Go Back   Cruiser Log World Cruising & Sailing Forums > Cruising Forums > General Cruising Forum
Cruiser Wiki

Join Cruiser Log Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-14-2008, 10:50 AM   #1
Ensign
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2
Default

My wife and I are starting to plan our cruising life, the plan being to retire in 10 years time and cruise until we have had enough!!! As part of the planning one of the issues we have pondered is that of boat registration and passports.

In order to ease the pain of cruising, what are the best flags under which to sail and secondly what are the preferred passports to hold?
__________________

__________________
34South is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 11:15 AM   #2
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

For all the criticism that the U.S. receives, we found that we were treated extremely well everywhere we went. Officials treated us well, and the local shopkeepers, etc., were generally wonderful.

Keep in mind that only the officials who check you in get to see your passport, and most people don't wear their boat name on their chest so that the flag you are flying isn't going to mean anything as you walk around unless you're the only white person in the local Melanesian village.

It should be emphasized that sensitivity to the local culture and way of doing things is extremely important. Miss the cues and the flag you fly and the passport you carry will not offer any benefit. For example, proper dress is most important in Tonga. And you don't do laundry and hang it off the lifelines on Sundays. In the Solomon Islands women do not expose themselves, don't wear tight shorts, etc.

Did I feel we were treated better than we deserved? In some places, absolutely. In others, not really much difference.

Did I ever feel as if we were disliked because we were Americans? only last summer in the Baltic, when some fresh young men made a few rude comments about our country's warlike behavior in the Middle East. Nothing significant, and only as we passed in our boat. Once on land they had no way of knowing what country we were from.
__________________

__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 11:24 AM   #3
Admiral
 
Nausikaa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,619
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeanneP View Post
Did I feel we were treated better than we deserved? In some places, absolutely. In others,

Did I ever feel as if we were disliked because we were Americans? only last summer in the Baltic, when some fresh young men made a few rude comments about our country's warlike behavior in the Middle East. Nothing significant, and only as we passed in our boat.
And for that, as a Scandinavian, I apologise. I don't agree with US policy in the Middle East either but that does not codone their behavior. One can, on friendly terms, agree to disagree.

Aye // Stephen
__________________
Yacht NAUSIKAA | Call Sign: 2AJH2




WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU DID SOMETHING FOR THE FIRST TIME?

www.nausikaa.org.uk

= Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Lithuania
Nausikaa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 11:27 AM   #4
Admiral
 
MMNETSEA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,067
Default

]

Welcome 34South,

At the moment - there will be certain countries where certain yacht flags may cause a problem.

Example :- Australian boats and their crew have had difficulties in Brunei.

It could be that Venezuelan boats might have a hard time entering the US.

Boats entering Israeli waters have a problem - doesn't matter which flag.

IT depends !

What happens down the road in ten years time, I guess the same issues will apply :- what flag are you carrying and what destinations do you have in mind.

But a good question, I guess a Swiss flag, if they stay neutral - how about a Yemen flag ?

Richard
__________________
MMNETSEA is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 11:31 AM   #5
Admiral
 
Nausikaa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,619
Default

The issue is compounded by the question of which flag(s) you are entitled to fly?

Stay clear of Yemen though!

Aye // Stephen
__________________
Yacht NAUSIKAA | Call Sign: 2AJH2




WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU DID SOMETHING FOR THE FIRST TIME?

www.nausikaa.org.uk

= Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Lithuania
Nausikaa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 11:55 AM   #6
Moderator
 
JeanneP's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 2,098
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nausikaa View Post
And for that, as a Scandinavian, I apologise. I don't agree with US policy in the Middle East either but that does not codone their behavior. One can, on friendly terms, agree to disagree.
They were kids, showing off for each other more than anything else. Since my opinion of the US Mideast policy is about the same as theirs, I wasn't so much offended as interested at their cheek in railing at us as if we were the ones personally responsible for the invasion of Irag. I only mentioned it as an illustration of a rather insignificant jab at the US, not having experienced anything worse. In some places we've visited, there are other nationalities that are disliked - the Netherlands sees so many German tourists that they are the disliked group. The Canadians get their share of disdain in places, as do the French, etc., etc.

