Yachts affected by VAT issues post-Brexit

Amongst the many doubts and uncertainties still circulaing following the UK’s withdrawal from the EU, there is much confusion surrounding the issue of the VAT status on yachts at the end of the transition period.

In order to provide answers and clarifications on VAT and customs issues post-Brexit, the International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA), European Boating Industry (EBI), European Boating Association (EBA), British Marine (BM) and the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) decided to publish a guide on the matter for yachting companies and users.

In this guide, which has been approved and validated by the European Commission, there are key scenarios that affect boats (detailed below) on the application of VAT in different situations. These important clarifications are the result of an initiative led by the EBI together with the European Commission.

VAT issues scenario post-Brexit


Impact on VAT Paid Status (VPS)

Scenario 1

  • GB owned/registered pleasure craft
  • In free circulation (VPS) within EU28 pre-TPE (and has supporting documentary evidence)
  • Within EU27 as at TPE

✓   EU VAT Paid Status

The boat retained EU VPS status.

Scenario 2

  • GB owned/registered pleasure craft
  • In free circulation (VPS) in EU28 pre-TPE (and has documentary evidence)
  • Within an EU27 as at TPE
  • Boat leaves EU27 (for GB or elsewhere) and then returns to the EU27

✓   RGR & EU VAT Paid Status

Boat is eligible to RGR on return to the EU27 and will have EU VPS, provided that all the conditions established in Article 203 UCC are fulfilled and, for VAT, that the boat is imported by the same person who exported it.

Scenario 3

  • EU27 owned/registered pleasure craft
  • EU28 VPS pre-TPE (and has documentary evidence)
  • In EU27 as at TPE
  • VAT paid on original new purchase in GB a number of years ago
  • Subsequent ownership and location within the EU27

✓   EU VAT Paid Status

The boat keeps its Union status and it is therefore in free circulation with EU VPS.

Scenario 4

  • GB owned/registered pleasure craft
  • Business owned
  • EU VPS before TPE
  • In EU27 as at TPE
  • Kept and used within the EU27
  • Long-term lease to individual for private use
  • GB VAT accounted for on annual lease charge

✓   EU VAT Paid Status

According to the information provided, the boat has Union status and keeps it unless the boat is taken outside the customs territory of the Union.

Scenario 5

  • GB owned/registered pleasure craft
  • Owner is ordinarily resident in GB
  • Using boat within EU27 on TA
  • Owner has an EU27 holiday property where they keep the boat moored (in their name)

✓   Temporary admission

A person is established in the customs territory of the Union if he/she fulfils the conditions established in Article 5(31) UCC. If the person is not established in the customs territory of the Union, then he/she can declare the boat for temporary admission if it has non-Union customs status.

Scenario 6

  • GB or EU27 owned/pleasure craft
  • In free circulation within EU28 pre-TPE (and has documentary evidence)
  • No evidence of having been in the EU27 previously; or
  • Ownership has changed since it was last in the EU27
  • In GB as at TPE

EU VAT Paid Status Lost

Article 203 UCC requires evidence of a previous export to the UK. The Commission guidance indicates that, in the absence of an export declaration, evidence of the previous movement of the boat to the UK is required. If the boat has never been in EU27 it is impossible to provide evidence of movement to the UK.

Scenario 7

  • EU27 owned/pleasure craft
  • In free circulation with EU28 pre-TPE (and has documentary evidence)
  • Had previously been evidenced as being within the EU27 within the last three years
  • In GB as at TPE
  • Same owner who brought it out of EU27, returned to the EU27 within three years of departure

Documentation required

Article 203 UCC requires evidence of a previous export to the UK. The Commission guidance indicates that, in the absence of an export declaration, evidence of the previous movement of the boat to the UK is required. If the boat has never been in EU27 it is impossible to provide evidence of movement to the UK.

Scenario 8

  • GB owned/pleasure craft
  • In free circulation with EU28 pre-TPE (and has documentary evidence)
  • Had previously been evidenced as being within the EU27 within the last three years
  • In GB as at TPE
  • Same owner who brought it out of EU27, returned to the EU27 within three years of departure

Documentation required

It is for the Member State to decide whether the conditions for RGR is possible (Article 203 UCC) are met. Article 203 UCC requires evidence of a previous export to the UK. The Commission guidance indicates that, in the absence of an export declaration, evidence of the previous movement of the boat to the UK is required. Member State authorities must therefore assess whether that satisfactory evidence can be provided in this scenario.

With reference to the Scenarios 7 and 8 Evolution will keep you updated on the different requirements and procedures as a proof of export demanded by every member state within the EU27.

