The new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) ROAM App can now be used when entering at state of Washington and Alaska Ports of Entry. The App can make your arrival reporting with U.S. Customs a lot easier. Reporting Offsite Arrival – Mobile, ROAM App, is an App that can now be used at Washington pleasure craft Port Of Entry locations including Anacortes, Point Roberts, Friday Harbor, Roche Harbor, and Port Angeles. In Alaska the App can be used at Ketchikan and Wrangell Ports of Entry. This official CBP App will support Apple IOS and Google Android phones and tablet mobile devices. Travelers entering the U.S. can check-in with the App, and CBP officers can initiate a video chat for information verification, or an interview if required. If approved for entry, boaters do not have to report in-person at a Port of Entry.

To use the ROAM App, input your biographic, vessel, and trip details into the App. Then submit your arrival for CBP Officer review by pressing the App’s Report Arrival selection on your mobile device. A CBP Officer may initiate a video chat to further interview travelers. Once the CBP Officer reviews the information, you will receive a notification and email with your clearance status and next steps, if applicable. The App needs to have cellular data connection or Wifi service to report and process your arrival. The App works best with 4G or LTE cell service. However, boaters are successfully using it on 3G as well.

The ROAM App can be used by U.S. and foreign travelers to report arrival. You don’t need to be part of a trusted traveler program to use ROAM. Reporting arrival in-person at one of the Port of Entry locations is still available. Travelers requiring a cruising license, or that must pay duties, will need to report in person to CBP at the nearest Port of Entry. Travelers with I-68 or Nexus may still report by calling the CBP Small Boat Reporting Office; however, this option may be replaced by ROAM at some future date.

To install and prepare the App, you will need an IOS or Android phone or tablet with camera. You will also need an email address. The App is free and available from the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

To get started, download, install and prepare the App on your mobile device.

1. Download and install the App from the Apple App or Google Play store.

2. Setup a account (if you don’t already have one). is a U.S. General Services Administration website and service, providing a single sign-in account to multiple participating government programs. If you are already enrolled in Nexus you probably already have a account. The account is needed to save your App profile information for future use.

a. You can create an account from the ROAM App or at the Help menu selection at website. You will need an email address.

3. Open and configure the ROAM App.

a. Sign-in to the App with your account information
b. Add information about your mode of transportation – your boat (make, year,
registration number, length). You can add and save information for more than one boat.
c. Add information about the travelers who will be on your boat when reporting in with
ROAM. The App has a feature to populate the traveler information by scanning each
person’s travel document. Travel documents accepted include: Passport, Passport Card,
Nexus, Enhanced U.S. Drivers License, Global Entry, Birth Certificate (kids 15 and under),
Permanent Resident Card.
d. With the App, take a picture of each person’s travel document.

That’s it. You’re now ready to use ROAM App to report your arrival into U.S. waters.

To use the ROAM App and report arrival:

1. Enter U.S. waters. You need to be within U.S. waters in order to report your arrival. Report
Arrival requests made outside of U.S. waters will be rejected.
2. Ensure that you have a good cell signal and that you will be able to maintain cell coverage.
3. Open and sign-in to the ROAM App.
4. Press the Report Arrival selection; select the mode of transportation (boat) and select
travelers from saved profile information; designate one of the selected travelers as the
vessel master; answer all detail and declaration questions; then submit the Arrival Report.
5. You will receive a notification on the App and an email message to the email address on
your account profile. The notification will provide you with a clearance, or
instructions for further processing; which may include instructions to proceed to a Port of
Entry location for in-person processing.

The ROAM App is currently available for download from the Google Play and Apple App stores. For more about ROAM on the CBP website, see


Read the article – New ROAM App Replaces Small Vessel Reporting System

~ Leonard & Lorena Landon, Managing Editors, Waggoner Cruising Guide