Bimini Sands HomeOwner - Update on Visa's & Extensions

Bimini Sands HomeOwner ... update on my 40 day Visa  posted earlier.  I thought that today was my 40th day in the Bahamas ... turns out I was over ... arrival 12/21 and today is 1/30 ... my bad ... when I count on the calendar it comes out to 40 days by my count, but then, I am not the official doing the paperwork ... even though they were not available to extend it on the weekends. I was told it would be better to do it early ... well, my friends it was not so easy to get my extension.

Originally, when I arrived in the Bahamas I was told to come back to the airport to get my visa extension ... when I went there today to get the extension I was told NO, they do not do extensions at the airport ... I must go to North Bimini ... I went North ... North Bimini immigration at the government dock said no that I needed to go to the Immigration headquarters next to the police station.  OK, so I hoofed it up there, the official that does extensions was at the bank so I was told to come back in a little while ... fortunately the gentleman at the counter asked about my return ticket to the US.  I told him I didn't bring it with me as they had checked this on my arrival, I just brought my passport and my landing card ... well, that wasn't enough, he said ... they needed to verify my return .... GRRRRR ...

SOoooo .. I walked back to the docks ... ferried across to South Bimini .... got in the golf cart and came back to Bimini Sands to retrieve my return ticket ... and then repeated the procedure.

Now,  back at the Immigration HQ I spoke with the official in charge.  He explained that many people think that visiting the Bahamas is an entitlement, but that it is up to the official stamping the passport as to what happens ... rarely will a US citizen get a visa to stay longer than 90 days without getting an additional extension ... even though the Bahamian government page shows that an American can stay  up to 8 months.  He said that most likely the reason I  received 40 days the first time was that my Continental flight was delayed and there was only a customs agent present "after" hours.  Customs actually issued my visa and not immigration ... I don't know ... there were 2 officials there ... maybe they were both customs agents ....  he then pointed out in my passport that customs had stamped the "40 day" visa, not immigration ...

OK, I do understand that I am visiting another country even if I do own property here ... I just want to know what I need to do to get by, as do most visitors.

That's the latest ... and I now have a 60 day extension ... YEAH!!!!!

Hope this helps someone in the future!

Any questions?  Feel free to email me at:

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