The following acronyms are used:

TPE = The time at which the transition period ended – 31 December 2020, 23:00 UTC
VPS = VAT Paid Status: i.e. in free circulation
EU28 = EU before TPE, i.e. including UK
EU27 = EU after TPE, i.e. excluding UK
GB = England / Scotland / Wales excluding Northern Ireland
TA = Temporary Admission
RGR = Returned Goods Relief
UCC = Union Customs Code

*All information believed correct at time of publishing of the above article – 9th April 2021. Evolution holds no liability for subsequent changes made to these clarifications, the future actions of the European Commission or the actions of individual EU nations *** 

The Union Customs Code referred to within this document can be found here.

As the guide has been approved and validated by the European Commission, if any of the key scenarios presented in this guide are not applied in any designated EU country, there is the possibility to file formal complaints in front of the European Commission. This action may require clarification on the documentation requested.

For further assistance please contact us at

Why should a superyacht choose Costa Brava?

The Costa Brava (Rugged Coast) is the northern Catalan coast stretching between France and the region known as Catalunya Nord (Northern Catalonia), earning its name due to the large, unusual rock formations and its wild landscape, both picturesque and captivating.

This region is considered a transit area between the south of France and Barcelona, and Port Vendres, on the French side, provides the perfect pick-up or drop-off point for guests who wish to head to Barcelona or the Balearics.

It is an exclusive and unknown area offering many natural hideouts and protected anchorages from where you can explore hidden, unspoiled areas, many of which only have access from the sea.


The Costa Brava offers an array of possibilities for visitors attracted by the climate, cuisine, natural environment and leisure activities in the area, as well as the hospitality of its people.

The Costa Brava has much to offer its visitors – you can visit eight spectacular natural parks (such as Natural Park of Cape Creus), enjoy exquisite Michelin-star rated cuisine that combines tradition and innovation (El Celler de Can Roca, for example), discover the region’s rich cultural heritage through Greco-Roman ruins, breathtaking villages (such as Port Vendres, Cadaqués, Roses, l’Estartit, Palamós, Calella de Palafrugell, Sant Felíu de Guixols, Tossa de Mar or Pals) and the work of Salvador Dalí. Enjoy an extensive range of memory-making activities that include hot air balloon rides, skiing, golf, water sports, and simply unwinding at one of the region’s many spas.

It is an extraordinary place that invites you to experience all its charm and character to the fullest with first-rate premium experiences and the most exclusive services.


Club Nàutic Feliu de Guíxols

This is a beautiful port, very well placed in Costa Brava to provide shelter during the local Tramuntana winds or uncomfortable seas, with 430 berths for yachts up to 80m. The marina is located right on the edge of the the charming little town of Sant Feliu de Guíxols rich in charming restaurants, shops and hotels.

The marina offers many attractions and facilities: water sports, sailing school and a wide gastronomic range at its first-class restaurant. Close by you can also find a wide variety of anchorage options, for day of watersports or just to enjoy the beautiful views of the coastline.


The Port of Palamós is a unique port located in the important fishing and trading town of Palamós, located in the central zone of the Costa Brava in a natural bay and enjoying an excellent climate.

The port of Palamós is in one of the deepest bays of the western Mediterranean, sheltered from the strong north winds and safe for all types of vessels. It can accommodate vessels up to 150 meters and is a perfect base for exploring the areas of Girona and Emporda.

Port Roses

Port Roses lies on the eastern side of the stunning bay of Roses, at the start of Cap de Creus and just perched on the edge of the town centre, it provides welcome protection from the often-strong winds in this area.  The private marina can offer berths up to 40m and the commercial dock can welcome vessels up to 150m.  The bay also offers a perfect anchorage spot for all sizes.


What truly puts the Costa Brava on the map as a desirable cruising destination are the many protected bays nestled into the convergence of coastal cliffs creating the perfect shelter for anchoring with dramatic views and calm clear waters.

Cala Tamariu. Cala Fornell-Aiguablava. Cala de Montjoi. Puerto de Cadaques. Cala de Port Lligat are just some of our favourites with crystalline waters and plenty flora and fauna to attract divers and snorkelers.


For all Costa Brava based vessels, Kerry Allerton and her team will be your main contact to oversee a smooth and successful visit. They are available 24/7 to provide the necessary and bespoke solutions as well as peace of mind.

The Evolution team in the Costa Brava offers a worry free and rapid procedure if entering the French territorial waters via the France – Spain Mediterranean border, processing and delivering the required SAD clearance, issued by the Port Vendres Customs Authority. Evolution can facilitate vessel clearance into French waters in Port Vendres.

If you are interested in finding out more on any of the above information and more, please contact

Why should a superyacht choose Barcelona?

