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C&I help for USVI and SVI #172741
10/16/2018 08:28 AM
10/16/2018 08:28 AM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 104
Georgia
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cruzdoc Offline OP
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cruzdoc  Offline OP
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Had a couple of questions regarding clearance into and out of USVI and SVI. I am picking up a boat in Tortola and the next morning will clear into St. John and then heading to St. Thomas to pick up two passengers who will have just flown into STT. We are planning on then heading to Culebra. Will C & I let me add these passengers in St. John and clear them out with us even though we haven't picked them up yet or we will we have to clear them out in St. Thomas before heading to Culebra? (I guess I could alternatively have them ferry over to St. John's with us but needed help with the easiest logistics.)

Also, has anyone used the ROAM app yet and if so, how well did it work? I see where some have tried to clear in without going all the way into Ensenada Honda but looks like some have had problems with that recently as they are requiring you to be in the harbor before clearing you in?

Lastly, do we get cruising permits for Puerto Rico ahead of time or have to wait until we arrive to get one? I am confused by what I have read. Seems like some have gotten them thru charter company while others have waited until they got to Culebra.

Thanks in advance for any help.

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Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172766
10/16/2018 01:07 PM
10/16/2018 01:07 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,574
St. John VI - soon come
RickG Offline
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RickG  Offline
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St. John VI - soon come
I have not done this with ROAM, but we had a presentation from the ROAM program manager at an SSCA event at the beginning of the month. Basically, it is a video conference app and they want to see the people, the boat, and the documentation. You need to have a login.gov account. If you do not have a DTOPS sticker (required for SVI/PR) then you can buy one through the app.

I specifically asked if we had to be anchored somewhere in particular at Cuelbra, and the program manager responded that was not the the case with ROAM. If the office decided that they needed to do an inspection, they would direct you to the designated location.

Note: People who do not have US documentation may get different treatment.

More at: https://www.cbp.gov/travel/pleasure-boats-private-flyers/pleasure-boat-overview/roam

In general, it was a very positive discussion. They are doing app upgrades every two weeks, but old versions remain compatible.

Cheers, RickG


Marathon, FL Winter 2018
St. John VI Winter 2019
Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172771
10/16/2018 02:30 PM
10/16/2018 02:30 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,462
VI,PR,NY,AZ
sail445 Offline
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sail445  Offline
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If the boat you’re chartering is a US documented vessel you would have to clear out of Tortola then clear in in St John ( its not necessary to add your friends if they are US citizens) then go to St Thomas pick up your friends and clear into Culebra.
On your return trip you do not have to clear out of Culebra or St Thomas because they’re US territories but you must clear into Tortola when you arrive.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172793
10/16/2018 07:29 PM
10/16/2018 07:29 PM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 104
Georgia
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cruzdoc Offline OP
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cruzdoc  Offline OP
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Appreciate the info RickG and sail445. I am going to go ahead and download the ROAM app and get a login.gov account as you suggested RickG. Sounds like it could be an easy process potentially.

Based on saill445's comment above, it is not necessary to clear out of USVI to go to SVI (assuming US citizenship) but it is necessary to clear out of USVI going back to BVI. I think that is correct based on your comment but wanted to clarify for sure. Heading down in a couple of weeks and will update how things go with the ROAM app.

Cheers!

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172800
10/16/2018 09:05 PM
10/16/2018 09:05 PM
Joined: Jul 2008
Posts: 2,462
VI,PR,NY,AZ
sail445 Offline
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sail445  Offline
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VI,PR,NY,AZ
It’s not necessary to clear out of PR or the USVI to clear into the BVI.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172807
10/16/2018 11:07 PM
10/16/2018 11:07 PM
Joined: Apr 2014
Posts: 281
Rockford, Michigan
aarpskier Offline
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aarpskier  Offline
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Rockford, Michigan
In April 2018 we tried to clear into Culebra without going all the way into Ensenada Honda. No dice. Required to be in the harbor to check-in, not for inspection, just because. We thought our charter company had obtained the PR cruising permit before we departed STT. It had not, but got it for us online during a phone call.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172808
10/16/2018 11:51 PM
10/16/2018 11:51 PM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 104
Georgia
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cruzdoc Offline OP
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cruzdoc  Offline OP
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That makes sense. Looking back at your first post that is pretty clear and not sure how I misread it sail445. I did read you previous post regarding your experience aarpskier. It was very helpful. I'm going to try my luck if we decide to head to Culebrita and call ahead with ROAM. I figure it's worth a try and worst case we have to head into Ensenada Honda and back.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #172813
10/17/2018 07:58 AM
10/17/2018 07:58 AM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,132
Saint Thomas, USVI
CaptainJay Offline
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CaptainJay  Offline
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Saint Thomas, USVI
We started using ROAM late last season at CYOA. We have US customs decals on all of our boats. The first step is to make sure you have the US Customs decal. It works well both returning from BVI's or in your case arriving in Puerto Rico. You will want to check in with your charter company about the decal well in advance. With the decal and ROAM app you should be able to clear in both places, St John and Culebra via the app. Without it Puerto Rico/US Customs now requires you to present in person. This means going into St John to clear into the USVI then going to the Airport in Culebra and clearing in. They will not clear you over the phone as before. The options are conform with ROAM or present and be inspected. If it is your own boat then register it yourself with US Customs and get the decal in advance.