By the way, the Danish are probably the worst-mannered we've experienced. It seems as if they feel it is their duty to point out to the U.S. each and every failing that they perceive about us and our culture. Again, I was not so much offended by their cheek as amused by the blind belief in their government's propaganda. Since our daughter lives in Denmark, works for a Danish company, and is married to a Dane, we've heard it all before, both sides.
__________________
In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

SY WATERMELON |
MV WATERMELON (New) | Cruiser's Dictionary, free ebook

= Cruiser's Dictionary, North America,
JeanneP is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 04:36 PM   #7
Ensign
 
jimthomsen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 12
Default

We have only been in Western Europe and Morocco, but I think having an American flag has been a very good thing. People are interesting in talking with us, many have relatives in the USA and many are just interested. We have had a few people say that don't like Bush, but like Americans (and since we are in that same group it has usually turned out to be great discussion evenings).

Jim
__________________
Jim

tenayatravels.com
jimthomsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 04:39 PM   #8
Admiral
 
Trim50's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Home Port: Who cares really...
Vessel Name: T
Posts: 1,215
Send a message via Yahoo to Trim50
Default

It would seem to me that one should fly the flag of the country that enabled them to sail around the world freely and safely.
__________________
[
Trim50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 07:20 PM   #9
Ensign
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2
Default

Hi All

Thanks for the prompt replies. Trim50 has refined the question of vessel flag to represent what I would really like to know. So, which country meets the requirements of the refined question? Ideally the country would be completely neutral and acceptable to one and all from a social & political perspective.

WRT the passport issue, we are both South African and one of the problems I experience just travelling on holiday & business is that we often have to wait a lot longer for our visa's than other nationalities and they cost us more. We also require visa's for countries where persons from other countries do not.

We have the option to relocate to New Zealand, Australia or the UK and would then cruise as a citizen of one of these countries. Is there any reason to choose one over the other?

Wayne
__________________
34South is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 08:01 PM   #10
Retired Mod
 
Lighthouse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Home Port: Durban
Posts: 2,984
Default

But, SA passports are the "flavour of the month" just about everywhere.
__________________


The World Cruising & Sailing Wiki

Help to build this free, online World Cruising Guide.

"Built by cruisers, for cruisers''

I've Contributed to the Cruisers Wiki: Most sections
Lighthouse is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-14-2008, 08:23 PM   #11
Rear Admiral
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 437
Default

I'm certainly no expert, but...

As a U.S. Navy veteran - I love my Country... it's the Government that scares me!

I carry a US passport. My wife was born in Australia and carries that and UK passports. My son was born in St Thomas and carries US & UK passports. I often shuffle them when checking in and generally we never have any problem with any of them.

However, we've recently had issues when entering St Lucia & Trinidad when using the Ozzy passport - visas were required because "Australia has no recipical visa waver policy." But when I mentioned that she also has a UK passport everything smoothd out and we were on our jolly way in short order.

In regard to which flag one chooses to display off the back of their vessel... in my opinion... people will drop by more frequently for a chat with people they believe may speak their own language. Whenever a new boat arrives in the anchorage, we often look for which flag they fly purely for social purposes. If a boat arrives with no flag I usually wait for them to strike up a conversation.

Long gone are the days of displaying your colors while lighting cannon fuses on the high seas. And in these modern times of radio communications, I personally believe that symbols of national affiliation are of little more value than to draw attention to yourself.

But I may be wrong.

To Life!

Kirk
__________________
Gallivanters is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2008, 01:22 AM   #12
Admiral
 
Trim50's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Home Port: Who cares really...
Vessel Name: T
Posts: 1,215
Send a message via Yahoo to Trim50
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by 34South View Post
Trim50 has refined the question of vessel flag to represent what I would really like to know. So, which country meets the requirements of the refined question? Ideally the country would be completely neutral and acceptable to one and all from a social & political perspective.
Certainly not what I intended

I simply feel that you flag your vessel with your allegiance...not with the whim of world politics. I have heard of some San Franciscans flying the flag of the UN. This however, does not come as much of a surprise after having lived in the smug atmosphere of Northern California.
__________________
[
Trim50 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2008, 03:50 AM   #13
Admiral
 
Nausikaa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,619
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trim50 View Post
I have heard of some San Franciscans flying the flag of the UN
Which brings us back to the point I made earlier about which flag you have the right to fly.

One cannot just choose a flag to register a vessel under, although there are some exceptions such as Panama, Honduras etc. These are so called flag of convenience states. The usual minimum requirement is that you reside in the country whose flag your vessel flies and the vessel is registered there or that you are a citizen of that country.

