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benduffin 04-14-2006 10:01 PM

Visas for brazil and caribbean
Hi I am a british national planning my first trans atlantic sail. Hoping to leave the uk around october.

The skipper is planning on sailing south to madiera/cape verdes/brazil. And slowly working north to the caribbean. I do not yet know if i will be returning to the uk with him or trying to find someone going through the canal and to the pacific.

I will not be sure i have a place on this boat untill after a shakedown cruise in august. So i do not want to start preparing in case i cant go.

My question is what visas or other permits do i need to go to these countries? Does it matter that i will have less than two months before setting off to arrange them? Is there anything i should be doing now?

Thanks for any help you can offer...


JeanneP 04-14-2006 10:26 PM

this is too complicated to answer on here. Several suggestions. First, you can go to and check each of the countries you expect to visit, they normally give current and detailed information about what is needed. Once at the site, go to "countries" and select what country you need information for. Then click on "formalities" or "immigration" and read carefully. For example, for Brazil EU countries don't need a visa if you are flying in, but it mentions that most places insist on everyone coming in by private yacht have a visa. Further on, visas are only good for 3 months after issuance.

Another resource is each of the countries' web page, which should (but will not necessarily do so) give you current information about requirements, etc.

for general information, you can try the CIA world factbook, though it is numbers and info. that most cruisers aren't particularly interested in.

Also, Lonely Planet guides - most in your library, also on line, and you can check out the Thorn Tree forum - I like to go through them, there is a lot of information close to the ground, since lots of backpackers use this resource.

Alain POIRAUD 04-14-2006 10:40 PM


Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
[i] what visas or other permits do i need to go to these countries?


Hi Ben,

Madeira: is a part of the European community.. No problem, even for British poeple..>/tongue.gif

Cape Verde: You should arrive in the bay of Palmeira on SAL island. You can make the formality there and you will be granted a tourist visa of 3 months.. Same if you arrive in Mindello. (they will keep the papers of the boat)

Brazil; If you make a stop in the Fernando de Nonroha island, no formalities there, you just have to declare the boat at the capitaieria (and to pay>/sad.gif) then you can go to Brazil - Cabedelo (one marina there and the manager Brian (british) is very friendly and will help you)

You will automatically get a 3 months visa that you can renew once (3 more months) and after, you (and your boat) have to leave the country for another 6 months.

Have a nice crossing..

Jack Tyler 04-27-2006 03:13 PM


Are you saying you arrived in Brazil without a visa and found clearing in to not be a problem? That's quite a surprise and the first time I've heard of this not presenting a problem. Could you tell, perhaps from comments Brian made, if they've recently changed their immigration rules? The last couple who arrived there without a visa ended up leaving after 2 weeks of being in 'limbo', concluding that the officials didn't want to deal with non-visa arrivals but weren't sure what the alternative was.


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