper, by boat, pleasure or charter, guest or crew you will need a visa. This is called "non approved carrier". If you are on a private vessel as crew or guest you can get by with a B1/B2 visa. Now here is where you will get a lot of disagreement, but if you enter the US on a boat, non approved carrier, as crew on a charter boat, then you need a C1/D1. The only place you will find the right answer about this one is the Barbardian web site for the US Embassy. They plainly indicate the difference between crew on Charter boats and crew on private boats. And yes they are right since the visa officer in Trinidad behind the bullet proof glass that reviewed my partners visa requests for both B1/B2 and C1/D2 agreed with us that she need both visa to enter from BVI to US Virgin Islands as crew on charter and crew or guest on private. And no, the BVI to USVI is not special, just wired. Now with all that said, I THINK most crew get away with only a B1/B2 visa, but if you wish to be safe get both and just tell the US Embassy that you may be working as crew on Charter or Crew on Private and need to be safe and have both. It only cost a second $100 fee for the second one. You apply for visas at the US Embassy in UK. They are supposed to issue US visas to UK citizens. With that said you can go to Barbados in the Caribbean and they are very used to dealing with visa requests for crew. We just happened to go to Trinidad because we were going there for other reasons. OH, most Embassy may say you can only have one visa, that is not true but you will need to justify why you want two. Now the BVI. I am afraid the fact that you are a UK citizen does not help you here. I was a charter captain there for 7 years. UKers don't have any rights there, it does not matter that BVI is a British commonwealth. OH, by the way you are right you will need a plane ticket or a vessel arranged to take you out of where you arrive, that goes for US or BVI. Both check that every time you enter, how are you leaving and when. and No you can't just say "I am going to buy a ticket"., you have to have one already. Once I got saved by having a extra Ferry ticket back to the USVI when I arrived late at night in BVI. Since I am a US citizen I had a way back to the US off of BVI. They don't usually care where you go but sometimes they even pelt you with questions about that also. When you arrive in BVI, they will let you stay for 30 days max without a work permit or resident permit. You MUST have a way off the island or they will not let you in. You may not LOOK FOR WORK while you are there and if you are in the process of getting a work permit YOU CAN NOT BE IN THE COUNTRY WHILE IT IS BEING PROCESSED and processing takes three or more months. I know it sound complicated but it can be done for either the US or BVI. Just remember that most people do not know the requirements. Most will say you need a B1/B2 only and they may have a full crew with only that visa. But one day someone is going to read the law and an immigration officer will say, you are crew on charter, that requires a C1/D1 visa. And by the way right or wrong, the immigration officer is ALWAYS right. He or she can not be countermanded by a superior. So don't even ask to see a supervisor it will do not good. Good luck and ask a lot of questions and be prepared that the answers will lead to more questions.
Dave
Posted: Sunday, October 18, 2009 7:39 PM
Joined: 01/05/2009
Posts: 2


Hi Richard,

Have you ever had expierience with getting US visas for Australians?

 


Richard
Posted: Monday, October 19, 2009 1:09 PM
Joined: 30/08/2008
Posts: 9


Dave, Yes, my partner is an Australian. She has both B1/B2 and C1/D1 visas because of the difference between working on charter and private vessels. We requested and received them in one day in Trinidad. Waiting times are posted on the general Embassy site for each Embassy and visa type. The application form does not let you indicate what visa you want, just the reasons you want a visa. So you must us the correct key words and be prepared to justify what you want and under what circumstance the visas are to be used. Also, most immigration officers don't know the difference and what they say when you try to enter the US is right even if they are wrong. A supervisor can not override an immigration officers decision or ruling. Hope this helps. Richard
Mike French
Posted: Monday, October 19, 2009 7:57 PM
Joined: 06/05/2008
Posts: 57


A C1/D visa only allows a max of 28 days in the US and as such is of little use to yacht crew.  The recognised defacto standard is a B1/B2 visa.  Most captains would be  unlikely to take a crew member onboard without their B1/B2 visa.  That is not to say that one could not secure a job conditional upon getting the B1/B2.

To say one is not allowed to look for a job when in the US is rather ridiculous these days.  Nearly every job hunt starts online and geographical location is often irrelevant.  Much of this discussion, rather revoltingly, seems aimed at discouraging 'foreigners' from the coming to the US and is not in the spirit of the international nature of yachting.

The bottom line is that a crew member without the correct visa makes life difficult for the captain or agent and is therefore usually avoided.  Most boats are likely to enter the US at some stage and therefore a suitable visa is necessary.  It is worth remembering that captains are not immigration lawyers and so their perception of which visas are required is what is important.  Trying to lecture a captain that your C1/D is actually ok because you can enter the US as a charter crew in the Virgin Islands will not help if the owner has told the captain that the boat 'might' go up the East coast for the summer.

The B1/B2 visa is what you need if you wish to travel to the US on a yacht.  You will less likely to get an interview without one.  The best advice is to get as many of the plus points you can when looking for work and a B1/B2 is just that.  It is reason alone to get the visa.





Ben Franklin
Posted: Monday, October 19, 2009 10:27 PM
Joined: 04/10/2009
Posts: 19


"To say one is not allowed to look for a job when in the US is rather ridiculous these days.  Nearly every job hunt starts online and geographical location is often irrelevant.  Much of this discussion, rather revoltingly, seems aimed at discouraging 'foreigners' from the coming to the US and is not in the spirit of the international nature of yachting."

Hmm... I am not sure, but I do believe that the US Government is not based on the "international nature of yachting."

"It is worth remembering that captains are not immigration lawyers and so their perception of which visas are required is what is important."

