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Entry to Cuba: Visas & Travel Requirements

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Stay updated with the latest travel information for your trip to Cuba!

Embarking on a journey to Cuba? Here's your guide to the latest visa requirements and travel protocols. Whether you're coming from North America, Europe, or elsewhere, we've got you covered.

cuba travel visa

Cuba visa application form

What are the visa and entry requirements to Cuba?

US Citizens

Planning a trip to Cuba as a US citizen? There are special regulations you need to be aware of. While tourism trips to Cuba aren't yet authorized, general licenses have been issued for a variety of travel categories. If you meet the requirements of the general license under which they plan to travel, you won't need to apply for another permit from the OFAC (Office of Foreign Assets Control of the Treasury Department) for your trip.

However, it's important to note that the US Embassy in Havana and the State Department in Washington D.C do not process visa applications for trips to Cuba. If you need to apply for a visa or have any questions regarding your specific case, you should contact the Cuban Embassy in Washington D.C.

And remember, certain activities may not be allowed, so it's best to check with the US embassy for information on organizations or businesses in Cuba that U.S. citizens are not allowed to engage with due to economic sanctions or other legal restrictions.

Canadian Citizens

As a Canadian citizen, you'll need a valid passport for the duration of your stay in Cuba. Make sure your passport's expiration date isn't near to avoid any travel hiccups. Depending on your trip's purpose, you may need different types of visas. If you're traveling as a tourist, you'll need a tourist visa, which can be obtained from tour operators, airlines, or a Cuban government office in Canada.

European Citizens

If you're a European citizen planning to travel to Cuba, remember that visa protocols can vary depending on your country of residence. For most European citizens, a valid passport is required during your stay in Cuba. Some countries, like Spain, require the passport to be valid for at least 6 months.

It's also important to note that if you plan to travel to the United States after visiting Cuba, you'll need a visa. This is because the electronic system for travel authorization (ESTA) is not sufficient for those who have traveled to Cuba before. This visa must be obtained at the Consulate General of the US Embassy in your place of residence.

Given the varying requirements, it's a good idea to contact your tour operator or travel agency to understand the specific visa requirements for your travel.

Latin American Citizens

For Latin American citizens, a valid passport is required during your stay in Cuba. You'll also need to obtain a tourist visa or tourist card for your trip. This can be processed at tourism agencies or airlines, which usually handle its issuance.

The visa is generally issued for about 90 days and can then be extended. It's also important to note that you should have travel insurance with medical coverage. 

Visa Costs: What to Expect

Visa costs can vary depending on where it's issued. Generally, prices range between $20 and $80. If you apply online, additional charges may apply, and prices can range from $110 to $150.

cuba travel visa

Jose Marti International Airport in Havana

What items can I bring to Cuba?

When packing for your trip to Cuba, you can bring personal effects, including personal phones and computers, free of charge. The range of objects you can bring to Cuba is quite wide, from musical instruments to televisions. However, some items may be subject to charges depending on Customs regulations.

Some items can be brought into the country without having to pay any import taxes. These include used personal objects, art and literature books, music discs, manufactured pharmaceutical products, and wheelchairs, among others.

However, it's crucial to be aware of prohibited items. While some of these, like explosives, drugs and narcotics, and blood derivatives, may seem obvious, others might surprise you. For instance, literature, articles or objects that are considered obscene, pornographic or that attack the general interests of the nation are also prohibited.

If you attempt to bring into the country articles that are not allowed for import, the General Customs of Cuba can exercise administrative sanctions. This means that Customs can seize those imported articles whose entry is prohibited in Cuba, as well as products that have been entered with a fraudulent declaration.

cuba travel visa

Travelers on a beach in Varadero

Photo: Unsplash

Health and Vaccinations

Before you embark on your journey to Cuba, it's important to ensure you're up to date with routine vaccines. This includes vaccines against chickenpox, tetanus, influenza, rubella, and polio. In the current climate, being vaccinated against COVID-19 is also essential.

Additionally, consider getting vaccinated against Hepatitis A and Hepatitis B. If your trip to Cuba includes exploring nature or venturing into rural areas away from the city center for activities such as outdoor camping, the rabies vaccine is also recommended. Travelers are also advised to consider the typhus vaccine.

Can I bring my pet to Cuba?

If you're planning to bring your pet to Cuba, there are a few requirements you need to meet. Make sure your pet has the necessary vaccines and an official health certificate. You'll also need to request a travel certificate for your pet from the Consulate or Embassy of Cuba in your country.

Written by Teresita Padrón .

Published July 2023.

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Travel Advisory January 5, 2024

Cuba - level 2: exercise increased caution.

Reissued with updates to crime information.

