US Travel to Cuba in 2020 - How Americans can still travel to Cuba
Over the last several years, US travel to Cuba has gone through many changes. I have witnessed it firsthand, leading tours across the island, cruising to Cuba, and investigating for my book, Cubicle to Cuba. As I find it is hard to get accurate and current travel information about US travel to Cuba, I'm going to tell it to you straight. Americans can still travel to Cuba!
What has changed with US Travel to Cuba
There have been a few recent waves of change in regards to US Travel to Cuba: June 4th 2019, October 25th, 2019, and January 10th, 2020. If you want every last detail, click the links above or continue reading to learn exactly how you can still travel to Cuba.
How to Get to Cuba: Commercial and/or Charter Flights in and out of Havana
As of the most recent change, commercial and charter flights will continue to fly in and out of Havana's International Airport; however, there will not be flights to other Cuban cities. You can still fly American, Delta, Jet Blue, and others to Havana's José Martí airport from New York, Houston, and many Florida airports. If you are interested in exploring other cities like Trinidad, Cienfuegos, Viñales, and Varadero, you will need to use private drivers and/or the Viazul bus. When you do book your trip, make sure to visit this list of best travel sites for some extra savings on flights and lodging.
Support of the Cuban People
Like before, the US Treasury Department and its Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) allows travel to Cuba if the type of travel fits within defined categories. Currently, there are eleven ways to legally travel to Cuba. The most popular and my suggestion is Support of the Cuban People. You will select this option when you purchase your visa from your airline. You are then responsible for a full-time itinerary of activities that demonstrate support of private businesses (BnBs, private restaurants, artists, drivers, etc.) and democracy. You will need to keep a record of your full-time 7-8 hours a day of activities. You can do this through a travel journal, your note function in your smartphone, but also with pictures. You will need to keep these records for five years so that in the case that you are audited by the U.S. government that you would be able to prove your legal travel to Cuba.
- Cuba is Cash ONLY - I would suggest $100-$150 per day as there are no US debit or credit cards accepted.
- Bring toilet paper and hand sanitizer.
- Pack your patience. There is no New York minute in Cuba.
When to go?
November through mid-May is a great time of year to travel to Cuba. From late May through the summer and early fall, it is very hot and humid with a chance of tropical storms as well as hurricanes.
Why travel to Cuba?
I have written a book about why. It is called Cubicle to Cuba: Desk Job to Dream Job. Pick up a copy of it. However, I've shared why you should travel to Cuba in many blog posts and interviews in the past. Here are some of my favorites:
- Top 5 Things to Do in Havana
- 4 Best Adventure Destinations in Cuba
- 5 Things You Don't Know About Cuba But Should
- US Travel to Cuba Tips
- Falling in Love with Cuba
Ready to Travel to Cuba?
As always, here's to looking up!