Actually I would think that the perception of important would be to the immigration official? Just a guess. Yacht Captain, Yachtmasters, are not officials of the Government. What they perceive is of no relevance to US Law. Seaman, need to have a C1/D1.  A B1/B2 is for tourists wishing to stay longer, generally the owners who have purchased a home and like to get out of the cold, nasty winters of Europe. It is for people who work for a land based company somewhere, and have to come here to conduct business on behalf of their company and to then go home. NOT WALK THE FREAKING DOCK!!!

I am begining to wonder about people from other countries. You have this so called Yachtmaster, a Captain's License, because you should know how to captain a boat. Part of that, is KNOWING AND UNDERSTANDING THE LAWS APPLICABLE TO YOU WHEN GOING ON A FORIEGN VOYAGE. The fact that you can not do with a C1/D1, shows that your not real seaman, if you were, you would get a true commercial license, and take the law parts of class, but instead of putting in years at sea AND taking the classes, you had a community outreach program lobby the goverment to make exceptions for you. So a bunch of kids, who have no business running a car, let alone a vessel, THINK that they might know something.

Faye, here is what you need to do, get on the phone, call the Embassy near you and tell that that you are a seaman arriving, your being paid to do the job right?, your a seaman, and you need a visa. THEY WILL TELL YOU WHAT VISA YOU NEED. DOES ANYONE HAVE TO SPELL THIS OUT MORE CLEARLY! CALL THE EMBASSY!

If your can not figure out how to call the correct people, i.e. government offices, and ask simple questions who should not be in this line of work. You need to have a pen, paper, and CLEAR QUESTIONS to ask before calling. This is all part of being in the MARITIME INDUSTRY! Yachties are not special, you don't get your own set of rules here, if your getting paid, your a seaman. Get a Seaman's Visa. Unless your the girl who is traveling solo, in her own little boat around the world, your NOT ON VACATION!


Mike French
Posted: Monday, October 19, 2009 11:49 PM
Joined: 06/05/2008
Posts: 57


Dear Ben Havent you realised it yet? This industry is more interested in when Dead Benjamins talk than live ones.
Ben Franklin
Posted: Tuesday, October 20, 2009 12:48 AM
Joined: 04/10/2009
Posts: 19


I got your attention didn't I? I might be dead, but your one of those DB Yachties from some other point on the globe, who couldn't make it at a real job in their own country, get a real Seaman's license, and your just like a ILLEGAL field worker, being taken advantage of and at the same time, your actions make it harder for people who do obey the law, and put in the real sea time to get paid a decent wage.

Good thing this is not Arizona, that Sherrif out there would have a great time with the idiots in this industry that seem to think that because you make 30-something grand a year your the king of the world. He would love to have some sting operations walking along the dock, asking everyone with an accent if they want daywork, only to take you in, have you spend a couple of years in Federal-Pound-Me-In -The-Butt-Prison, oh, and guess what, then when your sorry law evading self gets out of prison, you get a tickets home, and then you go on the list, which means you could not come back for at least 10 years, and no boat that come this way could hire you.

But, unfortunately, it's not that way here. But when your stupid a$$ gets does caught, you can have a great story to tell your nasty snot nosed kids how much of an idiot Daddy was.

How you like those Benjimins?



Mike French
Posted: Tuesday, October 20, 2009 2:00 AM
Joined: 06/05/2008
Posts: 57


Dead Benjamins walk the walk, you my friend talk the talk.
14Freedom
Posted: Tuesday, October 20, 2009 5:36 AM
Joined: 16/04/2009
Posts: 155


There is a job posting on Triton for a team in Cape Town SA...and they couldn't even spell Cape Town.
So what is ZAR? Dead South Africans?

Enter subject


Channel: Crew Needed

We are currently looking for crew to operate our vessel in Capte town for the 2009/2010 season.

Please apply in full cnfidence to info@ifayoc.com

Only Captain/Chef-Stewardess teams need apply.

Please enclose photos, references and qualifications.

Thank you,

IFA YOC

and I think the Dead Kennedy's are too funny! I MEAN THE BAND, FOLKS!

junior
Posted: Tuesday, October 20, 2009 11:23 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026


Mighty provincial posting Ben. Imagine attacking a foreign born entrepreneur setting up business in the US, creating jobs and contributing to the Treasury ! Ben, when you travel worldwide with yachts you will immediately observe that virtually all Yacht specific entrepreneurs are foreigners servicing this very unique trade. The whole industry would collapse without their knowledgeable contribution. I just spoke to the onsite Technical applications adviser for International Paints in Spain and he was American. Mike French s knowledge of the worldwide yachting scene and perspectives provide a competitive edge to any American student who attends his school . You may view the British as overrepresented in yachting, but this is simply a result of experience and their ability to locate in other cultures to get the job done. . Lets hope your thought process is not shared by the American general population. Foreign contribution has always been the seed of American prosperity. Places like Silicone valley are full of them dam foreigners. . Sergy Brin , Jerry Yang....., Something like a third of all US Nobel laureates in science are foreign born. Lets not forget Alexander Graham Bell, Fermi, Teller. Einstein..... . Gee, if I remember correctly, even your good mate Alexander Hamilton was born in the British West Indies. Perhaps you have developed this anti foreigner complex because founding Father Alexander has consistently been voted as the best looking figure on the American Currency ? Get a decent haircut Ben and Get over it .. In the future when you would like to comment on difficult to comprehend topics, stick with stuff like...Why does the Awlgrip can lid always fall onto your freshly sanded teak decks, paint side down ??....
faybion
Posted: Thursday, October 29, 2009 12:13 PM
Joined: 18/11/2008
Posts: 66


Hi

Thanks for the advise everyone i seemed to of started a big discussion on the subject!

Faye

 
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