Exercise increased caution in Cuba due to  crime .

Country Summary:  Petty crime is a threat for tourists in Cuba. Also, violent crime, including armed robbery and homicide, sometimes occurs in Cuba.

Travel outside of the Havana area for U.S. Embassy employees requires a special notification process which may affect the Embassy’s ability to provide emergency assistance to U.S. citizens in Cuba.

Read the  country information page  for additional information on travel to Cuba.

If you decide to travel to Cuba:

  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
  • Do not display signs of wealth, such as wearing expensive watches or jewelry.
  • Enroll in the  Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)  to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.

U.S. citizens should always exercise caution when traveling abroad:

  • Follow the Department of State on  Facebook  and  Twitter .
  • Review the  Country Security Report  for Cuba.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the  Traveler’s Checklist .

Embassy Messages

View Alerts and Messages Archive

Quick Facts

Must have six months validity at the time of entry.

Two pages are required for entry/exit stamps.

Yes. Travel to Cuba for tourist activities remains prohibited by statute. See 31 C.F.R 515.560 and OFAC's Frequently Asked Questions .

None. See CDC for recommendations.

U.S. credit and debit cards do not work in Cuba. You should bring U.S. dollars or Euros to Cuba and exchange them for Cuban Pesos (CUP) at authorized banks, CADECA offices, airports or hotels. Travelers should confirm alternative payment options before traveling, as policies concerning the use of U.S. dollars in Cuba are subject to change. The Cuban government requires that travelers declare cash amounts over the equivalent of 5,000 USD.

When departing Cuba, we advise U.S. travelers to spend or exchange CUP to a foreign currency well before reaching airport security checkpoints. Currency exchange houses in the departure area at airports are currently closed and Cuban pesos are not internationally convertible outside of Cuba.. International airlines flying to the United States include departure fees and taxes in the price of airline tickets. U.S. dollars are not accepted for payment of any additional products purchased at the airport. Under Cuban law, travelers may export up to the equivalent of 5,000 USD out of the country. Anyone wishing to depart Cuba with more than this amount of cash must demonstrate evidence that the currency was acquired legitimately from a Cuban bank.

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Calzada between L and M Streets, Vedado, Havana, Cuba Telephone:  + (53) (7) 839-4100 (Monday- Friday 0830-1630, except holidays) Emergency after-hours telephone:  + (53) (7) 839-4100 and dial 1 to speak with the emergency operator Fax:  + (53) (7) 839-4247 Website:

Email:   [email protected] (for concerns with U.S. citizens)

Destination Description

Learn about the U.S. relationship to countries around the world.

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Travel to Cuba from or transiting through the United States by persons under U.S. jurisdiction (defined as [BE1] U.S. citizens located anywhere, and anyone located in the United States regardless of citizenship and nationality) , is regulated by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.  All travelers falling under U.S. jurisdiction must comply with these regulations.  Individuals seeking to travel to Cuba are not required to obtain licenses from OFAC if their travel is covered under the 12 travel categories authorized by a general OFAC license.  If travel is not covered by a general license, you must seek OFAC authorization in the form of a specific license .  Travelers who fail to comply with regulations may face penalties and criminal prosecution.  For travel-specific questions, please see  31 C.F.R. 515.560  and  OFAC’s Frequently Asked Questions .

Visit the  Embassy of Cuba  website for the most current visa information.

Cuba requires visitors to have non-U.S. medical insurance, which is usually included in airline ticket prices on flights originating in the United States. If you do not have insurance, it can be purchased upon arrival to Cuba at an airport kiosk.  Asistur Medical Insurance is the official company that airlines contract.  Please confirm your coverage with your airline prior to arrival in Cuba and seek additional medical insurance if needed.

Cuba does not recognize the U.S. citizenship of Cuban-born U.S. citizens who maintain residency status in Cuba.  The Cuban government requires Cuban dual nationals to enter and depart Cuba using Cuban passports. Cuban-born U.S. citizens who maintain their residency status in Cuba will be treated as Cuban citizens and may be subject to Cuban restrictions and legal obligations.  

Some HIV/AIDS entry restrictions exist for visitors to and foreign residents of Cuba.  Foreign students on scholarships are required to test for HIV/AIDS.  Please verify this information with the  Embassy of Cuba  before you travel.

Information about  dual nationality , the  prevention of international child abduction , and  customs regulations  can be found on our websites. 

Cuban Requirements for Authorized Travelers:   Attempts to enter or exit Cuba illegally, or to aid the irregular exit of Cuban nationals or other persons, are prohibited.  Entering Cuban territory, territorial waters, or airspace without prior authorization from the Cuban government may result in arrest.  Immigration violators are subject to prison terms ranging from four to thirty years. 

