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eSea Clear

The Caribbean Pre-Arrival Notification System  –  Finding clearing in and out a drag? For whatever vessel or reason we all know customs is necessary but it is a procedure that all parties concerned would like to see smoother, time efficient and in essence, easy!

Bringing us into the modern day is eSea Clear. Now if you don’t use a computer and are at sea this isn’t for you but you may want to consider bringing yourself up to speed before you start having any more criticism about customs procedures.

eSea Clear is the Caribbean pre- arrival notification system that provides vessel operators the ability to submit electronic notifications of arrival to participating custom offices in the British Virgin Islands. Registered users can access the system to enter and maintain information about their vessel or vessels, crew and passengers. Prior to arrival in the BVI the vessel operator uploads the accurate information for the voyage and submits a new one on disembarkation.


The benefits are no manual form filling ensuring a smoother process as it is all done on-line. Its relatively easy as the master of the vessel simply turns up to confirm the details and then signs a print-out confirming the details are correct and now in place. These details stay the same once leaving the area and the next destination can be notified of the vessel and crews upcoming arrival. All information is stored on customs database and serves all parties involved to have a clear manifest of the travel arrangements.

The initiative has been in place since 1997 and had been implemented since 2000. Currently, eSea Clear is in its pilot stage and the BVI and St. Lucia are the only two countries utilizing this pre-arrival notification system. So far unsurprisingly customs are receiving positive feedback from its users.

And the BVI customs hopes that with the implementation of eSea Clear, all boaters (locals and visitors) will be encouraged to utilize this system for expeditious and efficient clearances. YG

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