It is easy to get ahead of oneself when you go hunting for a dream yacht job. But before you get carried away, stop to consider all the paper work that needs to be completed, including visa applications. Your crew member’s visa is the ticket to working on a luxury yacht in some of the planet’s most beautiful destinations. Depending on your nationality and the location of the yacht you will need the appropriate visas.
If a crew member fails to produce the right visa, this can lead to a yacht being detained. Therefore, you have to make sure you have taken care of that. Read on for visa advice from crewing agency experts at YPI Crew.
Firstly, it is important to note that a yacht may be detained if it is harbouring any crew without the necessary visa. As much as the paperwork may be tedious, the risks are too great to ignore the need to have correct documentation. This is particularly pertinent given the rise in the number of Port State Control inspections as of August 2013, per the MLC 2006.
Crew on board a superyacht destined for the United States must provide evidence of a B1 visa (visitor for business), or a B2 visa (visitor for pleasure). Meanwhile, Australia provides crew visiting its shores with a superyacht specific visa. According to Australia’s Department of Immigration and Citizenship, the superyacht crew visa permits crew members on board vessels based in Australia to work for the duration of one year.
Elsewhere, a Schengen Visa is required for all those non-EU members hoping to work in the EU or the Schengen region. Australian, U.S. and Canadian citizens, however, merely need their passport for access to EU shores. These three particular countries benefit from a visa-free agreement with the Schengen region. Other nationalities can use the Schengen visa to visit the region (including the Mediterranean) for a maximum of 90 days. Hopeful applicants can apply for an extension to that, with different documents necessary for different ports of embarkation.
Ordinarily, the application process requires several steps before obtaining a crew member visa. These vary depending on the embassy or consulate you apply at. Generally speaking, all candidates must complete the standardised online visa application, gather the required documentation (passport, non-immigrant visa application confirmation form and photo identification) and attend an interview. Those interested in crew jobs on superyachts heading for countries requiring visas should inform their crew agencies, which would advise them on the paperwork required.
While the application process is rigorous, the rewards are great. There are few better experiences than joining a crew on superyachts in some of the most extraordinary locations in the world.