Temporary Sojourn License:  Most aircraft and maritime vessels on temporary sojourn to Cuba are no longer eligible for an Aircraft, Vessels, and Spacecraft (AVS) License Exception.  See 15 C.F.R. § 740.15.  If you are planning to enter Cuba with a U.S. or foreign-registered aircraft or maritime vessel on temporary sojourn, you must meet the criteria set forth in 15 C.F.R. § 740.15. Please see the U.S. Department of Commerce’s  Bureau of Industry and Security website  for additional information. 

In addition, a vessel of the United States, as defined in 33 C.F.R. §107.200, may not enter Cuban territorial waters without advance permission from the U.S. Coast Guard.  The U.S. Coast Guard provides permission information at (305) 415-6920. 

Safety and Security

The security environment in Cuba is relatively stable and characterized by a strong military and police presence.  Demonstrations are infrequent but can draw violent responses from government forces.  Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational without warning.  Avoid demonstrations and maintain security awareness at all times. Demonstration Alerts are posted on the  Embassy’s website .  Review the  Cuba Travel Advisory .

The Cuban government has detained U.S. citizens suspected of engaging in activities perceived to undermine state security.  The Cuban government may detain individuals for activities that would not be considered criminal or offensive in the United States.

Crime:   With the recent influx of travelers, there has been an increase in the number of property crimes. Crimes of opportunity, such as pick pocketing, purse snatchings, and car break-ins, are on the rise. Exercise vigilance everywhere . Do not display large amounts of cash.  Do not leave your valuables unattended.  Carry money in your front pockets, hold your purse and cellular phone securely and be mindful of purses or bags when dining out. 

  • Do not leave a beverage unattended or accept beverages from persons unknown to you. 
  • Locations such as Habana Vieja, Playas del Este, Varadero, and other attractions tend to have a higher incidence of property crime than other parts of Cuba. 
  • Be wary of misdirection schemes where someone attempts to gain your attention while another comes from behind to steal your purse, wallet, or other valuable items. 
  • If confronted by criminals, do not resist, try to remain calm, clearly display your hands and do not make any sudden moves that could be interpreted as resistance. 
  • Carry a cell phone with Cuban cellular service for emergency communications and travel in groups if possible. 
  • Be aware of your surroundings, especially at night or when traveling in an unfamiliar area. 
  • While in your car, place valuables out of sight or in a locked trunk.  When unattended, avoid leaving items in the car, especially on the seat or in plain view.
  • Only use marked taxis. 
  • Carry a copy of your passport and secure the original. 
  • Beware of scam artists, who may speak English and appear friendly. 
  • When exchanging currency, use the state-run offices known as CADECAs or official banks.

International Financial Scams:  See the  Department of State  and the  FBI  pages for information. 

Victims of Crime:   We strongly urge U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault to contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.  Report crimes to the local police by dialing 106 and contact the U.S. Embassy at +53 7839-4100.  Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes. 

See our webpage on  help for U.S. victims of crime overseas . 

We can: 

  • help you find medical care 
  • assist you in reporting a crime to the police 
  • contact relatives or friends with your written consent 
  • provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion 
  • provide a list of local attorneys 
  • provide information on  victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution 
  • help you find accommodation and arrange flights home 
  • replace a stolen or lost passport 

Domestic Violence:   U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are strongly encouraged to contact the Embassy for assistance.

Tourism:   The tourism industry is unevenly regulated, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities do not commonly occur.  Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the host government or by recognized authorities in the field.  In the event of an injury, even basic medical treatment is typically available only in/near major cities.  First responders are generally unable to access areas outside of major cities and to provide urgent medical treatment.  U.S. citizens should maintain health insurance in Cuba.  If stays exceed 30 days, [CM1] U.S. citizens should purchase medical insurance when they process their visa extensions. 

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties:  You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law.  For examples, see our website on  crimes against minors abroad  and the  Department of Justice  website.

Arrest Notification:  If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately.  See our  webpage  for further information.

Cuban penalties for the following are particularly severe: 

  • Possession, use, or trafficking of illegal drugs. 
  • Suspicion of assisting Cubans to leave the country illegally. 
  • Drivers involved in accidents that result in injury or death, regardless of fault. 
  • Importing weapons or ammunition. 
  • Photographing military or police installations or personnel, or harbor, rail, or airport facilities. 
  • Crimes against minors.

The Government of Cuba does not recognize the U.S. citizenship of Cuban-born U.S. citizens who maintain residency in Cuba and may not allow U.S. consular access to Cuban-American prisoners. 