Barcelona city is Spain’s major Mediterranean port and commercial center, globally known for its unique lifestyle and physical beauty.

Located in the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula and bathed by the Mediterranean Sea, Barcelona is a city very well connected by land, sea and air. The Pyrenees mountains, the dramatic coastline of the Costa Brava, vineyards and beautiful Catalan hills are all within a few hours drive and its international airport provides a quick connection with all the major capital cities of the world.


Thanks to its privileged location, Barcelona enjoys a warm and pleasant climate throughout the year, meaning a multitude of cultural and recreational activities are available for outdoor lovers.

Some of the main tourist attractions of the city are the impressive architectural jewels of modernism designed by Antoni Gaudí, such as Sagrada Familia or Park Güell. You must not forget to visit the emblematic districts of El Gótico (where you can visit the Gothic Cathedral), Montjuic (with the Spanish Village and the Montjuic Fountain) or the Picasso Museum.

Another of its great attractions is not only the richness and variety of Catalan gastronomy but its world-class standing in terms of high quality and Michelin-starred restaurants. For those looking for international flavor and creativity, there are 22 Michelin starred restaurants to choose from. 

Not forgetting also that the primary cava production area lay less than an hour away as well as the red wine havens of Priorat and Emporda, offering a wonderful day out for tastings, tours and lunches.


Barcelona’s main marinas are located only 20 minutes by road from the international airport and a few minutes from the city center.

Marina Port Vell

Marina Port Vell is the most elegant destination for superyachts, perfectly positioned in the heart of Barcelona, a few minutes walk from the city center and the beach and 25 minutes from main airpot in Barcelona. Originally built for the 1992 Olympic Games, the marina completed its transformation into a luxury facility a few years ago and now offers 151 berth for yachts up to 190 meters with a crew gym, crew social area, parking, storage and high security.

Thanks to its location, luxury facilities and professional services, Marina Port Vell guarantees a perfect and complete experience for both crew and guests.

Marina Vela Barcelona

Marina Vela Barcelona has 130 berths available for vessels from 12 to 90 meters. This new marina is located at the entry of the port and it is mainly focused to 45-50mts vessels. W Hotel and MB92 shipyard are 2 minutes away and the center town 7 minutes by taxi ride.

Offering parking, good storage facilities (40m2 spaces), tender dry-docking as well as restaurants and exclusive office spaces for yacht services within the newly renovated complex, this marina is a very welcome newcomer to the Barcelona superyacht scene.

If there is something that stands out about this marina, it is its accessibility and privacy. The innovative facilities and excellent services tucked away from the beating heart of the city, yet still within reach, makes Marina Vela Barcelona a smart choice for captains and Owners.

Port Fòrum

Port Fòrum lay a little further north of the city at only 15 minutes by car and public transport and offers within its facilities more than 200 berths from 10 to 80 meters in length, distributed over 7 pontoons.

Located closed to the modern Diagonal Mar neighborhood, you can find shops, parks, restaurants, major hotels and various sports, leisure and commercial activities close by without needing to head to the city center, turning it one of the quietest ports in Barcelona. The marina also offers tender storage and maintenance and contractor services within its grounds.


Thanks to more tan 10 years of experience, our local knowledge and a Good relationship with the local authorities,the Evolution team in Barcelona offers comprehensive and complete service that guarantee an exceptional and stress-free stay in the city and surroundings.

Our Provisions & Interior department, led by Colin and Mónica, partner with the best suppliers near and far to guarantee top quality products, custom prepare adn packaged and delivered at your convenience.

Clara manages our Customs & Logistics team to provide the expertise needed in this difficult sector, from transportation of tenders and high value owner ítems to every day shipping and Storage solutions.

Dani, Mila and Ignaci run our Contractors & Spares team, offering in-depth knowledge of technical and mechanical systems and spare parts onboard and can recommend the best local skilled support to achieve your projects.

For all your crew and Concierge support such as itineraries, port clearance, reservations, medical, immigration, accommodation, transport services and much more Kerry and Sonia are available 24/7 to provide the necessary solutions as well as peace of mind.

In order to guarantee these services and many more, the team is available 24/7 by email and you can find us during office hours strategically positioned between MB92 and Marina Port Vell at Passeig Joan de Borbó, 80-84, Local L, 08003, Barcelona.

If you are interested in finding out more on any of the above information and more, please contact us at

EVOLUTION is still here to stay

Same team, same spirit, same dedication to service, stronger than ever.

Evolution Yacht Agents is and remains the leading yacht agent in Spain, here to serve our clients and continue with our legacy in Spanish waters and beyond. Our brand is stronger than ever, and our team is more ambitious than ever! 

