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Transatlantic Passport stamp question


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I hope someone can help with this.

 

DW and I are UK citizens, but spend our allowed 90 days in Spain twice a year.

 

We are planning on a transatlantic out of Barcelona to Florida later this year. What I need to know is will Spanish immigration stamp our passport, or will it count that we are in Europe even after we leave Schengen waters, until our passports are stamped in the US?

 

Thanks

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7 hours ago, compman9 said:

I hope someone can help with this.

 

DW and I are UK citizens, but spend our allowed 90 days in Spain twice a year.

 

We are planning on a transatlantic out of Barcelona to Florida later this year. What I need to know is will Spanish immigration stamp our passport, or will it count that we are in Europe even after we leave Schengen waters, until our passports are stamped in the US?

 

Thanks

 

Are you visiting any other Schengen Zone ports on the itinerary. If you depart Barcelona and do not visit another Schengen Zone port, you should only need to allow for the 1-day in Barcelona.

 

However, if you stop in additional Spanish ports or Madeira, then you need to count all days from arrival Barcelona to final departure from the Schengen Zone. Even partially crossing the Atlantic to Madeira, if you departed a Schengen Zone port enroute to Madeira, you are still considered in the Schengen Zone.

 

Stamping, or not stamping the passport does not impact the number of days.

 

If you need further assistance, can you please post the itinerary.

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Thanks for the reply, Heidi.

This is very interesting. I have asked lots of people, and no one seems to know the answer. I know I am considered within the EU while visiting Schengen countries (the last is five days in), what I don't know is how immigration control, with their moody looking army type guys sitting in their little booth at Alicante airport (on my return), will know 24 hours after I left Lanzarote without an EU passport stamp, I did not leave the EU without a stamp and arrive in the US some 104 days after I arrived in Spain (without ever knowing I was on a cruise, because no stamps were provided until I got to the US)

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20 hours ago, compman9 said:

Thanks for the reply, Heidi.

This is very interesting. I have asked lots of people, and no one seems to know the answer. I know I am considered within the EU while visiting Schengen countries (the last is five days in), what I don't know is how immigration control, with their moody looking army type guys sitting in their little booth at Alicante airport (on my return), will know 24 hours after I left Lanzarote without an EU passport stamp, I did not leave the EU without a stamp and arrive in the US some 104 days after I arrived in Spain (without ever knowing I was on a cruise, because no stamps were provided until I got to the US)

 

I find that I am increasingly not getting stamps in my passports, which makes it tougher to track days.

 

May I suggest using a spreadsheet, similar to what I do for managing our days in the USA. I track every visit to the US, notating date/time and border station for entry and departure. I then calculate the number of days and create a running total.

 

If I still lived in UK and made frequent trips to Europe, this is how I would manage my Schengen Zone days.

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On 2/27/2023 at 6:14 AM, Heidi13 said:

 

I find that I am increasingly not getting stamps in my passports, which makes it tougher to track days.

 

May I suggest using a spreadsheet, similar to what I do for managing our days in the USA. I track every visit to the US, notating date/time and border station for entry and departure. I then calculate the number of days and create a running total.

 

If I still lived in UK and made frequent trips to Europe, this is how I would manage my Schengen Zone days.

 

Thank you, but I am perfectly capable of tracking my Schengen days

 

Are you able to answer my question:

Do the days at sea when we leave Schengen before we get to the US count as Schengen days, given there will be no exit stamp until we arrive in the US?

 

 

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1 hour ago, compman9 said:

 

Thank you, but I am perfectly capable of tracking my Schengen days

 

Are you able to answer my question:

Do the days at sea when we leave Schengen before we get to the US count as Schengen days, given there will be no exit stamp until we arrive in the US?

 

 

 

Once you depart the final Schengen Zone port, you should not have to count any further days. That is the system I use to count my days.

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5 hours ago, Heidi13 said:

 

Once you depart the final Schengen Zone port, you should not have to count any further days. That is the system I use to count my days.

 

Even though there's no stamp to prove it?

 

My concern is when I return to Alicante airport and the immigration official sees an entry stamp to Schengen, but not a departure stamp (and the next stamp by date, the US, some 100 days later), I would have to explain in pidgin Spanish that I went on a cruise to leave Schengen !!!

 

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9 hours ago, compman9 said:

 

Even though there's no stamp to prove it?

 

My concern is when I return to Alicante airport and the immigration official sees an entry stamp to Schengen, but not a departure stamp (and the next stamp by date, the US, some 100 days later), I would have to explain in pidgin Spanish that I went on a cruise to leave Schengen !!!

 

 

I am finding significantly less countries are now stamping my passports. On final departure from the Schengen Zone, I expect the passports of non-EU/Schengen will be scanned. When we did a Baltic cruise in 2017, when UK was still in the EU, the ship kept DW's Canadian passport, but did not require my UK passport. I suspect her passport was scanned upon entry and again on departure. She didn't get any stamps.

 

Entering the US, you may not get an arrival stamp. I haven't used my UK passport to enter the US for many years, but with my Canadian passport, it is never stamped. Even driving, at the booth, they run the passport through their scanner and it provides them information on previous visits.

 

Passport stamps haven't been useful for tracking days for many years, hence the reason I have a detailed spreadsheet for days in the US.

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  • 1 year later...

Hello! On the off chance that you see this @compman9 We are in EXACTLY the same position for a repositioning cruise. Our Schengen time runs out when we are on sea days from the last port to the USA. 

 

Did you run into any issues? What was your experience?

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On 5/11/2024 at 1:30 AM, FoleyExploring said:

Hello! On the off chance that you see this @compman9 We are in EXACTLY the same position for a repositioning cruise. Our Schengen time runs out when we are on sea days from the last port to the USA. 

 

Did you run into any issues? What was your experience?

 

Hi

We got off at Cartegena and visited with the border police, then the border officials. Eventually their boss came out and explained it is all done on an electronic manifest.

The day you leave or enter Europe, whether passports are stamped does not matter, is the day it stops/starts recording your Schengen days.

 

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The OP raises a great question, for which we do not have the answer...but we do have our related issue.  In the past two years we have taken two TA cruises from the USA to Europe.  These were longer voyages (over a month long) after which we stayed in Europe (primarily Schengen countries) for a few weeks.  Both our voyages had their initial entry to the EU (and Schengen countries) at Portugese ports (Funchal (last year) and Madeira (last month).  In both cases, our US Passports were not stamped with any kind of Schengen entry stamp.  In fact, our Pursers Office told me that the Portuguese authorities refuse to stamp Passports on transatlantic voyages.  On those two voyages (Seabourn and Oceania) the cruise lines did not even ask to hold anyone's passport.

 

Last year this caused us some real hassles when we eventually flew home out of Munich.  The German authorities were very unhappy that we had no entry stamp because that made it impossible for them to know how long we had been in the Schengen zone.  They gave no indication that there was any computer file (which could have been done by the Portuguese) .  The German Immigration folks (at Munich's Airport) demanded that we prove how, and when, we entered the EU (and Schengen zone).  Fortunately, we had all our cruise documents (and subsequent air flight info within the EU) which we presented to the authorities.  They finally relented and let us go (we made our flight) although they refused to stamp our Passports :).  

 

I do think there are issues related to the 90 day Schengen rule and some differing opinions among several of the Schengen countries.  We think the OP does have some reason to be concerned, but also think there is no place to get the answers that will take away the anxiety about this kind of issue.  Obviously, the workings of this relatively recent 90 day rule is still a work in progress.

 

Hank

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