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Old 10-12-2011, 11:40 AM   #1
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Hello! Here are Katrin & Korbinian, a young couple on the way to south america. we'd love to hitchhike a boat to cross the atlantic... in order to do that, there is some things we need to know, that we didnt find clear informations about so far..

- Which Harbours on the Canarians (or Portugal, Spain?) do most of the private Sailors leave from???

- Which countries of the caribbean (or the amerivcan continents) do most of the boats arrive in?

Do we need to apply for a Visa beforehand? (we have both german nationality)

- Do we need a health insurance to go on a boat?

- Is it possible to join a crew spontaniously at the harbour? what documents are needed?

- Do we need to bring special sailing gear or are most of the boats equipped for their passengers? (life vests... waterproof clothes etc. what is needed?)

Have anyone of you experience with taking hitchhikers on boats? I would be happy if you could give us some answers.

Thanks a lot for sharing your experience!!!

happy sails-

kadi and korbi
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:47 PM   #2
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Sorry for the delay.

Most of the answers to your questions can be found in the Cruising Wiki.

Yacht Crewing Information on the WIKI
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Old 10-18-2011, 04:47 PM   #3
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... here are some answers on nthe more specific questions:

Quote:
Originally Posted by kadi View Post

Hello! Here are Katrin & Korbinian, a young couple on the way to south america. we'd love to hitchhike a boat to cross the atlantic... in order to do that, there is some things we need to know, that we didnt find clear informations about so far..

- Which Harbours on the Canarians (or Portugal, Spain?) do most of the private Sailors leave from???

The traditionally best place for departure is ┬*Gran Canaria. Most boats leave from Las Palmas, some other harbours on the south coast of Las Palmas are Mogan, Puerto Rico or maybe Pasito Planco. The best time is November.

- Which countries of the caribbean (or the amerivcan continents) do most of the boats arrive in?

Do we need to apply for a Visa beforehand? (we have both german nationality)

Everything is possible: Barbados, St. Lucia, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Antigua... ┬*Some like it more south like Grenada ┬*(what we did) ┬*or Trinidad & Tobago.

Visa: It's most unlikely that you need a visa if you are just 'visiting'. But the captain/owner of the boat you hitch hike on has to put you on his crew list. And if you want to leave the boat at your destination, you have to be taken off the crew list and in this moment the immigration officials will see a proof that you are able to leave the country : a flight ticket, ┬*sufficient money to leave the country or you are on a crew list of another yacht.┬*

Visitors (limited time of stay, not seeking for work in the country etc...) may not need a visa beforehand, but permission of entry will be only granted by the immigration if you can come up with one of the above mentioned proofs (member of a crew, flight ticket or enough funds...)

Click here ┬* for an overview (in greman) where you need a visa and where not, but at the end┬* you should also check with the nations embassies for actual information.┬*

- Do we need a health insurance to go on a boat?

Depends on your age and on the risk you want to cope with. I never heard of an owner/skipper of a yacht that wanted to see ┬*a valid health insurance paper.┬*

On the other hand it always makes sence to have a health insurance that is valid beyond the time span of a 'normal' travel vacation as regular (and quite cheap) travel insurances cover just up to 6 weeks or so. And as you will be travelling extensively (more than those 6 weeks) outside of Europe your (supposedly) german health insurance won't cover the risk.

┬*Click here ┬*for a (german) provider of a long term health insurance for extended travel - there might be other offers elswere in other countries, though.

┬*- Is it possible to join a crew spontaniously at the harbour? ┬*┬* what documents are needed?

Yes. Ask an owner/skipper. Maybe he or she likes you and you are part of the crew!┬*

Documents: Valid passports (visa, if necessary). And you should have some proof that you are able to be taken off the crew list once you are at your destination, otherwise the skipper/owner will legally be responsible for your whereabouts as ┬*long as you are in the country. Keep in mind: if the Yacht will leave and during immigrations check out procedure you and your passport is no longer part of the crew, the owner/skipper might be in some trouble...

- Do we need to bring special sailing gear or are most of the boats equipped for their passengers? (life vests... waterproof clothes etc. what is needed?)

As JeanneP already mentioned: here is alot of info: Yacht Crewing Information on the WIKI

Have anyone of you experience with taking hitchhikers on boats? I would be happy if you could give us some answers.

Thanks a lot for sharing your experience!!!

happy sails-

kadi and korbi
Take care!

Uwe

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