Posted By: Will_L

Immigration - 03/15/2017 12:20 AM

Since the last thread on the subject went so well and the BVI discussion here has slowed down quite a bit from prior years I will add another example of silliness. A good friend of mine with a business in the BVI told me that an arriving ferry had some guests of a crewed charter aboard. They saw the captain of their charter coming into the dock. He waved back. C&I charged the captain of the crewed charter with "communicating with immigrants before clearing customs" and wanted him to sign a document admitting guilt and to pay 15,000 $ fine. He refused.. Then they wanted to impound the dinghy, he refused. A couple days later he signed an admission of guilt, with a $1500.00 fine which was waved. The Charter association got involved. . It's ongoing and the tourist board is also involved. Totally stupid and happening on the same weekend ..last weekend.. that there were two murders on Tortola. At the risk of rattling cages, there is nothing like that happening to legal visitors to the U.S. Or anyone waving at the boat they arrive on.
Posted By: Manpot

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 12:47 AM

Try the same thing in SXM and see what happens..had a terrible experience there with immigration..
Posted By: Will_L

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 12:54 AM

I don't know what other third world countries do. I simply know it doesn't happen here and it should not happen in the BVI or any tourist dependent country. Waving back at guests waving at you is not a $15,000 fine sort of violation.
Posted By: YachtReprise

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 02:45 AM

Just to lighten the mood...

A few years ago I flew into St. Kitts from I forget where. But it was a very small plane. My passport, and all of my other important stuff was in my modest carry-on.

At the door of the plane, the pilot (there was no other cabin crew) said that the plane couldn't accommodate any more carry-on, so he'll 'throw it in back'. No problem.....EXCEPT that my bag wasn't given back to me on the tarmac at St. Kitts...but taken with the other checked luggage inside the terminal.

I had no passport to give the immigration guy, and even though we both could SEE MY BAG at the baggage claim, I couldn't get it because I hadn't cleared immigration.

The little plane was long gone, and it was the end of the day. Besides my onward ticket was of course also in my bag.

I tried to make my case in a calm, reasonable fashion...but no deal. No immigration means no customs, and no bag.

I was traveling alone, so I just settled in on the floor and waited for them to sort it out.

After a couple of hours, a very irritated immigration guy gave me a proper (incomprehensible) lecture, and allowed me to proceed to my bag...but only to retrieve my passport.

I thanked everyone for their help and skedaddled!
Posted By: HillsideView

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 02:45 PM

Apparently the C&I on Virgin Gorda also turned around several Secret Service personnel and sent them packing as they arrived for Obama's visit. I was not a witness to this but it was relayed by several reliable sources.
Posted By: Manpot

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 03:02 PM

Posted By: Cleobeach

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 04:22 PM

A few years back, my husband was hired to do a quick job in the Turks & Cacios Islands.

This all happened very quickly and having vacationed there as well as knowing some local business owners, we knew Immigration and work permits were no joke. We had doubts the whole thing would come together in time. The person who hired hubby assured him all would be ok, he would take care of the permit.

Fast forward a few days, we arrive in Provo to the typical entry questions. My hubby barely got the "b" syllable out before the agent #1 jumped off his stool and another ran over to bar our progress as if we were going to make a run for it.

Agent #3 hears the commotion and leans back on his chair, yelling out of his tiny stall "is that the ABC man? Here is his permit" waving an envelop with hubby's name on it.

Agent#1 and #2 seemed very disappointed that hubby was indeed legal and allowed to enter the country.
Posted By: GlennA

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 06:35 PM

I almost got refused entry in Bermuda first visit to install a computer system for a local real estate firm. They stuck me in a little room to wait for the next return flight back to ATL. After a couple of hours there was a big commotion outside the room and my client walked in. He happened to be the Premier. <img src="" alt="" />
Posted By: Call_me_Ishmael

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 06:54 PM

I went to Bermuda to get on my boat and deliver it to the USVI, joining my buddy who sailed there from Canada. Apparently, the process requires you to write a letter to the Immigration department on your boat's official letterhead (!) months in advance for government approval. All of the megayacht skippers had these letters on file when they arrived. I didn't know this, so when I was ushered into the office I just looked confused. They were pissed that Air Canada had even let me on the plane, apparently they are supposed to check for this before boarding?

I sat there for 20 minutes with the customs lady chewing me out for being such a wastrel and sternly informing me that I'd have to sit there for the next 23 hours whereupon they would ship me back on the next plane leaving for Canada. Eventually she decided that doing the deportation paperwork was too much of a pain, and just let me in.
Posted By: Manpot

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 06:58 PM

Went through the same nightmare in St Martin..soured me totally on the island..the officer was a full blown..nasty lady who would not help in any way and was furious when I finally got out of there to help Garvey bring his boat back to the BVI's..and then there's Montgomery at Immigration in STT...
Posted By: Cleobeach

Re: Immigration - 03/15/2017 11:18 PM

Manpot said:
Went through the same nightmare in St Martin..soured me totally on the island..the officer was a full blown..nasty lady who would not help in any way and was furious when I finally got out of there to help Garvey bring his boat back to the BVI's..and then there's Montgomery at Immigration in STT...

It certainly can. We encountered an officer at a Canadian border crossing point that was so awful, I actually became scared. He peppered us with questions about gun ownership, refused to believe we weren't carrying Tabaco or booze. It's not that I objected to being asked about restricted items, it's the power trip he got on after we answered honestly. His questioning went on and on and on.

I come from a military family, I have family members in law enforcement and I have total respect for people doing difficult jobs but this crossed into an area where I felt he was looking for a reason to escalate the situation.

I travelled back and forth from East Germany in the 80s with my father, a German war refugee who became an American citizen so I know from difficult and stressful border crossings. I just never expected it as a middle aged mom going on a family vacay to Ontario. We are going again in May and I am already dreading the crossing.
Posted By: sailbynight

Re: Immigration - 03/16/2017 01:13 AM

The officials in St Maarten have softened to the times. The whole process has become much easier.

In nearly every country, anyone wishing to join or leave a foreign-flagged boat, has restrictions related to every step. Basically, the local government gives permission for the boat to enter and cruise.

Changes in visitors or guest must be registered. To join a boat, one must show proof of entry. To leave a boat, the captain must sign that guest or crew member off of the boat and prove onward passage.

Currently, most crew are allowed to stay and work on the yacht without any additional permits in most countries
Posted By: socamon

Re: Immigration - 03/16/2017 10:12 AM

Seems some immigration officials get off on abusing their power. Makes them feel important.
Posted By: Manpot

Re: Immigration - 03/16/2017 12:21 PM

Bingo Socamom..its a shame..on the other hand the folks at WE Immigration have been very pleasant recently..not sure why all this childish muscle vexing but , what seems to be, a tiny minority..but God help you if you land in front of them!
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