CHANGES 38: Beam-to seas are the worst for cats, but wouldn't Precious Metal be rolling quite a bit in beam seas, too? P.B. Yeah, my boat rolls in beam seas and I don't like that either. Doing a major ocean crossing in serious seas is the only time I'd prefer a monohull. And the truth is that most cruisers spend 90% of their time at anchor or sailing in relatively smooth seas. I think multihulls are the right boats for tropical waters, while farther south and north, I think monohulls are best. For one thing, it's hard to find moorage for a cat in the northern latitudes. Secondly, people don't live on boats as much in the north, so monohulls still make sense. 38: You still like the tropics? P.B. I love the tropics, and I love the cruising life! I'm also doing a lot of work on behalf of the oceans. My personal passion is to raise awareness about the crises the oceans face in terms of garbage, overfishing, climate change, acidity, dead zones, water temperatures and other serious stuff. I'm about to leave for the Toronto Boat Show to speak about it. 38: Thank you for your time. — latitude/rs 01/15/2014 Europe Has Nothing On Mexico More Bureaucrats Gone Wild Lest anyone think that Mexico's recent self-destructive 'auditing' of foreignowned boats was a unique governmental brain fart, consider the oppressive situation for foreign mariners wanting to cruise — and spread money — in 'Schnegen Area' countries. What countries constitute the Schnegen Area? It's actually quite simple: "Twenty-two of the 28 European Union (EU) member states, and all four European Free Trade Association (EFTA)
Missing a swim in Capri's famous Blue Grotto because of Schnegen Treaty limitations on foreign cruisers would be a shame.
member states. Of the six EU members that do not form part of the Schnegen Area, four — Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania — are legally obliged to join the area, while the other two — Ireland (reluctantly) and the United Kingdom — are opt-outs. Four non-members of the EU, but members of EFTA — Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland — participate, while three European microstates — Monaco, San Marino, and the Vatican — are de facto parts of the Schnegen Area." Got that? Maybe it would be easier if we listed the countries close to but not part of the Schnegen Area. These would include the United Kingdom, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, Albania, Montenegro, and the cruising paradise of Croatia — although Croatia joins the Schnegen Area next year. In other words, if you're an American who wants to cruise the western Med, you've got a big Schnegen problem. The idea behind the Schnegen Treaty was to allow citizens of all 26 Schnegen countries free passage to and in all Schnegen countries. Wonderful! The problem is that the same treaty prohibits nationals of non-Schnegen countries from staying in Schnegen countries for more than 90 days in any 180-day period. The mariners primarily affected are from the 'Schnegen-friendly' countries of the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, and South Africa. While in St. Barth, we met the owners of two very nice Northern California yachts who are very interested in taking their boats to the Med. But given the shocking limitations on their potential visits — "That's impossible; you must not understand the law," said one — it would make cruising in the Med difficult if not out of the question. The terms for boats themselves aren't anywhere as severe. Boats can be kept in the 26 countries for 18 months. With documentation that they've been taken out of the area for just one day, they can be brought back in for another 18 months. There are a couple of potential ways to try to work around the problem. The most reliable way is to get a Resident Permit in advance. But this can be difficult unless you can prove you have a fixed address, which would be hard if you were cruising
around on your boat. Another tactic has been to alternate spending three months in Schnegen countries and three months outside them. But for people who want to enjoy a leisurely summer cruising from, for example, Spain to France to Italy, it would require two unwanted trips across the Med to either Morocco or Tunisia. It's no big deal crossing from southern Spain to Morocco, but if you cross from any of the other parts of Spain, France or Italy, particularly in the spring or fall, you could be in for a lot of unpleasantness. What a ridiculous situation! If anybody could explain how making life miserable for visiting affluent non-Schnegeners in any way benefits Schnegeners, we'd like to hear it. Having come to the realization that draconian 'visa' restrictions on nonSchnegen mariners make no sense, members of the European Commission
The May 2014 issue of the West's premier sailing and marine magazine.