Registering a vessel places certain obligations upon the owner/master but also entitles you to the "protection" of the flag state. In this day and age the "protection" bit is conveniently forgotten by flag states. If it was not then the Gulf of Aden would be full of foreign warships looking after yachts and other vessels. The obligation bit remains though. For example, a South African, living in that country with a boat built in that country and flying the SA flag is free to visit Europe (ok, he will need a visa for mainland Europe). However, if his/her boat is UK registered then the European Small Craft Directive boots in, as does the magic of VAT (value added tax)

There is more to think of than just which flag is the prettiest to adorn my yacht.

Back to the point I made of which flag you have the right to fly.

The Claifornians, like everyone else, have no right to fly the UN flag as a national ensign unless perhaps they hold UN diplomatic/service passports and the boat was on UN duties.

As far as 34South is concerned, the original question has been to a very large extent answered by yourself. It is not a case of "which flag is best" any longer but which of the three you mentioned, UK, NZ or Oz would be best? WHich of the three, you must ask yourself, do you have the right to fly? Assuming the answer is all three then my choice, all else being equal, would be for NZ as the country is small, far from anywhere and does not annoy other countries (except when it comes to rugby). The point of language is not relevant, unless you want to chat in Afrikaans, as all three are English speaking countries with similar cultural heritage.

Aye // Stephen
__________________
Yacht NAUSIKAA | Call Sign: 2AJH2




WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU DID SOMETHING FOR THE FIRST TIME?

www.nausikaa.org.uk

= Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Lithuania
Nausikaa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-15-2008, 05:23 AM   #14
Admiral
 
MMNETSEA's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 3,067
Default

Returning to our Member 34south's original question :- " what are the best flags under which to sail in 10 years time??"

The answer to that question - could be ; the flags that will give the least hassle in specific foreign waters in 10 years time.

Therefore rolling the clock forward to 2018, and if the rules haven't changed then register the boat in a country that is regarded as friendly to the countries of planned destination. As it is where the boat is registered that shall determine which national flag shall be flown.

Some extracted rules on Flag Etiquette :-

The National Ensign

The national ensign worn by a vessel must be the flag of her registry—not necessarily that of the owner or operator.

Generally, the national ensign should be displayed at the peak of the gaff, i.e., the outer end of the spar extending aft from the mast of your boat—if you boat has a gaff. If it does not, fly it from the flagstaff at your boat's stern. If your boat has an overhanging boom or an outboard motor, your flagstaff may be offset to starboard (preferably) from your boat's centerline.

Marconi-rigged sailboats may fly the ensign from the leech of the aftermost sail (or from the back stay), approximately 2/3 the distance up its length. This puts it in about the same position it would occupy if the boat were gaff-rigged.

At anchor or made fast, the ensign should be flown from the stern staff of all boats

Yacht Club Burgee

Generally triangular in shape, although sometimes swallow-tailed, the yacht club burgee contains a unique design symbolic of the organization represented. If you boat is a mastless or single-masted yacht, fly your burgee from the bow staff. Boats without a bow staff should wear a burgee at the truck of a single-master yacht. On the other hand, if the truck is occupied with instruments or other conflicting gear, a pigstick can be affixed to a halyard so as to carry a flag above the truck. Alternatively, the burgee may be worn at a spreader halyard. If your boat has two or more masts, fly your burgee at the truck of the forward mast. Do not display more than one burgee at a time. The burgee your boat wears should be that of the group in whose activity you are participating, or whose harbor you are entering, if you are a member of that group. Otherwise, fly the burgee of your home organization. Each yacht club usually has rules that determine when their burgee should be flown.

Owner's Private Signal



This is a personal flag, often called house flag. It is usually swallow-tailed, designed by the individual owner to depict a personal interest, hobby, family tradition, initials, or the like. A private signal should be a unique design and always in good taste. It should not include or be the ensign of a foreign country, nor duplicate a design previously adopted by someone else.

Courtesy Flags

When you visit foreign water, your boat should display a courtesy flag (the civil ensign of the country you are visiting) whenever your national ensign is displayed.

If your vessel has one or more masts, display the "courtesy flag" single-hoisted at the outboard signal halyard of the main starboard spreader. Move any flag normally flown there to the inboard starboard halyard or, if your boat has only one halyard per side, to the port spreader halyard.

