2022 IGY Marinas Global Directory

SOUTH OF FRANCE Arrival & Departure Information


CLEARING OUT An EU boat with all EU citizens on board going to another EU country does not need to officially clear out. If leaving the EU, then the skipper should the check local regulations and, if possible, obtain a ‘zarpe’ or other official clearance document, to show that they legally left their previous destination when arriving in a new country. This is normally issued by Customs. A non EU boat leaving the Schengen Area needs to have that recorded with Customs even if moving to another EU country. Any non-EU crew are advised to report to Immigration. This is especially important if they are leaving the Schengen Area. PETS Animals are accepted from within the EU and which have an EU pet Passport. All cats and dogs must be microchipped and have an anti-rabies vaccination certificate (dated at least 30 days in advance and for it to have been administered at least 21 days after the microchip was inserted), as specified in the PETS travel scheme. Rabies vaccinations administered by a veterinary practitioner not authorized by an EU country will render the EU Pet Passport invalid for travel. If entering from outside the EU and from a country on the ‘High risk’ list, then a Health Certificate from a veterinarian and other requirements must be complied with.

Yachts must carry their original registration document, insurance policy and ship’s radio license. For British yachts, the French authorities will accept the SSR document. They are very strict about registration certificates, and some boats have been fined for not having a satisfactory document. One member of the crew must have a radio operator’s certificate of competence. For EU boats, proof of VAT status is also required. There are various canals which cross France, still used by commercial traffic as well as yachts. All vessels using the inland waterways and canals must be in possession of a valid VNF sticker (Voies Navigables de France), which can be bought for an entire year or shorter periods. As a member of the European Union, EU regulations apply. In principle therefore boats coming from another EU country do not have to clear Customs, although they have to report to Immigration. The situation is more relaxed when the traffic is between EU countries that have adhered to the Schengen Agreement, so boats sailing to France from Spain or Italy are not required to clear Immigration. The situation is different for non-EU boats, or those with non-EU nationals on board. In such cases, on arrival in France, the captain should report to Customs at a Port of Entry with the ship’s registration papers and passports. In some places Customs will visit the boat on arrival. Customs may also inspect yachts up to 12 miles off the coast. The port captain should be contacted immediately on arrival in a marina or port, and he will call Customs. Alternatively, the skipper should phone the Customs office himself. In some ports, officials will visit the boat (whether from the EU or not), as soon as it docks and inspect all documents (passports, boat documents, Certificates of Competence etc.) They may also inspect the equipment on board.

Clearance formalities vary greatly from country to country and change periodically. Please make sure to review the customs and immigration for any port of entry that you are considering. The information here is to be used as a general guide and IGY Marinas is not responsible for any issues regarding entry.





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