Arrival and departure procedures can be found here:

  1. Documents required:
    1. Ship’s registration: US Coast Guard registration
    2. Insurance
    3. Crew list
      1. Names
      2. Passport numbers
      3. Passport expations
      4. Dates of birth
      5. Nationalities
      6. Vaccines
      7. Clearance papers from last country visited (not required if US was last country)
    4. Radio license: FCC Ship station license
    5. Operator license: FCC Radio-telephone Operator license
  2. Our procedures should comply with the regulations:
    1. When in Iles de la Societe waters monitor VHF Channel 6.
    2. We will plan on making Papeete our first port of entry.
      1. If we stop at the Marquesas first, we must check in with the police, grab an arrival document, and later in the trip obtain formal clearance in Papeete.
      2. When sailing into our first port of entry, we must fly the USA Ensign off the starboard spreader with the yellow Q flag (request customs) below our ensign.
      3. Per Pub126: “Pilotage is compulsory and must be arranged at least 24 hours in advance, confirming vessel’s ETA 1 hour prior to arrival. The pilot boards about 2 miles NW of the harbor entrance.” Papeete’s pilot can be reached on VHF Channel 12.
      4. We then await customs. Pub126 states: “Vessels awaiting practique usually anchor with the inner range lights in line and the front entrance range light structure bearing 140°, in a depth of 31m.”
      5. Everyone must remain on board until the captain has checked in with customs.
      6. Everyone on board must have a passport valid until 6 months beyond the date of departure.
      7. No visas are required for US or EU citizens if staying less than 30 days.
      8. For those without visas, proof of available funds covering your stay in FP may be required. (i.e. Prove you’re not free-loading.) Bring a bank statement just in case.
      9. A bond must be paid equivalent to a one-way ticket out of French Polynesia.
        1. The bond may be waived for us, since we are staying less than 30 days.
      10. Once clearing customs we remove the Q flag and hoist the French courtesy flag above the USA Ensign and are free to roam the country.
    3. Before departing French Polynesia we must complete Final Clearance.
      1. Final Clearance can be obtained from an outer island, as long as Formal Clearance has been completed in Papeete.
    4. Arrival back in the US:
      1. 12 miles offshore, we must fly the yellow Q flag under the ensign on the starboard spreader.
      2. Per, “Clearance is best done at Ala Wai yacht harbour.”
        1. Customs & Border Protection, Honolulu Seaport
        2. Tel:(808) 522-8012 / out of hrs (808) 237-4600 Fax:(808) 522-8018
        3. Opening hours: 07:00-15:00 (Mon-Fri)
      3. Plan to arrive on a weekday, or we will be stuck on the boat until they open.
      4. We must check in within 24 hours of arrival.
    5. Notes
      1. the Papeete immigration office is up a hallway of stairs next to the food court in the airport, through the first door on the right. It’s not very well labeled. If the office is closed on the weekends the gendarme downstairs will clear you out, but you may have to ring the bell on the wall to get a hold of someone.
      2. The Papeete yacht clearance office is still by the port, but is now in a tiny office in the big new gray ferry building, on the water side of the ground floor. It’s very poorly labeled as well.

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