When a foreign yacht arrives in Turkey, better said, in a Turkish Marina, the owner or the captain should obtain a transit log and complete the check-in formalities. The transit log can be purchased at any Marina’s reception. The check-in formalities can be done by the owner, the captain or by a professional agent, meaning that he must be accredited somehow by an authority. In Turkey everybody tends to act like an agent, because they have the trade in their blood.
In the transit log, one has to enter information regarding the yacht details, crew, guests, and intended routes in Turkey, passport details, an inventory list and others.
The transit log is actually a set of forms, considered officially as a declaration.
It must be declared when the yacht entered the Turkish territorial waters and when the yacht intends to leave, any changes regarding the crew, the guests, the inventory or the cruising intentions, or if the yacht will be left in custom bond.
If the owner came alone with his yacht and wants to leave Turkey without her, he has to place the boat in custom bond. Any documentation must be completed at the marina’s reception, at least a day before the departure, along with the transit log clearly completed, and identity papers in hand. One must not move around without identity papers in Turkey.
Leaving the boat in custom bond, makes the inventory one of the most important forms in the transit log. Everything one leaves on board, especially the expensive stuff, must be checked, noted and double checked again. The engine serial number must correspond, of course.
If you can not find the engine number, the block number will do, it’s Turkey, after all, but it must be visible on the engine, otherwise one may claim that they have changed your main engine.
Once the boat is bonded, none of the articles in the inventory list can be removed from the boat until the boat is released from bond.
When one takes his/her boat out of custom bond, she will be checked according to the inventory list produced to bond the boat.
The documents needed to take the boat out of custom bond are as follow:
owner’s or captain’s passport;
a new transit log filled in advance;
ownership registration (the name of the owner must be obvious on the papers);
delegation papers if the person who checked the yacht out of bond is not the owner;
captain must have a delegation from the owner as well!
The delegation document should include the owner’s and captain’s identification details, an explanation to the authority the delegate is empowered, owner’s signature, or if there are more than one, all the owners’ signatures.
The delegation should be translated in Turkish and authorized by a public Turkish notary. Also, if the delegation was made abroad, a Turkish Consulate will keep the place of the notary.
A foreign yacht is allowed to stay in Turkey for five years without leaving the territorial waters and another two years in custom bond. Before the end of any of these periods, one should take the boat out of the border, after the boat has been taken out of the custom bond.
One must not throw out these documents, especially the ones from the Harbor Master and Custom’s Office! One never knows when something on the way of leaving Turkey may happen or has to be proven.
Something funny is that if the owner is not on board and the checking out has been made by a delegate, a $50 fee is compulsory just for transiting Turkish waters, on top of the other $60 charged twice, for the in and out of bond checking. It is not quite much, they took care of your boat when in bond, at least, theoretically.
These taxes may be changed without further notice, and that’s actually the funny thing in all I’m saying here.
Otherwise, a Turkish Marina fees list sample, has been described in a previous post. Information in this article is compiled from memory, based on my experience and some directives from a Harbor Book of Regulations.
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