Telecommunications:  Many U.S. mobile service carriers provide roaming services in Cuba.  Your U.S. mobile phone will work in Cuba if your mobile phone is capable of roaming in Cuba and your mobile service provider has an international roaming agreement with ETECSA, Cuba's state-owned telecommunications provider.  Currently AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and T-Mobile have roaming agreements with ETECSA. Wi-Fi is often slow and unreliable. Be sure to confirm your carrier’s coverage before traveling.

SIM cards with a data plan can be purchased at Havana-José Martí International Airport (HAV) and local ETESCA telecommunications offices. To ensure family and friends can reach you in Cuba, check with your mobile provider about roaming options and cost or purchase a Cuban SIM card. See the  FCC Travel FAQs  for more information. 

Cuba-related Travel Transactions:  Only persons whose travel falls into the 12 OFAC approved travel categories or who have received a specific license from OFAC are authorized by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to travel to, from, or within Cuba.  Direct financial transactions with certain entities and sub-entities under the control of, or acting for or on behalf of, the Cuban military, intelligence, or security services are also generally prohibited. For more information see the Department of State’s ﷟ Cuba Restricted List .  Additionally, lodging, paying for lodging, or making reservations on behalf of others to lodge, at certain accommodations in Cuba are prohibited; for a full list of such accommodations, see the Cuba Prohibited Accommodations List .   For more information about licenses, visit OFAC’s  Cuba Sanctions website .   Additionally, lodging, paying for lodging, or making reservations on behalf of others to lodge, at certain accommodations in Cuba are prohibited; for a full list of such accommodations, see the Cuba Prohibited Accommodations List .   For more information about licenses, visit OFAC’s  Cuba Sanctions website . 

Licenses for Remittances:   In June 2022, OFAC published updated Cuba-related regulations .  The new regulations eliminated a cap on remittances to family members in Cuba, and authorized remittances to non-family recipients as well.  Certain Prohibited Officials of the Government of Cuba , Prohibited Members of the Cuban Communist Party , and the close relatives of these two groups, are not eligible to receive remittances.  For information on remittance authorizations, see OFAC’s  Cuba Sanctions website .

What May Be Brought Back From Cuba:  Importation of Cuban merchandise for commercial purposes is restricted, with very limited exceptions.  Certain imports of goods produced by independent Cuban entrepreneurs are authorized, as set forth on the Department of State’s  Section 515.582 List  (see 31 C.F.R 515.582).  There are no limits on the import or export of informational materials.  For more information related to imports, including merchandise entering the United States for personal use as accompanied baggage, please see the  CBP Public Notice .

Cuban law requires foreigners to obtain authorization to remove souvenir paintings and sculptures out of Cuba. Most authorized points of sale, such as galleries and art studios, should be familiar with this process and should provide the proper documentation at the time of purchase.  You can also apply for an export permit via the Cuban Fund of Cultural Assets. Travelers without a valid export permit may have their items confiscated at the port of departure. The U.S. Embassy cannot assist in these cases.  For more information, please contact the embassy of Cuba . 

Travelers may purchase alcohol and tobacco products while in Cuba for personal consumption in Cuba, but may not enter the United States with alcohol and/or tobacco products acquired in Cuba. Persons subject to United States jurisdiction may purchase or acquire Cuban-origin merchandise for personal consumption, including alcohol and tobacco products, while in a third country, but may not import such products into the United States.  For a complete description of what this general license authorizes and the restrictions that apply, see  31 CFR § 515.585(c) and (d).

Storm Season:  Tropical storms and hurricanes between May and November can produce heavy winds and rain. See our  page on disaster and crisis preparedness for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers:  See the following webpages for details:

  • Faith-Based Travel Information
  • International Religious Freedom Report  – see country reports
  • Human Rights Report  – see country reports
  • Best Practices for Volunteering Abroad

LGBTI Travelers:  There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Cuba, and on September 26, 2022 Cubans passed the referendum legalizing same sex marriage.

See   our  LGBTI Travel Information   page and section 6 of our  Human Rights report  for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance .  Individuals with mobility issues are likely to find accessibility difficult .   Few facilities or services are available, and information is limited. Most roads and sidewalks are poorly maintained.

Students:   See our  Students Abroad  page and  FBI travel tips .

Women Travelers:   See our travel tips for  Women Travelers .

Currency Restrictions:  Be advised that policies concerning the use and convertibility of U.S. dollars in Cuba are subject to change.  Obtaining U.S. dollar cash is nearly impossible through official channels.  The Cuban Central Bank prohibits certain U.S. dollar cash transactions, including conversion of U.S. dollars to Cuban pesos, the use of U.S. dollars for cash payments, including in government-run establishments such as hotels and restaurants, and the purchase of pre-paid debit cards.. U.S.-issued credit and debit cards do not work in Cuba.  Travelers should bring sufficient cash for the duration of their trip, and consider bringing multiple currencies, such as Euros.

