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CBP Reminds Boaters Arriving to the U.S. in Pennsylvania, New Jersey or Delaware of Federal Reporting Requirements

Release Date: 
May 14, 2018

PHILADELPHIA – With the quickly approaching Memorial Day weekend kicking off the unofficial start to another busy summer boating season, U.S. Customs and Border Protection is reminding pleasure boat operators of federal reporting requirements.

“It has been a long winter, and Customs and Border Protection wants to remind vessel operators, especially those arriving from Canada or returning to our area after wintering over in the Caribbean, how and where to report their U.S. arrivals,” said Joseph Martella, CBP’s Area Port Director for the Area Port of Philadelphia.  “CBP will continue our marina visits throughout the boating season to remind vessel operators and verify compliance with the federal reporting requirement.”

CBP’s Area Port of Philadelphia, to include the Port of Wilmington, is contacting local Harbor Masters and has posted updated pleasure boat reporting directions on CBP’s website.

Pleasure boat operators arriving within the jurisdictions covered by the Area Port of Philadelphia should report their arrival to (215) 596-1975 during routine business hours, Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., or call (800) 973-2867 after hours.

Pleasure boat operators arriving within the jurisdictions covered by the Port of Wilmington should report their arrival to (302) 326-0600 ext. 119 during routine business hours, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., or call (800) 973-2867 after hours.  This applies to Delaware City Marina, Lewes Public Dock, and Summit North Marina.

A CBP officer will advise where the master and boat's passengers should present themselves for CBP inspection.

Boat operators may also report their arrival in person at CBP’s office located at 8506 Essington Avenue, Building C2, 2nd Floor, Essington, PA 19153 between 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Information you need for reporting include:

  • Name, date of birth, citizenship, passport number and country of all persons on board
  • Name of vessel and boat registration number
  • CBP User Fee decal (for vessels 30 feet or longer)
  • Previous foreign location and current U.S. location, and
  • Contact number

Federal law requires the master or person in charge of a vessel, such as a pleasure boat or yacht, regardless of size, to report their U.S. arrival immediately to the nearest CBP facility.  This requirement applies to all boats regardless of country of registration.

Failure to report international arrivals may result in civil penalties to include a $5,000 penalty for a first violation and $10,000 for each subsequent violation with the conveyance subject to seizure and forfeiture.

“The United States is a welcoming nation, and Customs and Border Protection is the nation’s border security agency charged with managing and securing our borders,” said Casey Owen Durst, CBP’s Field Operations Director in Baltimore, the agency’s operational commander in the mid-Atlantic region.  “It is vital, for the safety and security of our nation, of our citizens and of our economy that CBP knows precisely who and what is entering the U.S. at all times.”

CBP officers will soon launch regular pier patrols to marinas in Southeastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware to deliver new signs and flyers, and conduct compliance examinations of foreign-flagged vessels that officers observe at those marinas.  CBP officers will continue these outreach and enforcement operations throughout the boating season.

For more information, please visit CBP’s Pleasure Boats and Private Flyers reporting webpage.

CBP’s Office of Field Operations

Almost a million times each day, CBP officers welcome international travelers into the U.S.  In screening both foreign visitors and returning U.S. citizens, CBP uses a variety of techniques to intercept narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products, and to assure that global tourism remains safe and strong.  For international travel tips, please visit CBP’s Travel webpage.

CBP's border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations, who enforce all applicable U.S. laws, including against illegal immigration, narcotics smuggling and illegal importation, and by CBP agriculture specialists, who protect U.S. agriculture from the introduction of pests or disease from overseas sources. 

Please visit CBP Ports of Entry to learn more about how CBP’s Office of Field Operations secures our nation’s borders.

Learn more about "A Typical Day" for CBP in 2017, or by visiting www.CBP.gov.

Last published: 
May 15, 2018