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Fiji: Clearing in at Port Denarau - May 2015

By James Ellingford — last modified Sep 27, 2015 08:22 AM
A cruiser's experience when using an agent for clearance on arrival in Fiji.

Published: 2015-05-22 23:00:00
Countries: Fiji

Fiji: Clearing in at Port Denarau - May 2015

James and Claire Ellingford

(This is a report from James Ellingford who is on a circumnavigation on his 62ft motor yacht)

FIJI CUSTOMS.

May 2015

For our arrival into Fiji I decided we would use a clearing agent and I have to say I am glad we did as there is a tremendous amount of paperwork required.  To give you some idea of just how much and, how many copies of each that is required here is the official list:

8 copies of the crew list
2 copy of Customs Advance Arrival forms (C2C)
3 copies of immigration arrival form of the Master/Owner's Statement
2 copies of Notice to Owner or Master of Yachts 
2 copies of Alcohol and Cigarette list 
1 copy of Meat or Vegetable list that's on board
1 copy of Yacht Certificate of Registry
1 copy of Health Form
1 copy of Bio Security Authority
2 copies of Coastal Clearance forms

Fortunately the clearing agent we used, Yacht Partners Fiji (“YPF”), who incidentally have been recently voted the second best clearing agency in the world, were incredibly organised and had me pre complete all forms before I had even departed Australia (other than the vegetable and alcohol forms).

Not that we have a great deal of experience entering foreign ports just yet but I can’t speak highly enough of YPF and in particular, our main contact Josephine Morris (email: jo@yachtpartnersfiji.com) who was superb.

On arrival and within two minutes of shutting down our main engine we had six officials board Pendana and paperwork was passed from one to the other as Jo called the shots and made sure we were cleared as soon as possible.  Twenty minutes later, job done and we were free to set foot on terra firma.

In all honesty, I rarely wax lyrical about terribly much but when a company performs above all expectation then it’s worth doing so. In this case Jo and Yacht Partners Fiji were brilliant.

Contact details for those travelling this way below.

Yacht Partners Fiji
Shop 18, Port Denarau Marina, Nadi
M: +679 9927 986 F: +679 6751 135 
www.yachtpartnersfiji.com

For clearing in we used the sufferance port of Port Denarau rather than heading to Lautoka which I understand is rather industrial.  There is a charge to relocate the customs folks to Port Denarau and a number of other charges to clear in.  Here is the list of charges we encountered on our arrival including the cost for clearing in a sufferance port:-

1/ Customs application fees to clear in Denarau - $12.30

2/ Customs clearance fees - $191.30

3/ Bio security -$193.20

4/ Health charges for clearance in sufferance port - $1,305

5/ Transport (taxi) - officials Lautoka / Denarau return ‎- $160.

The approach to Port Denarau is incredibly well marked but it does have to be said that it is narrow.

Pendana entering her berth.

Pendana through Navula Passage: Lead lights were not working when we arrived.

Low tide the channels in Marina become rather narrow.

Departure from Fiji also couldn’t have been easier.  We left the Marina on Wednesday and decided to head to Musket Cove, which is a must visit for anyone who comes to Fiji.

James Ellingford
MV Pendana
www.pendanablog.com

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Chris
Chris says:
Sep 27, 2015 06:34 AM

I would hate for anyone to get put off going to Fiji by this. Clearing in charges are F$263 and you would also pay one of the approved marinas if doing it through them a nominal charge. The marinas arrange for the officials to come to the quarantine berth. It is really very simple and quick. I cleared in at Copra Shed in Early September 2015 and the officials here walk to the marina.

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