For emergency services in Cuba, dial: 

  • 104 for an ambulance or contact the nearest  hospital  directly
  • 105 for fire 
  • 106 for police 

Ambulance services are

  • not present throughout the country or are unreliable in most areas
  • not equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment
  • not staffed with trained paramedics and often have little or no medical equipment

Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for an ambulance.

We do not pay medical bills.   Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas.  Hospitals and doctors in Cuba do not accept U.S. health insurance.  Most hospitals require payment up front before services are rendered.

Medical Insurance:   Ensure your airline ticket includes health insurance.  Cuba requires all U.S. airlines departing the United States to pay for health insurance for each passenger.  The health insurance from airlines is valid for 30 days upon your arrival in Cuba.  If you are planning to stay in Cuba for more than 30 days, you will need to extend your coverage before you can extend your visa.   It is important to keep a record of your arrival into Cuba, such as your airline ticket, so that the Asistur agency can coordinate with the hospital on payment MEDEVAC flights from Cuba are difficult to arrange, with costs starting at $15,000 U.S. dollars.  Visit the  U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Ensure you have all medicine you require for your time in Cuba.  Medicine (prescription and over the counter) is not readily available in Cuba.  Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription.  Check with the embassy of Cuba to ensure the medication is legal in Cuba.  Note: This site is in Spanish only.

Diarrheal illness is common among travelers, even in luxury accommodations.  Travelers should wash their hands, drink bottled water, and avoid street and undercooked food.

The following diseases are prevalent: 

  • Dengue Fever 
  • Hepatitis-A 
  • Traveler’s diarrhea 
  • Chikungunya 
  • Typhoid 
  • Rabies 
  • Zika Virus 

Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Resources for Travelers regarding specific medical issues in  Cuba . 

Vaccinations:  Be up to date on all  vaccinations  recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

  • World Health Organization
  • U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC)

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals  here .  We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Pharmaceuticals:  Even the most common over the counter medications are unavailable in Cuba. Other medication, medical equipment or supplies are also unavailable on the island.  If you are able to find medicine, exercise caution when purchasing medication overseas. Counterfeit medication may prove to be ineffective, the wrong strength, or contain dangerous ingredients.  Medication should be purchased in consultation with a medical professional and from reputable establishments.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States.  Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States.  Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States.  Please visit the  U.S. Customs and Border Protection  and the  Food and Drug Administration  websites for more information.

Water Quality:  Tap water is not potable.  Bottled water is often unavailable for purchase and you should be aware that some restaurants and hotels serve tap water unless bottled water is specifically requested. Be aware that ice for drinks may be made using tap water.

General Health Issues

  • There are severe shortages of food, potable water, medicine, medical supplies, etc.  throughout Cuba.
  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about  Resources for Travelers  regarding specific issues in Cuba.

Air Quality:  Air pollution is a problem in several major cities in Cuba. Consider the impact seasonal smog and heavy particulate pollution may have on you and consult your doctor before traveling if necessary. Visit  AirNow Department of State  for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety:  Road accidents, many involving pedestrians and bicyclists, are Cuba’s leading cause of death.  Cuban authorities may prohibit drivers from leaving the country until claims associated with an accident are settled.  Drivers found responsible for accidents resulting in serious injury or death may receive long prison sentences.  U.S. citizen drivers are often found at fault for accidents they are involved in. 

Drive with extreme care.  Major streets are generally well-maintained, but secondary streets are not.  Major potholes and obstacles are common on all roads.  After heavy rains in 2022, several bridges collapsed.  Damaged bridges may not be well marked.  

Outside of major cities, avoid driving at night as many roads are unlit. Emergency lights or signals are rare, making it virtually impossible to detect hazards after dark.  Street signage is insufficient and confusing. Many Cuban cars are old, in poor condition, and lack reliable safety equipment.  Heed caution throughout the country as there are rolling blackouts which may leave streets dark and without traffic lights, even in major cities.

The principal Cuban east-west highway is in good condition but extends only part of the way from Havana to the eastern end of the island.  Hazards – including unfenced livestock and farm vehicles – are common. 

When traveling by road, you should carry a printed map of the area, as electronic (smartphone) maps frequently fail due to connectivity issues.

Traffic Laws:   Speed limits are sometimes posted and passengers in automobiles are required to wear seatbelts, if available.  All motorcyclists are required to wear helmets.  Traffic from major roads generally does not stop when entering roundabouts.  Use care at intersections: stop signs are often hard to see. 

Public Transportation: 

Buses designated for tourist travel, both between and within cities, generally meet international standards.  

