New Law Allows Patriotic American Superyacht Owners to Finally Fly U.S. Flag

Anyone else find it ironic that this was pushed through by a congressman from a landlocked state…


Prbly a super-yacht owner who just wasn’t patriot enough to pay the American taxes and fees.

Let’s start a list of those super yacht types that choose to do this.

“Although there is no apparent economic benefit from registering under the U.S. flag, for some owners, the idea of flying the American flag is more about patriotism than the money.”

Maybe for the one Texan billionaire who they quoted in this story but I’m thinking the majority of people who are in the Superyacht club see the world in dollars and cents. Otherwise they wouldn’t be in the Superyacht club to begin with


Even if you can afford it, flying a US flag on a mega yacht is bound to bring out the worst in people in many parts of the world. I wouldn’t want rocks thrown at my shiny boat.

I thought this might have been a reaction to the stories about Betsy DeVos’s yacht, or yachts, evidently she has more then one.

DEVOS Forget Old Glory — Why Betsy DeVos’s Family Yacht and Others Fly Foreign Flags
Co-published by Newsweek
When the DeVoses’ 164-foot yacht was untied from a Huron, Ohio dock, it was flying a flag of the Cayman Islands.

Will these mega yachts to be registered under US flag be required to be owned by US Citizens, built in US, manned by US mariners and only be allowed to be repaired at US yards?

Is this upgrading of “old and outdated maritime laws” a sign that other changes MAY be in the cards, or is this just another concession to the rich and famous?

Atessa IV was tied up next to my school last month. I stood around the quayside and gawked at a helicopter take off. I think the owners are American, but her dry-docking is done in North Vancouver, and the flag is Cayman Islands. She is strikingly beautiful, even when you’re just standing around looking at the outside with your hands in your pockets.

I guess I’ll have pull my Feadship out of storage so I can fly Old Glory over it.


Take it easy big fella, this has nothing to do with the Jones Act. As you suggest, it’s just an example of the power of the almighty dollar.

Chihuli dome? My stars and little fishes…it’s a different world.

I’ll say. I thought Chihuli was some kind of Mexican condiment.

He’s an artist, works in glass. Judging by some of the results, he has a very strange mind.

oh him. He’s got an installation on Bute St. Downtown. I like it, but I always think about how difficult it would be to dust.

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I think you use an old-timey gasoline blowtorch, just a light pass.

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No not the Jones Act, but doesn’t the same apply to any vessel used in US waters, I believe even small ferries, charter boat and private yachts under 300 GT??
Second question; could a foreign owner register a yacht under US flag under the new law?
Third; If a US flag yacht is used exclusively outside US waters, would the Owner be allowed to hire foreign crew, except Master? (Refr. OSVs working foreign)

c4[quote=“ombugge, post:16, topic:48950”]
No not the Jones Act, but doesn’t the same apply to any vessel used in US waters, I believe even small ferries, charter boat and private yachts under 300 GT??

US built private yachts can be documented with the CG but they are not subject to minimum manning requirements and not issued COIs.
I recall the owners’ insurance companies requiring a licensed master when I ran a few documented private yachts but not the CG. I wasn’t aware of the 300T ceiling but there weren’t so many mega yachts back then.
Still, it never made sense to me that although a captain is collecting a paycheck from a yacht owner who can load the yacht up with a couple of dozen guests, as long as they’re not paying for anything, he doesn’t need a license.

Currently, my understanding is he can hire whoever he wants.

Sounds like the USCG is going to be tasked with writing a whole new code for these mega yachts. Expect it sometime around the Barron Trump administration


The super yacht crowd don’t even consider themselves citizens of any country. They just choose where to live and pay taxes where it suits their bottom line. They are patriotic to themselves only.


So if I understand you right this is likely to apply to yachts >300 GT that is US owned, US built and, if operated in US waters, US crewed.

No formal marine licenses required, except maybe by Underwriters, or maybe by local Maritime Authorities in accordance with IMO STCW, if in foreign waters.

Any such USCG rules to be implemented “sometime around the Barron Trump administration”, meanwhile British MCA approval will be required for US registration.

Makes perfect sense, if you ask me.