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Home > Crew Matters > Yacht Crew Immigration Clearance When Entering Spanish Ports

Yacht Crew Immigration Clearance When Entering Spanish Ports

By Evolution Yacht Agents

Evolution has noticed an increase in the number of queries regarding immigration procedures – crew are becoming more conscious of their legal status whilst in the EU and it is a matter makes most of them shudder! But, as always, when help is needed Evolution is there to assist.

It is mandatory for vessels to declare crew and passenger movements when entering Spanish waters from outside of the EU, however, the authorities also expect to be informed of one’s arrival even if coming from a neighboring EU country. As a result of the implementation of the Schengen Agreement, boats carrying non-EU nationals and also nationals of EU countries which are not signatories of the Schengen Agreement must clear Immigration at the port of entry into Spain.

As yacht agents, Evolution is obliged to declare any change to the crew or passenger list that occurs while the yacht is in Spanish water and therefore they need to receive updated crew and passenger list anytime there are changes.


For non-European crew embarking or disembarking there is a strict procedure for visiting immigration and getting your passports stamped IN or OUT of Europe accordingly – depending on the local immigration office the crew may need to physically be present and even have fingerprints taken. In certain ports, especially commercial ports, all embarkations/ disembarkations must be relayed to the immigration officials no matter what the nationality of the crew member is.

Please note that not all Spanish mainland ports, Cádiz for example, abide strictly by the Schengen rules, and may decline to stamp documents of entry. In such a case it would be left up to the captain to clear into the EU at the next port of call.

A further requirement by Palma de Mallorca authorities is Seaman’s Discharge Books show service dates with embarkations/disembarkations. It is a fineable offence if the seafarer’s book has not been updated to record the entry of their joining the vessel in question. 

As interpretations of EU regulations vary within national and especially regional boundaries, let alone between different countries, the only safe course of action is to obtain the latest updates and guidance from your local agent, well in advance of arrival at any given port.



Evolution Yacht Agents – One step ahead in yacht services

Evolution Yacht Agents is a registered yacht agent offering a comprehensive and bespoke service to superyachts in all major Spanish ports. They provide an in-depth knowledge of the local superyacht market as well as the Spanish navigational and customs regulations.

The Evolution team offers you the optimum experience in the fields of Concierge, Provisioning, Customs, Deck & Engineering, Spares, Interior, Logistics and Fuel.

Their extensive network of contacts, great expertise and wide range in-house resources make them the number one yacht agent to choose when entering Spanish waters.

Navigate Spain with Evolution – info@evolutionagents.com

Tel. +34 971 400 200

Tel. (24h) + 34 650 220 099