The public bus and rail system in Cuba is under-resourced and in poor condition.  Public buses used by Cubans, known as "guaguas," are crowded, unreliable, and are sometimes preyed upon by petty criminals. There is a heightened threat of pickpocketing on crowded buses and trains. Embassy personnel are advised not to use public transportation.

Avoid using informal taxis or hailing private vehicles for rides as they are unregulated, the vehicles are often in disrepair, and usually do not have normal vehicle safety equipment such as seat belts and air bags.  “Cocos,” smaller, yellow ball-shaped “tuk-tuk” style vehicles, are not safe, and the Embassy advises its personnel not to use them.

Rental car agencies provide roadside assistance to their clients as a condition of rental contracts.  Travelers should not permit unauthorized persons to drive their rental vehicles.

See our  Road Safety page  for more information.

Aviation Safety Oversight:   As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Cuba, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Cuba’s Civil Aviation Authority under its International Aviation Safety Assessment program (IASA) for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the  FAA’s IASA website.  The U.S. Embassy in Havana prohibits U.S. government personnel from using any commercial airline for domestic flights within Cuba due to safety concerns.  The Embassy does not authorize government personnel to travel via Cubana Airlines.

Maritime Travel:  Mariners planning travel to Cuba should also check for  U.S. maritime advisories and alerts .  Information may also be posted to the  U.S. Coast Guard homeport website , and the  NGA broadcast warn ings .

For additional travel information

  • Enroll in the  Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)  to receive security messages and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Call us in Washington, D.C. at 1-888-407-4747 (toll-free in the United States and Canada) or 1-202-501-4444 (from all other countries) from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).
  • See the  State Department’s travel website  for the  Worldwide Caution  and  Travel Advisories .
  • Follow us on  Twitter  and  Facebook .
  • See  traveling safely abroad  for useful travel tips.

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Cuba .  For additional IPCA-related information, please see  the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA)  report.

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Travel to Cuba

U.s. to cuba travel policy.

Flying to Cuba from or through the U.S. for tourism is not allowed. There are 13 permitted reasons for travel:

  • Family visits
  • Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments and certain intergovernmental organizations
  • Journalistic activities
  • Professional research or professional meetings
  • Educational academic activities
  • People-to-people exchanges (for travel related transactions purchased prior to June 5, 2019)
  • Religious activities
  • Public performance, clinics, workshops, athletic or other competitions and exhibitions
  • Support for the Cuban people
  • Humanitarian projects
  • Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes
  • Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or informational materials
  • Travel related to certain authorized export transactions

Federal regulations on travel to Cuba Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

If you aren't traveling for one of the 13 reasons, there are 2 other ways to enter Cuba:

  • With a license issued by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)
  • As a Cuban National returning home

Apply for an OFAC license Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

If you don't qualify for one of the 13 permitted reasons, have an OFAC license or identify as a Cuban national returning home, you will not be permitted to travel to Cuba.

Additional travel requirements

Everyone entering Cuba must have a visa and health insurance with coverage in the area. For insurance, a $25 fee is added to your ticket price.

Special visa requirements apply to Cuban-born travelers, regardless of citizenship.

Preparing for travel

What to bring.

  • Valid passport
  • Valid visa, travel card or Cuban passport

You can buy a travel card online or at Miami (MIA) before departure.

Buy travel card Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines

Few U.S.-issued cards are accepted in Cuba and service isn't guaranteed. Contact your bank before traveling.

Online check-in for flights to Cuba is unavailable. You must check in at the airport to provide reason for travel – allow up to 3 hours to complete the process. If you're flying from Miami (MIA), look for the 'Cuba Ready' booth by Checkpoints 1 and 2 to check your documents and get your boarding pass stamp.

Changes to bag limitations for checked bags have been updated as of March 14, 2023. Bag fees may apply for checked bags.

  • Checked bag policy
  • Bag limitations


When you get to the gate at your connecting airport, look for the 'Cuba Ready' booth to check your documents and get your boarding pass stamp.


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Cuba Visas: Cuba Tourist Visa Guide, From A Pro [2024]

Planning on traveling to Cuba? It’s important to know that almost every visitor to Cuba needs a Cuba tourist visa or a Cuban tourist card , which must be obtained prior to arrival on the island. But how to get it?

As a long-time Cuba visitor turned expat, I’ve navigated the Cuban visa process many times – certainly, more times than I would have liked to! Read on for all the details on the easiest (and cheapest) ways to get your Cuban tourist visa – plus the travelers who need an even more specialized visa to Cuba.

cuba visa

This post contains affiliate links that may reward me monetarily or otherwise when you use them to make qualifying purchases – at no cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. For more information, please read our  disclosure policy .

