Here is a list of documents you will either need to bring or provide upon arrival in a new country

1) Original Vessel Documentation ( up to date not expired )

2) Valid and unexpired Passport(s) – – some countries may refuse you entry if the expiration date is in not less than 6 months ( go to CREW for details on bringing crew )

3) Most marinas will require insurance – best to get some –  minimum for staying in marinas is 3rd party liability insurance

4) Zarpes – Clearances and other bona fide’s ( port captains will issue these for detailed procedures go to )

5) Your Mexican T.I.P. – get that in Chiapas, Ensenada, or Cancun or temporary import permits for every country – do not skip customs when you check in !

6) if you are vessel is documented under a corporate vessel ownership  you need a  notarized document stating that you are authorized to operate this vessel.
If your vessel is under a trust there are several countries which will make your life a living hell as they do not recognize trusts per say.
Contact your maritime attorney for details

7) You will need a USCG registration for US vessels – state registration may work but will NOT work in Panama – so be sure that you have USCG documentation.

8) if you plan to check out of Mexico you will need some type of proof of proficiency  – a online California boating certificate at minimum or a captains license – yachtmaster certificate on the high end

9) If you sail with pet’s – all the docs you can muster plus more – vaccination certificates – 15 digit international chips under their skin – rabies vaccination certificate  . etc etc.

10 Prescriptions for controlled medication – you can get most meds over the counter nut specific meds best to carry your scripts

11) Vaccination Record ( Covid ) – while this may not be necessary everywhere, having a Covid vaccination record can
– ease your entries if Covid makes a comeback
– cheaper (no test fees )
– smoother ( agents will assist but with a lot of back and forth }
– this may also avoid wrinkles associated with non- vaccinated individuals.

In other words you can come non-vaccinated, but any and all delays obstacles and restrictions, additional fees, paperwork etc etc are on you and your crew and we will reduce mitigating any issues which may/can/might/will arise,  if these issues are related to not being vaccinated.

12) COURTESY FLAGS & Q FLAG ( while not technically documents they are required especially in Nicaragua  even if you  are not stopping and under innocent passage – they are available from amazon HERE IS THE LINK ON AMAZON FOR THE FULL MONTY





Here are 2 documents related to OpenCPN




DAN Boater (boating accident) (take from ship to nearest hospital/medical facility; limitation on amount but might get you all the way home). This is an annual membership fee service.
Emergency +1-919-667-9111
Information +1-919-490-2011

MEDJET Expat 180 Family Membership (any medical condition)(take from hospital/medical facility in foreign country to your home in U.S.). This is an annual membership fee service.
+1 205-595-6626
There are a number of Medical repatriation companies. Check your boat insurance, policy carefully as some policies do not contain any or sufficient medical repatriation expense.
Medjet and DAN Boater provide emergency information. There are a number of companies on the internet that are pay as you go and do not require that you purchase a membership that provide emergency information.

MHZ UTC time
4.125 2300-11
6.125 24 hr.
8.290 24 hr.
12.290 1100-2300

001 310 732 2046
World wide emergency Ham net: 14.313 24 hr.
Central America Ham net: 7.083 UTC time 1300


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