US Virgin Islands

Submitted by Jim Lott
US Virgin Islands (and Puerto Rico) Persons travelling to any US territory on private vessels must hold a US visa. The ESTA (visa waiver), which many travellers to USA obtain on-line is not accepted. However, a person with only an ESTA is able to enter the USVI from the BVI using an ESTA and then join a yacht. The USVI has largely recovered from hurricane damage. Many anchorages require the use of moorings to protect the seabed with anchoring permitted only when all the moorings are occupied. We have found that the officials in US territories are very polite and helpful. We have been in and out of US mainland and islands many times and we always found that all officials were extremely helpful and easy to deal with. We made a point of being pleasant and polite and whenever we had an issue (such as a cruising permit that was going to expire) we contacted the officials well in advance to explain the situation.

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