Is it difficult to travel to Cuba?

As with many travel experiences flexibility and patience are key to having a positive experience on your trip. Especially in Cuba, things are changing very rapidly. Your itinerary is subject to change, and your local guide and tour leader will do their best to keep you informed and up to date with any changes in scheduled activities. Back to Top

Do I need a Visa?

All US citizens are required to have a tourist visa to travel to Cuba. Your visa will be purchased in conjunction with your plane ticket to Cuba (see below). We will provide you with your visa and plane ticket when you meet your airport liaison coordinator at the airport in Miami before your charter flight to Cuba. Back to Top

How do I book my flight to Cuba?

We will book your international flight to Cuba from Miami using a licensed charter company authorized to provide U.S. citizens with legal flights direct to Cuba. As these are charter flights, you won’t find these flights available online or through a commercial U.S. airline as this time. Although we expect commercial flights will be initiated in the near future, until then we are using the charter flight service. The flight from Miami to Havana takes roughly 45 minutes. The plane is typically a Boeing 737 jet, which is six seats wide, three seats on each row. On occasion there are smaller planes that are used for this flight.

Your charter flight is an additional cost to the tour cost. This cost includes:
• Roundtrip charter flight Miami to Cuba
• Tourist travel visa to Cuba
• Cuban airport departure tax

Check-in at the airport can be lengthy because of heavy US government regulations on travel to Cuba. This process must comply fully with Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations, and the DOT requires that all flight documents be submitted at least one-and-a-half hours before departure, which means air counter agents must close the counter one-and-a-half hours prior to departure. For this reason, charter check-in must start four hours before departure. We will do our very best to make this process go as smoothly as possible, but it’s important to prepare to wait and be patient at check-in. Back to Top

Are there luggage limits on flights to Cuba?

Cuba is hot and tropical. Light-weight, quick-dry apparel is recommended and it’s best to pack light. Each passenger will have all of his or her baggage weighed together, including the carry-on luggage. All baggage up to 44 pounds is free of charge. Weight exceeding this limit will be charged $2 per pound with a maximum of 77 lbs total for all baggage. It is not necessary to check baggage if the total baggage is less than 18 lbs. This total baggage weight of 18 pounds includes your carry-on. Back to Top

What happens upon arrival into Cuba?

On arrival, you proceed to immigration control and present your passport and visa to the immigration officer. You will have your photo taken. Following this, they will buzz you through a door and you will be transported into the baggage claim. At times the luggage retrieval can be slow. Please remember to be patient! After exiting the airport, you will meet your tour leader, local guide, and driver and board the vehicle to begin your Cuban Wildland Adventure. Back to Top

Can I use U.S. Dollars?

US dollars are not accepted in Cuba. Although credit and debit cards are now permitted to be used in Cuba, they still do not work. Travelers checks as well do not work. It is necessary that you bring cash for all of your needs. Although each person is different, we recommend that you bring between $75-90 dollars per day for your trip. It is always better to have more cash than you estimate you’ll need with you, and know that if you forget something you need like an umbrella or specialty item, you probably will not be able to obtain one in Cuba. There are no ATMs in Cuba. Back to Top

Are gratuities expected in Cuba?

Tipping is a very important part of the tourism industry in Cuba. In a country where the majority of citizens make $15-30 CUC [87 CUC to 100 USD.] per month, tipping is the predominant reason why people get involved in the tourism industry. While tipping is a matter of personal preference, we often are asked for a guideline. Here are suggested amounts for the various individuals you may choose to tip while in Cuba. Your tour leader will be taking care of all tips related to baggage services and meals included in the itinerary. Back to Top

What is the currency exchange for travel to Cuba?

There are two currencies that are in circulation in Cuba: The Cuban Peso, which is used by local Cubans for public transportation and local markets, and the CUC, the convertible peso. The CUC is the currency travelers to Cuba use. You can exchange money at any hotel or money exchange house. Back to Top

Will my cell phone work when I travel to Cuba?

Your cell phone will not work in Cuba, though now Verizon and Sprint offer roaming services. In order to avoid charges, we recommend turning off your cellular data and turning your phone to airplane mode. If you need to make a phone call to the US when you are in Cuba, you can do so from your hotel in Havana at a cost of about $2.50 dollars a minute. Many of the hotels in Cuba now offer WI-FI service. The internet can be very slow and sometimes not work at all, and so it’s best to advise your family and friends that you will be out of touch during your time in Cuba. Back to Top

Is travel in Cuba safe?

