If you’re planning to charter a yacht in France, you’ll need to be aware of the 70% rule. This rule is a legal requirement that applies to yachts cruising in French waters, and it mandates that at least 70% of the time spent on board must be outside of French territorial waters.
The 70% rule in yachting was introduced by the French government to help prevent the fraudulent use of commercial yachts as private vessels. By requiring yachts to spend the majority of their time outside of French waters, the government is able to ensure that commercial yachts are being used for their intended purpose – to provide a service to paying clients – rather than being used as private vessels by their owners.
The rule applies to all yachts over 15 meters in length that are commercially registered and operating in French waters. It’s worth noting that the 70% requirement is based on the total time spent on board, including time spent at anchor or docked in French ports. This means that if you’re planning to spend a week cruising along the French Riviera, you’ll need to spend at least three days outside of French waters to comply with the rule.
Operators of commercial yachts in France must keep a logbook that records the yacht’s movements, including the time spent in French waters and the time spent outside of French waters. This logbook must be made available for inspection by French authorities upon request, and failure to comply with the 70% rule can result in fines and other penalties.
It’s also important to note that the 70% rule only applies to commercial yachts. Private yachts are not subject to the same restrictions, although they may still need to comply with other regulations, such as customs and immigration requirements.
If you’re planning to charter a yacht in France, it’s important to work with a reputable operator who is knowledgeable about French regulations and can help you navigate the 70% rule and other requirements. By working with a trusted operator and complying with French regulations, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable yacht charter experience in one of the world’s most beautiful cruising destinations.