US flag Official website of the Department of Homeland Security

CBP Reminds Private Boaters Arriving to the U.S. in PA, Southern NJ or Delaware of Federal Reporting Requirements

Release Date: 
June 10, 2019

Reporting into the United States just got easier with ROAM app

PHILADELPHIA – Temperatures are rising with summer quickly approaching and with that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) anticipates rising numbers of private vessels arriving to Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware from Canada, Bermuda and the Caribbean. CBP reminds vessel masters of federal reporting requirements and introduces a new and easier way to report their arrivals.

CBP officer patch in the foreground and a small vessel in the background.

Federal law (19 CFR 4.2) requires the master or person in charge of a vessel, such as a pleasure boat or yacht, regardless of size or country of registration, to report their U.S. arrival immediately to the nearest CBP facility (see 19 U.S.C. 1433).

“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 Durst, CBP’s Director of Field Operations in Baltimore. “CBP’s enforcement of pleasure boat reporting regulations balances our interests in welcoming vessels arriving from foreign ports with ensuring the safety and security of our nation, our citizens and our economy.”

CBP’s Area Port of Philadelphia, to include the Port of Wilmington, Delaware, 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 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, or call 1-800-973-2867 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 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, or call 1-800-973-2867 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 between 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. at CBP’s office located at 8506 Essington Avenue, Building C2, 2nd Floor, Essington, PA 19153.

No other person, baggage or merchandise may be offloaded from the vessel until permitted by a CBP officer. 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.

“CBP is excited to offer a new and easier option for vessel operators to report their arrivals, and right from their smartphones through CBP’s ROAM app,” Durst said. “The ROAM app is one way in which CBP is leveraging technology to streamline federal reporting requirements.”

Icon for CBP's ROAM app.

CBP launched the Reporting Offsite Arrival – Mobile (ROAM) app, a free app that provides an option for pleasure boaters to satisfy federal reporting requirements by reporting their U.S. entry to CBP on their personal smart device. Download the app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store. In certain locations, the CBP ROAM app can also be accessed on tablets at partner locations.

To use the CBP ROAM app, travelers input their biographic, conveyance, and trip details and submit their trip for CBP officer review. The CBP officer may then initiate a video chat to further interview the travelers. Once the CBP officer reviews the trip, travelers will receive a push notification and an email with their admissibility decision and next steps.

Click here for more information on CBP’s ROAM app. Click here for more information on CBP reporting requirements for port calls in other parts of the country.

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

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 2018, or by visiting www.CBP.gov.

Last modified: 
June 11, 2019