Almost every traveler to Cuba will need to have a Cuban tourist visa when they arrive in the country. Also known as a Cuban tourist card or Cuba travel card , the Cuba tourist visa is something that every non-Cuban traveler will need to present this tourist visa at immigration when entering and exiting Cuba. This is one of the most crucial entry requirements for Cuba .

Only Cuban citizens and travelers with other types of Cuban visas (like student visas, business visas, or permanent residency) will not need to present a Cuban tourist visa upon arrival in Cuba.

Get Your Cuba Visa Online: EasyTouristVisa

Cuba Entry Requirements

A tourist visa to Cuba is one of the entry requirements for visiting the country, but only a very limited few will need to apply for a Cuban visa with their Cuban embassy in advance . Most travelers simply need to purchase their Cuban tourist visas before arriving in Cuba.

Those who must apply for a tourist visa in advance are from a select few Asian and African countries – that list can be found here . Check out this account from an Indian blogger about special requirements and procedures for the Cuba visa requirements for Indian citizens .

Most travelers to Cuba simply need to book their arline tickets to Cuba and purchase their Cuban tourist visa before arriving in Cuba, whether from an online visa service (we have used and recommend EasyTouristVisa !) or directly from their airline.

Guide to Entry Requirements to Cuba

  • Entry Requirements to Cuba: The Ultimate Guide
  • Cuba’s D’Viajeros Travel Form: A Guide for Travelers
  • Travel Insurance to Cuba: Policy Requirements for Entry

entry requirements for cuba

Cuban Tourist Visa

Cuban tourist visas are required for most travelers to Cuba who are not Cuban citizens or don’t have another visa status in Cuba (a student visa, permanent residency, etc). Thankfully, visas to travel to Cuba are very easy to get . Most travelers to Cuba get their Cuba visa before they travel, either online through the EasyTouristVisa website or from their airline, if possible.

Since there is no option for a Cuba visa on arrival, you’ll have to get your visa before you land in the country.

Types of Cuban Tourist Visas

Pink tourist visas.

Pink tourist visas are required for travelers arriving in Cuba on a flight from the United States (regardless of whether the traveler is a citizen of the United States or another country). Pink tourist visas generally cost between $50-110 .

Green Tourist Visas

Green tourist visas are for travelers arriving in Cuba from any country other than the United States. These green tourist visas generally cost between $20-50.

How Much Does a Cuba Tourist Visa Cost

The Cuban tourist visa does not have one fixed price – it varies depending on how and where you get it. The cost of a Cuban tourist visa also varies based on which type of tourist visa for Cuban you’ll need – either a pink tourist visa or a green tourist visa.

If ordering your visa online from EasyTouristVisa , make sure you select the correct visa type – either pink or green – depending on where you’ll be traveling from. Prompts on the website will guide you to make the right choice if you have any questions.

If you will be purchasing your tourist visa from your airline prior to departure, they’ll be prepared to offer you the visa color you’ll need.

Cuba Travel 101

  • Currency in Cuba: A Local’s Guide for Travelers
  • How to Get Wifi in Cuba [Updated!]
  • Is Cuba Safe? Updated Cuba Safety Guide
  • Ultimate Cuba Travel Guide – A Local’s Advice for Travelers

havana cuba

How To Get a Cuban Visa

There are several ways to get the Cuban tourist visa card required before you arrive in Cuba – some more challenging than others. You can get yours one of three ways:

  • Get your Cuba visa online from the EasyTouristVisa website
  • Get your Cuban visa from your airline
  • Get a Cuban embassy visa

Cuba Visa Online

Cuba does not currently offer an online “e-visa” version of the tourist visa. You must have an official, physical tourist visa that you will present in immigration when arriving in the country.

However, you can obtain the Cuban visa online before your trip and have it sent to your home before you travel. I recommend looking into EasyTouristVisa as the most convenient way to get your tourist visa!

Cuba Visa from Airlines

Another way to get a Cuban tourist visa card is directly from the airline that will take you to Cuba. Each airline is responsible for making sure its travelers have a tourist visa before boarding a flight to Cuba, so they’ll generally offer the Cuban tourist visa for sale.

Most airlines offer these tourist visas for sale through their website after booking, and others may offer them prior to boarding the plane.

  • American Airlines: The Cuban tourist visa from American Airlines costs $85 if purchased online through the airline prior to your flight or $125 if purchased at the airport during check-in or at your departure gate.
  • Delta : The Cuban tourist visa from Delta costs $85 and can be purchased during check-in or at your departure gate.
  • Copa Airlines: The Cuban tourist visa from Copa Airlines costs either $20 or $30, depending on your departure airport.
  • Air Canada: Air Canada is an airline that includes the cost of the Cuba visa in the price of its ticket. Tourist cards are distributed to passengers in-flight, along with the customs and immigration forms you’ll need when you arrive in Cuba.