The customs observed in various foreign waters differ from one another. Try to learn the correct procedure for the country you are entering. For example, is some countries it is customary to fly the courtesy flag only after the quarantine flag (the yellow 'Q' flag) and the vessel has been granted pratique by the appropriate authorities.

Do not fly a foreign courtesy flag after you have returned to your own Country's waters. It is not to be used as a badge of accomplishment for having cruised to another country.

Foreign Guest Flags

When a foreign guest is aboard, you may display the ensign of the guest's country from the bow staff or outboard port spreader. Should more than one such guest flag be appropriate, wear them on spreader halyards

Size of Flags

Flags are often too small. When your purchase your flags, use the following guidelines, rounding up to the next larger commercially available size when necessary.

The national ensign flown at a flag staff at the stern of your boat should be one inch on the fly for each foot of overall length.

All other flags such as club burgees, officer flags, and private signals for use on sailboats should be approximately 1/2 inch on the fly for each foot above the waterline of the tallest mast on the boat. (That is, if the tope of the mast is 30 feet above the waterline, these other flags should be 15 inches on the fly.) On powerboats, these flags should be 5/8 inch on the fly for each foot of overall length. The shape and proportions of pennants and burgees will be prescribed by the organization to which they relate. A union jack should be the same size as the canton of the national ensign being flown from the flag staff.

Many foreign ensigns—courtesy flags—sold in stores are not manufactured to correct proportions. For instance, the flags of all former British Commonwealth countries, including Canada, Bermuda, the Bahamas, and the British Virgin Islands, are correctly proportioned 1:2, i.e., the fly is twice the length of the hoist. As a matter of interest, the United States flag is correctly proportioned 10:19 (nearly 1:2), not 3:5 as is commonly available.

BRITISH FLAG ETIQUETTE

The Red Ensign … is still the flag of the merchant fleet, and is the flag that should be flown by British owned vessels. Its use on pleasure craft is, only optional in UK waters, but in most foreign waters one would normally be expected to fly it.

There are still regulations in force requiring vessels flying an ensign to fly the Red Ensign. Flying other flags (such as the Union Flag, the Saltire, The Jolly Roger, the Cross of St George or a pair of ladies undies) in the position normally occupied by the Red Ensign can lead to a prosecution and a fine not exceeding, in UK 1000. Fines can be even heavier in foreign waters. Two years ago, the yachting press had several reports of British skippers being heavily fined in French sea-side courts for flying improper flags.

The White Ensign … is the flag flown by Royal Navy warships.

In addition, since 1829 an Admiralty Warrant has been in existence permitting vessels owned by members of the Royal Yacht Squadron (RYS) to fly the White Ensign. The RYS is a private yacht club and is the premier yacht club in Britain. It gained the 'Royal' title in 1820 whilst the Prince Regent (later George IV) was a member.

The Blue Ensign … is the flag flown by Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels.

In addition, vessels belonging to the members of certain designate yacht clubs may also be issued with a warrant permitting them to fly a defaced Blue Ensign - the defacement being a device often associated with the badge of the club. If flying the Blue Ensign, the vessel is also required to fly the burgee of the relevant yacht club.

------------------------

P.S. as a member of the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club - before the takeover of Hong Kong by China - I flew the defaced Blue Ensign plus the club burgee Royal_H_K_YC_Burgee.jpg . On the 30th June 1997 it was taken down at sundown, furled forever - a toast with a wee dram and a tear in the eye.
__________________

__________________
MMNETSEA is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
ports


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Uk Flag Etiquette Nausikaa General Cruising Forum 5 05-17-2010 07:04 PM
Cruiserslog Flag Qldcruiser The Tavern | Welcome Aboard 1 03-29-2009 08:40 AM
Vessel Lost On Way To Marquesas? Trim50 General Cruising Forum 0 06-21-2007 04:37 PM
Renaming a vessel clay1diver General Cruising Forum 8 10-03-2006 09:20 PM
passports. . hangfire General Cruising Forum 4 04-19-2006 07:51 AM

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

RV & Travel Trailer Communities

Our RV & Travel Trailer sites encompasses virtually all types of Recreational Vehicles, from brand-specific to general RV communities.

» More about our RV Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


All times are GMT. The time now is 10:27 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0