PS next time rent from us at CYOA easier access to St John and the Spanish Virgins.

Last edited by CaptainJay; 10/17/2018 08:03 AM.
Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #173346
10/25/2018 06:18 PM
10/25/2018 06:18 PM
Joined: Jan 2015
Posts: 104
Georgia
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cruzdoc Offline OP
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cruzdoc  Offline OP
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Georgia
Appreciate all the input Captain Jay. I am a Moorings owner and my boat is in St. Lucia or would probably have rented CYOA. Have heard nothing but good things as I just talked to one of your previous owners who lost his boat in (a Helia) in Irma as well.

So I am probably not going to have the info I need from the boat prior to leaving in order to obtain a US customs Decal ahead of time. Do you know if it is possible to purchase one in Cruz Bay or not or we will just have to wait until we get to Culebra and go to the airport when we clear in? I think we are going to spend night one in Culebra anyway so not a big deal but it would save us a little time. Does Culebra just need the captain to clear in or all crew to present?

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #173532
10/28/2018 10:03 AM
10/28/2018 10:03 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 54
St. Thomas, USVI
CYOACHARTERBASE Offline
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St. Thomas, USVI
These decals have to be purchased online from the CBP site here. You need the HIN, USCG Doc number and the owners data.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #174860
11/11/2018 09:26 AM
11/11/2018 09:26 AM
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Posts: 104
Georgia
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cruzdoc Offline OP
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Thanks to everyone for all the help and information. We were able to purchase a decal online once we had the Coast Guard number of our bareboat and used the transaction number to log into the ROAM app. Unfortunately, we had difficulty connecting with the video aspect of the app and ended up having to walk to the airport to present per their request. I think they thought I was bringing people over as a paid captain as opposed to just bringing friends along. Not sure if the problem was the Internet on our end or theirs but am confident we would have cleared in easily with the app had the video conferencing worked.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: cruzdoc] #181680
01/23/2019 01:54 PM
01/23/2019 01:54 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 412
BaardJ Offline
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BaardJ  Offline
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2 weeks ago we successfully used the ROAM app to clear into Culebra. The crew included US citizens and US permanent resident.

A few observations:

- The app repeatedly closed when run on a near 5-year old Samsung Galaxy S5 phone (though it had successfully run in November). The phone's memory cache was cleared, but this didn't help. May just be too slow a processor.

- Upon loading the app to a Samsung S8 phone, we got the app to run but got a repeated error message that we had not given the app permission to view our location although we set this permission to ALLOW when we loaded the app. We finally got it to work by resetting the permission to Deny, and then when we got the error message the app took us to the settings page where we reset the permission to ALLOW.

- Once we were able to submit our clearance request, it sat in the SUBMITTING queue for about 5 minutes, then we got a message that an officer was reviewing it, followed shortly by the initiation of a video conference. The officer could see us, but we only got audio from the officer.

- We selected the voluntary Verified Traveler program option on the app which resulted in a very short video conference with all onboard. Each person had to hold their passport open to the picture page alongside their face as the CBPO officer took a picture.

- The only question asked was where we planned to travel and for how long.

- Shortly after the call ended, I received an email with our clearance number and each crew received an email with their new Verified Traveler number.

Re: C&I help for USVI and SVI [Re: BaardJ] #181687
01/23/2019 02:17 PM
01/23/2019 02:17 PM
Joined: Jul 2012
Posts: 418
Apex, NC
agrimsrud Offline
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agrimsrud  Offline
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Apex, NC
Originally Posted by BaardJ


- Upon loading the app to a Samsung S8 phone, we got the app to run but got a repeated error message that we had not given the app permission to view our location although we set this permission to ALLOW when we loaded the app. We finally got it to work by resetting the permission to Deny, and then when we got the error message the app took us to the settings page where we reset the permission to ALLOW.



Baard - thanks for that! I have had the same problem (also on an S8). I will try that trick next time.


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