Customs and Immigration

Participants in the 2016 Newport Bermuda Race can make their lives and those of Bermuda Department of Border Control officials easier by reading and following the following customs and immigration instructions:

Before Departing Newport – Pre-clear into Bermuda

Bermuda Department of Border Control officers will be posted at Race Headquarters in Newport to provide pre-clearance services.  Pre-clearing will help avoid long waits to clear in at RBYC and put you closer to that first post-race Dark ’n Stormy. The Border Control officers will process and return all forms, which are then expected to be collected by captains and turned in to Border Control for the crew at RBYC check-in upon arrival in Bermuda.


Customs Hours

Tue June 14

0830-1630 (Bermuda Customs only)

Wed June 15

0830-1630 (Bermuda and U.S. Customs)

Thur June 16

1000-2000 (Bermuda Customs; U.S. Customs until Noon)

Captains and Crew:  

Each individual crew member must apply in person with:

  • Passport in hand (and return flight confirmation if applicable – see below)
    • All US, Canadian, UK and Western Europe passports must be machine readable and all passports must be valid for at least 45 days after the traveler’s expected date of departure from Bermuda.
    • Married persons travelling using their married name but whose identification is in their birth name must also present their marriage certificate or a certified copy thereof.
    • Landed immigrants in the USA or Canada must also present their landed Immigration Status card (the “green card” in the US).
    • All travelers who require a multi re-entry visa (MRV) for the US, UK or Canada must also present this visa as well, and that visa must be valid for at least 45 days after the traveler’s expected date of departure from Bermuda. 
  • Completed Immigration Passenger Form (Form available in Newport)
  • Completed Customs Traveller Declaration Form (Form available in Newport;  single form may be presented for immediate family members sharing a common household).  


Each must also provide everything required of crew (above) and also:

  • Bermuda Customs Clearance (Form available in Newport)
  • Additional Crew and Passenger List – Private Yachts   (Form available in Newport)

Additional Documents you will need:

Racing crew returning by air:  If you’re racing to Bermuda but flying home, you’ll need to present your return ticket, boarding pass or airline confirmation to Bermuda Department of Border Control during your in-person pre-clearance interview at Harbour Court or, if not pre-cleared, at your in-person interview at RBYC.

Return crew arriving by air:  In order to clear Border Control at Bermuda’s airport, you’ll need a letter from your captain confirming you’re a part of the boat’s return trip crew and an anticipated departure date.  You’ll also need your passport and completed Bermuda Immigration Passenger and Customs Traveller Declaration forms (they are supplied by your airline, in flight).

Racing crew returning on a different boat:  In these circumstances you’ll also need a letter from your return boat captain confirming you’re a part of the boat’s return trip crew and an anticipated departure date.



Upon Arrival in Bermuda

Captains are reminded to:

  • Fly Quarantine Flag
  • Proceed immediately to Royal Bermuda Yacht Club (or RHADC, if that is where your yacht is to be berthed). Do not go to the Yacht Reporting Center in St. George) to clear in.  
  • Even if your yacht was pre-cleared in Newport, captains must visit H.M. Customs Officers stationed in the RBYC Trophy Lounge.  They will be on there from Monday, June 20 through Sunday June 26th.  
    • If you will be berthed at RHADC, Captains should contact the RHADC Duty Desk for transport to RBYC for Customs Clearance. Once yachts have been cleared at the RBYC, the RBYC Duty Desk will arrange transport back to RHADC.
  • After clearing in, the quarantine flag may be lowered, except that if any crew member has a contagious disease, the quarantine flag must remain hoisted and all crew members must remain aboard until a Medical Officer clears the yacht.

Items to bring to RBYC for check in:

Customs and Immigration:

  • Bermuda Customs Clearance-vessel, one double sided form per boat (completed in triplicate)
  • Declaration of Health (one double-sided form per boat)
  • Customs Traveller Declaration form for captain and all crew (White w/ blue lettering)
  • Immigration Passenger Form for captain and all crew (Pink) – page 2 stamped by Immigration
  • A valid airline ticket for all crew flying out of Bermuda or evidence that such a ticket is waiting at Bermuda
    E-tickets are acceptable BUT documentary proof of ticket MUST be shown, i.e. printout showing Locator ID and confirmation of flight itinerary
  • Any crewmembers who did not pre-clear in Newport must accompany their captain to RBYC with passport and completed Immigration Passenger Form and Customs Traveller Declaration in hand.

Other race-related documents:

  • Certificate of Compliance (must be handed in within 18 hours of finishing the Race)
  • Tourism Survey
  • Onboard Training Certificate signed by all participating crew.
  • Transponder

Clearance from Bermuda before sailing home:

Captains must clear out with the Bermuda officials at RBYC if departing before June 27th. If departing on or after June 27th, captains must clear out with Bermuda officials at the Yacht Reporting Center in St. Georges.

All captains must present their

  • Bermuda Customs Clearance
  • Additional Crew and Passenger List – Private Yachts
  • Immigration Passenger Form and Passport for crew joining in Bermuda for the return trip

Fly In, Sail Out

Visitors entering Bermuda are normally expected to have a return ticket. However, those who wish to fly into Bermuda and depart by yacht should follow this procedure. The Captain of the yacht should give a letter to each crewmember who will be arriving in Bermuda by air on one-way ticket and leaving on the vessel. The letter should include the full name, date of birth, address and nationality of the crewmember, as well as the name of the vessel he or she will be joining. The Landing Permit fee of $23 must be paid on arrival to an Immigration Officer in either U.S. or Bermuda dollars. Cheques should be made payable to the Accountant General.


H.M. Customs will require confirmation of accommodations if crew are arriving early or staying beyond the departure of the yacht.