Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Good News for American Cruisers in Palau!

On March 23, 2009, Koror State Government amended their Rock Islands Management and Conservation Act to clarify definitions of Tourist, Citizen and Non-Citizen, with respect to Koror State tourist permit requirements. For American citizens visiting or cruising Palau for extended periods this change is a welcome clarification that clearly states the rules with respect to residency and notes the process required to secure a Koror State Resident Identification Card. That’s good news for American cruisers!

Palau enjoys a very special relationship with the United States under an agreement known as the Compact of Free Association and in return American citizens are entitled to a one-year Tourist Visa at no charge. As a result, many American cruisers opt to remain and cruise in Palau for an extended period however, unless they are considered residents, they remain subject to the Tourist Permit requirements of Koror State Government, which can be burdensome in the case of extended stays.

Presently, all visitors to Palau’s Rock Islands, which are located in Koror State, are required to purchase a permit. Funds raised from permits are used to maintain a system of mooring buoys at dive sites, maintain shelters, barbeques and bathrooms at popular beaches, maintain docks and trail facilities at Jellyfish Lake, provide marine safety and law enforcement patrols including monitoring conservation areas. There are two types of Koror State permits as follows:

Rock Island Permit $25 – Valid 10 Days: Permits holder to visit the rock islands, snorkel, dive, kayak, sail, and use designated beaches throughout the rock islands.
The permit does NOT permit access to Jellyfish Lake.

Jellyfish Lake Permit $35 – Valid 10 Days: Permits holder to visit Jellyfish Lake and the rock islands, snorkel, dive, kayak, sail, and use designated beaches throughout the rock islands.

For cruisers who wish to venture beyond Malakal Harbor (official Port of Entry) to spend time in the Rock Islands an additional “30 Day Cruising Permit” is required for their vessel at an approximate cost of $10 per foot, to a maximum of $80.

For American cruisers who are automatically permitted to stay for up to a year, the Koror State permit process and costs can be both administratively and financially burdensome. The clarifications under the new law however, make it easy to understand and simple to comply with the residency requirement and should encourage U.S. cruisers to spend more time (and more moeny) in Palau. That's a win win for all!

With proof of legal entitlement to remain in the country for more than 90 days and the intention to do so (as evidenced by a Vessel Entry Permit valid for one year and a Tourist Visa valid for one year) American cruisers can register their vessels in Koror State for a nominal fee and purchase a “Resident Identification Card” from Koror State Finance Office for $5.00

RBYC thinks that's great news!

E-mail: rbycpalau@gmail.com for a complete text of the new law.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Welcome to RBYC's new Blog!

Greetings from RBYC in Koror, Palau, Micronesia and welcome to our new Blog! This is just a first post to check some settings. The blog will be updated shortly and fully activated. Check back in a few days.
Port Captain

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Farewell Colin! Cinco de Mayo, 2007

Visiting cruisers celebrating Cinco de Mayo, 2007, at the Royal Belau Yacht Club, Koror, Palau. The club hosts a great party every Cinco de Mayo, with a Mexican Food Competition, John Mc Cready's Magical Margarita's, and lots of locally brewed RED ROOSTER BEER!
We are saddened to learn that Colin (blue shirt) died recently in an accident on board his boat "Deja Vu". We really enjoyed Colin's company during his visit to Palau and will miss him. Farewell Colin!

Saturday, January 31, 2009


The 173 foot motor yacht SURI, pictured lying off Malakal Harbor, Koror, Palau in Jan 2009. SURI and her fun crew spent a few months in Palau and quickly became part of the local community. Skipper Neil Anderson and his fun-loving Fijian crew were always on hand for adventure, fun and games. SURI is the penultimate gentlemans "Toy Box" with a list of on-board gadgets that includes a helicopter, hovercraft, landing craft, dune buggy, 45 foot
"Intrepid" launch, Hobie cats, Lasers, kayaks, row boats, Waverunners, jet skis......just to mention a few. SURI is the tender to the 150 foot superyacht JeMaSa, and is a superyacht herself in her own right.

A former Bering Sea fishing boat, SURI underwent a major conversion in Washington State, USA, supervised by Neil Anderson and his crew. Sam's Tours served as local agent for SURI while RBYC served as her home port and primary "wateringhole" for the ships crew.