Evolution was born more than 10 years ago in the Balearics and Barcelona, conceived by the company directors Beatriz Alonso and Belen Martin who continue to lead the growing EvoFamily with their passion and dedication to our clients. 

Evolution offers a full range of services 24/7 in all Spanish ports as well as in Portugal and Gibraltar:


Evolution is the only company in Spain offering all these services in-house as a licensed agent and service provider.  Using Evolution guarantees that your vessel is in the safest hands possible.

We have a lot of plans for the near future but for now we believe it is time to take care of our home, Spain as we have done so far, under the unique EVOLUTION brand as an independent business.– Bea Alonso, CEO & Managing Partner

Evolution is a unique lifestyle…there is no other way for it to be. It is with a great deal of pride that we see all the clients and team at Evolution living the lifestyle, and enjoying it, over the past 10 years of history of the Company. And we wish to keep the same feeling in the future .– Belén Martín, Managing Partner

We have built our company and our reputation thanks to our hard-working team of professionals, always by your side. We are proud to return to our origins and regain our brand so that we may continue to pave our own path as we always have, for an independent future bigger and brighter than ever.  Please join us for the ride!

Why should a superyacht choose Valencia?

Valencia, one of the most dynamic cities in Spain, is a recommended visit when in Mediterranean waters.

The city is perfectly connected, with most of its gastronomic offer, cultural sites and international airport located only 20min from the main marinas, making it a perfect destination for both yacht crew and guests.


Valencia, the third largest city in Spain, offers a great variety of cultural treasures, world-class restaurants, stunning beaches and plenty of entertainment.

The historic center of this Mediterranean metropolis will take your breath away, with buildings such as the Central Market, one of the most beautiful markets in Europe, and the Torres de Serrano where you can take in a panoramic view of the city. Another must-see is the City of Arts and Sciences, the world-famous cultural leisure complex designed by the renowned Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava.

In addition, Valencia is best known for being the birthplace of delicious Paella and tasty Valencian horchata – a popular drink made of chufas, which are tiger nuts. Make sure you don’t leave the city without enjoying both things by the beach!


Valencia’s main marinas are located only 20 minutes by road from the international airport, city center and all gastronomic, sports, cultural and historical offerings, making this city a perfect yacht destination for both crew and guests.

Due to its strategic location, many yachts decide to choose Valencia as a winter base or standby port prior to departing for other destinations such as Palma, Ibiza or Gibraltar. This is usually a very cost-efficient option considering the city’s competitive berthing rates and low utility fees in comparison to other European Ports.

Valencia Mar

This marina is in a quiet, private and well-protected area of the city’s main port, offering round the clock access and security. It offers 18 berths for yachts over 60m and up to 120m.

All superyacht berths here are either on floating pontoons or fixed concrete, providing a lot of ease and safety in the berthing maneuvers.

Valencia Mar is located in a privileged environment, near the Natural Park of El Saler, a few meters away from the beach, 10 minutes from the city and 20 minutes from the International Airport of Manises. They offer a very wide range of activities for the crew’s interest, such as paddle surf, scuba diving and even summer concerts with a view at their cozy terrace, called “La Barraquita”.

La Marina de València

Located next to the promenade of the Cabañal Beach, La Marina de València has become an emerging socio-cultural highlight in the city. Culture coexists with sports, tourism and gastronomy, in a waterfront complex that is already established as a district of innovation.

Among other facilities, this marina offers two docks: The Outer Dock and The Inner Dock, with more than 900 moorings and first-class facilities, able to accommodate yachts from 8 to 150 m.

Varadero Valencia Shipyard

Varadero Valencia is conveniently located in the Real Club Nautico de Valencia, just 15 minutes from the high-speed train station (AVE) and the international airport, and only 5 km away from the city center by public transportation or bicycle. This shipyard offers a team of highly qualified specialists and a comprehensive range of services for the repair and maintenance of yachts, in a facility of 28,000m² outdoors and a 400m² covered warehouse with room for yachts up to 45m.

All in all, Valencia is the perfect combination of the traditional and modern side of Spain, offering everything a yacht could need for its crew and guests on board.


Evolution’s office in Valencia is led by Cristina, Valencian native who has previously worked as a purser on board superyachts. She is an expert in all the current yachting and COVID-related regulations affecting this area and not only provides assistance in Valencia, but also in Alicante and Denia.

She knows the region inside out, and over the years has managed to build a wide and solid network of contacts making sure you’re in the best hands when visiting this area in the Mediterranean coast.

Evolution can also open and manage TPAs in the Valencia area and guide crew, management and contractors through the whole process so that yachts can benefit from this tax regime exempt of VAT charges on repairs and maintenance.

If you are interested in finding out more on any of the above information and more, please contact Cristina at