It is 8 weeks today since we arrived in Greece to pick up our new boat. We bought it in February and started the proceedings to remove it from the Greek Ships’ Registry and register it in Australia.
We filled in all the forms needed for Australia in March before we left, duly signed by a Justice of the Peace who confirmed we were who we said we were and paid $80 for them to send the Registration by courier when it was done.
We filled in all the forms needed for Greece and paid $80 to send them back via a courier so there was no hold up.
We had an email , when we got to the UK, that another form needed to be filled in for Greece so we went to Swiss Cottage in London to sign them with a Greek Notary Public.
On 10 May we arrived in Greece to find nothing was happening. The agent for the Charter Company who owned Olive said that all the forms had been sent but the two women in the office in Piraeus that did all the ship registries were snowed under due to all the boats coming over from Turkey. She was trying to bribe them, with promises of a box of Quality Street, to do ours but no luck so far.
Over the next 4 weeks we visited the agent’s office on numerous occasions. We tried various strategies learnt on management courses over the years to ‘progress’ our application: Andy did his tough sales management style; I did my touch-feely nursey thing but both to no avail.
On 31 May we were told the Greek de-registration from was ready! But it had to be translated. And the translator was snowed under.
On 5 June the Greek de-registration form was sent to Australia but they refused it as it looked fake. No stamps or headed paper.
On 22 June a new Greek de-registration document was issued with stamps and everything. HOORAY!!
On 23 June it was returned as the name of the sellers on the Bill of Sale was not the same as the name on the De-Registration document. BOO!!
The Sellers then got various pieces of identification proving that they were one and the same and we sent that back on 24 June. The Australian Registry accepted this and, on 26 June, finally posted our Australian Registration, via a express courier. HOORAY!!!
On 29 June the agent informed us that she had found out that she had to apply for the boat to be taken out of the Greek COMMERCIAL Registry and for this had to fill out 12 forms and we had to pay a fee of 1000 euros, 450Eu for the Customs agent, Customs charges and her fee and 550Eu for the revocation (?) fee. She has filled in the forms but we are waiting for them to be returned and did not know how long it would take. BOO!!
On 3 July we still had not received our Australian Registration and e mailed the Ships Registry who e mailed the courier, TNT, for a tracking number. We heard today that they cannot tell us when it will be delivered because……wait for it….. the system has been ‘hit by a cyber attack’. Yes, you read that correctly. HIT BY A ****** CYBER ATTACK!!!!
For those of you who still are, thank you for listening.