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Sometimes, U.S. waters are just a little too small. Many boaters want to enjoy the sights and experiences of a foreign port of call.

Wherever you go, you want your boat insurance coverage to follow you. However, insuring your boat for international waters is sometimes a tricky bargain.

What are International Waters and Foreign Waters?

Generally, boaters operate in three types of water jurisdictions:

Domestic waters: Those under the law, administration and jurisdiction of the United States. When using domestic waters, boaters usually follow federal maritime law and state regulations. Some usage restrictions may apply to the time, place and manner of use. Certain bodies of water may be entirely off-limits.

Foreign waters: Waters under the control and jurisdiction of foreign countries. To operate in foreign waters, American boaters may have to get permission from that country’s maritime authority. Boaters may have to carry certain permits, visas or other operating qualifications.

International waters: No country has jurisdiction over these waters. Though no country has claim over international waters, a variety of international agreements govern boating in these areas. Maritime law is sometimes confusing. Generally, however, boaters have to adhere to the laws of the countries whose flags they fly.

As you venture into different maritime jurisdictions, your insurance risks often change. Therefore, boaters should have the proper insurance to operate in different jurisdictions.

Boat Insurance in International and Foreign Water

Many boaters assume that their insurance policies will always cover them. However, this is often wistful thinking. Boat insurance policies often only cover their owners as long as they operate in U.S. waters.

But, what about those boaters who want to operate in foreign or international waters? They need insurance protection, too. The risks of boating in foreign surroundings even enhances the need for accurate coverage.

  • Certain boat insurance policies may cover certain excursions into Canadian waters. However, policies may limit this coverage to a certain distance that you can travel.
  • To adequately insure your boat in international and foreign waters, you often need to add secondary international coverage or a rider to your existing policy.
  • When you plan to operate in foreign waters, ensure you have the proper documentation and permission to operate in the jurisdiction of another country. Doing so will help you legally enter foreign waters.

With the correct care, you can adequately insure your boat for international use. Work with your boat insurance agent to determine the right policy for you.

Call Casey Insurance Group at (888) 537-1412 to get an instant, free boat insurance quote. We’ve got you covered.

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