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Back on June 16, 2017, President Donald Trump, had announced changes for the United States being involved with Cuba. What does this exactly mean for U.S. Citizens when traveling to Cuba moving forward.
Actually not much, accept for clients looking to visit Cuba, which many people contacting either myself or Nelson, don't realize that you must follow certain guidelines and have certain documentation prior to entering Cuba, you cannot get off the plane or ship without a few things to consider. We also suggest that if you are looking for a more economical way of traveling there, a cruise is the most economical way to go. With the restrictions and the pricing that will go up with the current Administration, we do not get political. We just give you the truth about traveling. That the Destination Tour Companies that Echevarria Travel uses to go on a land tour will jump in price due to the pricing and restrictions at hotels and more.
With a cruise, your hotel is your ship, so they cannot taxes extra on something that is in the water and not on the land itself, the port charges might go up, but at this time there doesn't seem that the cruise lines are doing this, but come in the future that might change. So stay tuned for updates on that.
First, All U.S. Citizen must have passports traveling to Cuba. Those who have cruised before with just a birth certified because it is considered a Cruise lines with closed loop cruises may permit passengers to sail using a birth certificate and photo i.d. You cannot do this with Cuba, you must have a US Valid Passport that will expire 6 months after your trip, not before. Everyone including infants. Please resources tab on our website for more on obtaining a US Passport.
All guests are required to obtain a visa in order to enter Cuba. The type of visa that a guest will need will depend on certain factors, including the reason for travel to Cuba. Most guests will be able to enter Cuba using a "Tarjeta Turistica" (or tourist card) visa. You can purchase this visa from the cruise line at a cost of $75 per person. The visa is distributed at the time of boarding. Alternatively you can obtain a visa from the Cuban consulate or a visa service, but going through a cruise line is a major benefit.
Pay the health insurance fee: The Cuban government requires all guests to purchase health insurance, which will be automatically included in port charges. Your medical insurance is not good in Cuba and will not be accepted should you become ill or worse have gotten hurt while traveling.
Book shore excursions: Half-day and full –day shore excursions offered by any tour company must meet the U.S. government’s people-to-people educational activities requirement. You just cannot head off the plane or cruise-ship and head to the beach or other on your own tours. Many of the tours are designed in order to have guests interact with small family-run operations to give them an authentic Cuban experience. The cruise lines have done all the legwork in creating meaningful experiences that meet all U.S. regulatory requirements.
Bring Cash or Convert Money - ATMs and U.S. Credit Cards will not work in Cuba.
Staying in touch online: Wi-Fi in Cuba requires the use of cards with codes at Internet spots located usually around major hotels. You are best off sharing experiences with your friends at home using the ship's Internet access. If you want to use your cellphones, check with the provider about service and fees in Cuba.
Echevarria Travel will hosting a Group Cruise to Cuba in 2018; no dates as of yet, please contact us if you are interested in visiting this historic destination.
Please indicate below, so we can add you to an existing list for 2018; cruises sail from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and Tampa to Cuba. Until further notice, the current time frames for 2018 are March - December 2018; more than likely we will be cruising April or May 2018.
Cheryl Echevarria writes about what things to help her clients when planning their next Dream Vacation, especially our clients and future clients that travel independently but has a special need for arranging them. Whether it is a medical issues or a access or disability.