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News & Events for Chesapeake Bay

New cash declaration rules for Bahamas entry and exit

Date Posted: 2015-08-13
Source: The Government of the Bahamas

Bahamas-Flag.jpgMost cruisers load up on a fair amount of cash before heading across the Gulf Stream to the Bahamas. Many out island merchants and fishermen do not take credit cards – even the entry fees usually need to be paid in cash – and ATMs are often not convenient, not functioning, or out of money. When you can use your credit card (or ATM card), you'll often be hit with a sizable transaction fee. 

The Bahamas Parliament has enacted the Travellers Currency Declaration Act of 2014 which requires travelers to declare upon entry or exit if in possession of $10,000 or more in any currency. A "Travellers Currency Declaration Form" will need to be filled out and presented. Penalties for non-compliance can include forfeiture of the cash, plus up to a $2,000 fine on top of that.

The act is not yet in force but will most likely be by the end of the year – look for updates.

The act’s purpose is to combat money laundering, tax evasion, and for the Bahamas to comply with the USA’s Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) treaty.

Note: Both Bahamian dollars and U.S. dollars are accepted everywhere in the Bahamas and are equal in value (until you bring the Bahamas dollars back home and try to exchange them).

  • Comment submitted by Ken - Thu, Aug 27th

    The Bahamas is run by a gang of thieves. Who beat down there own people and line their pockets with foreigners cash at every opportunity. Beware especially the Lawyers . With that said there are a few who survive amongst the rabble. Good luck finding them though.

  • Comment submitted by Luke - Mon, Nov 30th

    This is primarily a USA Government enforced issue. The US Government beats down foreign governments into complying with the US cash laws. Look at US Customs and IRS rules, they are identical ($10,000.00 bringing in or going out of the US).

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