Best Time to Go to Cuba

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An excellent period to visit the island is from December till May, since this is the dry season with lower temperatures. The warm and humid season runs from May till November. The hurricane season starts from June till November. You get the best prices for hotel accommodation and travel fares in the low season February till May.

The highest prices for accommodation are paid in July, August and December.

Cuba Flights

Several airlines fly to Caribbean island : 

From the United Kingdom:
Virgin Atlantic flights from London Gatwick to Havana International airport 

From the Netherlands and From Belgium:
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Departure from Shiphol Airport Cubajet.com 

Departure from Brussels Belgium Jetairfly.com

Cheap flights from Brussels From Germany:
Condor Air Berlin 

From France:
Air France Flights from Paris 

From Spain:
Iberia airlines Flights from Madrid 

From Jamaica:
Air Jamaica Travel from Kingston 

From Canada:
Cubana Cuban Airlines
Air Canada Flights

From Mexico:
Cubana Airlines

From Bahamas:
Bahamasair

Cuban Airports
Domestic Airlines
Cuba Tourism

US Citizen Travel to Cuba

There are no regular direct flights from the USA to the island (except for some charters for US citizens with an official OFAC license) It is forbidden for (US) Americans to travel to the country without permission (OFAC license)of the the Treasury department in Washington DC. 

Some people ignore this law by travelling via Cancun-Mexico or Toronto-Canada, according to estimates this should be more than 100,000 persons.

The Cuban authorities do not stamp the US passports.

WARNING 

US citizens can be fined heavily, up to 250,000 USD and imprisoned up to 10 years if they break this law by travelling to Cuba.

Note: The import of all Cuban stuff such as T-shirts, cigars and rum is strictly forbidden and any indication that a person has travelled to the island can lead to further investigations by the US authorities.

Travel Documents

UPDATE MAY 2010 

As of May 1 2010 a valid travel insurance to enter the country is needed.

No US companies can insure the US citizens in Cuba. Some observers think that the rationale behind this measure is, to eliminate travelers in search for (free) cheap medical treatment. 

Visitors arriving in Cuba without an insurance coverage can buy a policy at the airport from the Cuban company ASISTUR

COVERAGE

  • Medical expenses due to sudden diseases/accidents 10,000 CUC 
  • Repatriation and transport 10,000 CUC
  • Personal Civil Liability 10,000 CUC
  • Advance of judical bail bond 5,000 CUC
  • Assistance 1,000 CUC

PREMIUM per visitor per day 2.5 CUC (1 CUC = 1.08 USD)

An extra premium of 2.00 CUC per day should be paid for people older than 70 years.

For most tourists a valid passport with a validity date of at least 6 months after the departure date and a tourist visa ("tarjeta tourista") is needed. 

A (free) stay at the home of a local family is strictly forbidden. The Cuban can be severely fined for this (up to 1000 dollar – a small fortune for the average citizen) The tourist card ("tarjeta turista") can be bought at the Cuban embassy in your country or at the airports on the island. Most tour operators deliver the tourist card with their travel package.

Import and Export

An extensive list of materials, devices, foods, animals can not be imported into the country. Pay special attention to : fresh food, fruits, computers, satelite phones

Read more: Customs For export of art items and paintings special permission is needed. 

The customs officer may ask: "What's the purpose of your voyage?". For a tourist,the answer is easy: "vacation or a tourist trip". 

But business people, journalists, camera crews, students etc. need a special visa to enter the country.

What to Bring in ?

It's permitted to bring in personal toiletries in acceptable quantities. 

Take with you materials or things difficult to find on the island such as : batteries, film, condoms, sanitary towels, tissues, shampoo. 

Medicines are hard to find, if you are under medical treatment take enough supply with you. 

A small supply of common medicines: aspirin, anti-diarrhoea, antibiotics, bandages, a small first aid kit. 

A pocket flashlight can be very helpful in Havana, sometimes there are power-outages and in the Old city are lots of sewers without covers.

If you want to help a local family, they will be grateful for soap, shampoo, toothpaste and toothbrushes, medicines and clothing. 

The import of medicines in their original package is allowed up to 10 kg.

Visitors per Country of Origin

  • CANADA................602,377
  • U.K...................199,399
  • SPAIN.................194,103
  • VENEZUELA.............185,157
  • ITALY.................169,317
  • GERMANY...............124,527
  • FRANCE................107,518
  • MEXICO.................89,154
  • NETHERLANDS............37,818
  • U.S.A..................37,233
  • PORTUGAL...............28,780
  • ARGENTINA..............24,922
  • SWITSERLAND............21,918
  • BELGIUM................20,813
  • RUSSIA.................20,711
  • CHILE..................16,744
  • AUSTRIA................16,222
  • COLUMBIA...............16,175
  • BRAZIL.................15,836
  • FILIPINAS..............13,389
  • DENMARK.................9,163
  • CHINA...................8,700
  • POLAND..................8,295
  • GUATEMALA...............8,060
  • IRELAND.................7,492
  • Total year 2005 : 2,319,334

(source: Cuban Goverment Statistics)


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