Violent crime is extremely rare throughout Cuba, but you should take the same simple precautions as you do in any city in the world to avoid pickpockets and sketchy areas at night (as advised by your guide). Back to Top

What is the food like traveling in Cuba?

While Cuba is not necessarily a culinary destination, the quality of food has improved greatly in recent years. The local Cuban diet is heavy on rice, beans, and animal protein (pork, chicken, fish, beef). There are many new paladars (private restaurants) catering to international tastes blending fresh local and organic tropical fruits and vegetables, with seafood or domestic meats, combined with growing interest in fusion cuisines. We can arrange vegetarian plates at dinner and lunch with advanced notice, however if you have special dietary needs, we will need to know these in advance. Low-carb and gluten-free options are difficult but not impossible to provide travelers in Cuba. Your local guide and tour leader will have many recommendations for local paladares that you will have the opportunity to eat at for your dinners on your own. Also, there is always the option to eat in the hotel. Back to Top

Can I drink the water when traveling in Cuba?

We recommend only drinking purified water including for teeth brushing. Bottled water is widely available, however as part of our Travelers Against Plastics campaign, we request guests avoid or minimize use of disposable plastic water bottles and bring a personal water purifier. It is very important to keep well hydrated in Cuba as it can be warm and in the summertime it can be very humid. Back to Top

Can I hear live music in Cuba?

Cuba has exceptional live music of all types of genres. There is live music every night in Havana. Much of the music starts very late, at 11-12pm. Your local guide and tour leader will be able to help you with buying tickets and special live music venues.. Back to Top

What is the weather like in Cuba?

Cuba is a tropical climate. Prepare for daytime temperatures ranging in 70-85 degrees in the winter, with warmer, more humid climates in the spring, summer and fall. It can drop in temperatures in the winter at night, and so it’s best to pack a light jacket or sweater. While rainstorms are very infrequent and often quickly over, feel free to pack a light rain jacket or umbrella. It can come in handy for bright, sunny days. Back to Top

Do I need immunizations to travel to Cuba?

No inoculations are currently required for travel to Cuba. However, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommend that all international travelers have up-to-date tetanus, polio and hepatitis A vaccinations. For more details, please visit the CDC webpage on Cuba. Make sure you bring sunscreen to protect yourself, and drink lots of non-alcoholic drinks during your trip. Back to Top

What is the time zone in Cuba?

Cuba is in the same time zone as U.S. Eastern Standard Time. Daylight savings time is observed each spring and fall. Back to Top

Do you recommend travel insurance for travel to Cuba?

Included in your charter flight is medical insurance that covers up to $1,000 in medical emergencies. We highly recommend you purchase your own evacuation, trip cancellation, and additional medical insurance. We highly recommend travel insurance with Travelex, especially for trip cancellation and trip interruption (for reasons often related to illness or accident before departure, or weather disruptions when you travel), as well as medical coverage for accident, illness, or evacuation expenses during your trip. To learn more about policies from Travelex and sign up see their website: Travelex or call them directly at 1-800-228-9792 referencing our location number: 47-0066. Back to Top

What should I pack for a trip to Cuba?

When packing, please keep in mind: versatility, modesty, and ease for washing and drying. While it will occasionally be possible to have your laundry done at a hotel, plan to be able to wash out some clothes in the sink if necessary. Cuba is very casual in its dress attire, and at no point will you need ‘fancy’ evening wear. Think cool, clean, and comfortable. Comfortable shoes for walking in Cuba are a must! Make sure to bring a light sweater or jacket as temperatures can be cool at night, and sometimes air-conditioning can be especially cold. Back to Top

What is the most important thing to bring on my trip to Cuba?

Pack your patience and be flexible! As tourism in Cuba is rapidly evolving, policies and itineraries can change without notice. Part of the fun and adventure that is Cuba is the serendipity of change and the opportunities it presents for new experiences. We will take care of all the arrangements and keep you informed of new developments before you go, and once there your local Cuban host will take over as your in-country fixer to navigate the Cuban system. Back to Top