Guatemala - Formalities
On arrival yachts are normally visited by Customs, Immigration, Police, Health and Port Captain.
Procedure on Departure: A zarpe (clearance) must be obtained from Immigration and the Port Captain must sign it. Passports must also have exit stamps from Immigration.
Guatemala entry fees for boaters and one year boat extensions increased April 1, 2011. The new entry fee is due to a tax increase levied by SAT, the Guatemalan customs and taxing authority. See Fees below for further details.
Last updated December 2013.
Prior visas are not required by nationals of the European Union, Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Belize, Canada, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Honduras, Israel, Japan, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland, USA and Uruguay.
A tourist visa card must be purchased on entry. This new CA-4 visa applies to the following countries:- Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua. The length of stay (normally 90 days) applies to the whole group and only one extension will usually be granted. To remain in the region longer, a visit to a country outside the CA-4 area must be made and a new visa will be issued on re-entry.
There is a daily fine for overstaying one's permitted time.
Passports should always be carried especially if travelling inland.
Last updated November 2013.
A yacht will be normally granted a 90 day stay, after which a 9 month extension can be obtained if the boat is berthed at one the the 8 approved marinas. After the first year it may be possible to obtain another 12 month extension.
Extensions MUST be applied for at least one month before the current permit (90 day or previous extension) expires. Once the previous permit expires the only option is to import the vessel (at 30% of the boat's value). Customs will not issue an extension if you apply for it too close to the time of expiration.
SAT (Guatemalan Customs) in Livingston can advise on the best way to apply for extensions.
Note that SAT do a lot of control on the Pacific side of the country as there are many sport fishing boats there that never pay the taxes, so they enforce the law to the letter. Be sure your boat papers are in proper order, in particular if entering the country at Puerto Quetzal, Puerto Barrios and Santa Tomas.
Firearms must be declared. Firearms will be held by police or the port captain during the stay in port. A receipt will be issued.
Note: Guatemalan Customs regulations often change without notice.
Last updated November 2013.
Amoebic dysentery is endemic.
Malaria prophylaxis is necessary.
Dengue fever occurs throughout the year.
Cruising yachts will be issued on arrival with a special permit consisting of a sticker that must be displayed prominently on the boat. The sticker will be attached by the customs officer in the first port of entry.
The new fees shown below (introduced April 2011) apply only to Monday-Friday check ins and check outs. On Saturdays and Sundays, a Q100 overtime fee will be applied.
As of April 9, 2011, US$1.00 = Q 7.66.
The new fees are as follows:
Q 500.00 Customs
Q 225.00 Immigration
Q 175.00 Port Captain
Q 100.00 Doctor
Q 1,000.00 total
Q 160.00 Inmigration 2 persons
Q 25.00 Customs
Q 165.00 Port Captain
Q 550.00 total
Extensions for boat navigational permits have increased Q300 from Q1500 a year to Q1800 a year.
Last updated December 2011.
Animals must be declared and should have up-to-date health certificates. They are not allowed to land.