Cuba Visa From A Cuban Embassy

A final way to secure your Cuban tourist visa prior to traveling to Cuba is through your nearest Cuban embassy. Visit the website of the Cuban embassy in your country of origin to determine how to apply for a Cuban tourist visa from your embassy.

Generally, I don’t recommend this method of obtaining a Cuban tourist visa. This tends to be a more challenging and time-consuming way to go about what is a straightforward and simple process with EasyTouristVisa or through your airline.

Remember, it’s only required that you pre-apply for a Cuban tourist visa through an embassy if you’re from a small list of Asian and African countries . If you aren’t from one of these countries you’re free to purchase your tourist visa card online or through your airline.

What to Pack for Cuba

Check out our  Ultimate Cuba Packing List   to help you pack for your trip – we’re sharing exactly what to bring to Cuba and what we never travel without.

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Cuba Visas – FAQ

Do americans need a visa for cuba.

Yes! Citizens of the United States need a tourist visa for Cuba. The government of Cuba requires that ALL non-Cuban visitors to the island have a tourist visa – also known as a tourist card – before arriving. There is no special Cuba visa for Americans; everyone needs the same tourist visa!

Special regulations restricting the travel of citizens of the United States to Cuba come from the government of the United States, not the government of Cuba. In the eyes of the government of Cuba, travelers from the United States are the same as travelers from any other country.

Guides for American Travelers to Cuba

  • Can Americans Travel to Cuba?
  • Support for the Cuban People Travel: Legal Cuba Travel for Americans
  • Best Activ ities for Legal Travel to Cuba

What is the Difference Between a Tourist Visa and a Tourist Card?

What is the difference between the Cuban tourist visa and the Cuban tourist card? There is none – many people refer to the Cuban tourist visa as the Cuban tourist card , or even the Cuban travel card. Confusingly, these different phrases all refer to the same document.

The tourist visa to Cuba and the “Cuban tourist card” are the same thing – no need to worry about the use of multiple different names to describe the same document. One will suffice.

Read More: What is A Tourist Card for Cuba?

Carley Rojas Avila

Carley Rojas Avila

Carley Rojas Avila is a bilingual travel writer, editor, content marketer, and the founder of the digital travel publications Home to Havana and Explorers Away. She is a serial expat and traveler, having visited 40+ countries and counting. Carley has written for publications like Travel + Leisure, MSN, Associated Press, Weather Channel, Wealth of Geeks, and more. Find her front row at a Bad Bunny concert, befriending street cats, and taste-testing every pizza in Havana.

cuba travel visa


You need a valid passport with at least 6 months validity remaining to enter Cuba. Most countries also require a visa to enter Cuba.  Visas for Cuba are required by all nationals referred to in the chart below. 

The required tourist visa, known as a tourist card, allows the holder to stay in the Cuba for 90 days and is valid for a single entry. You must provide proof of confirmed return flight and booked accommodation. This tourist card can be renewed for a further 90 days in Cuba. 

Nationals not referred to in the chart are advised to contact the Cuban Embassy to check visa requirements.

Nationals of  (1)  the USA are subject to the Cuban assets control regulations enforced by the  Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) .   For more information please refer to Travel to Cuba for US citizens

The tourist card is valid for one entry of 90 days and can be extended in Cuba for a further 90 days.

How to Obtain a Visa

Cuban consulate (or consular section at embassy):.

in person or by post. You can obtain application forms for tourist visa cards from the Consulate/ Embassy.   They then need to be submitted by post. Allow up to four weeks for visa processing.


So long as you are a UK or European Passport holder resident in the UK, you can buy one from our online SHOP and your tourist card will be sent to an address in the UK. Please allow at least 2 weeks before your departure date. 

The cost of a Tourist Card is £25 (includes postage within the UK)


All visitors to Cuba are required to prove they have travel insurance covering medical expenses from approved foreign companies during their period of stay, or they will have to buy it from Cuban vendors on arrival in the country. US travel insurance policies are not accepted.


Filling D’Viajeros form is mandatory for each passenger before travelling to Cuba. The form must be completed and shown at the airport before and after travelling to the island and requires passengers to input data such as their passport information, travel plans, and customs declarations. Read our step-by-step guide to filling D’Viajeros form.


Parents travelling with children may be required to show proof of parental rights or guardianship.


Visitors entering Cuba on a tourist visa are prohibited from undertaking business or journalism activities.


British embassy in cuba.

Telephone: (7) 214 2200. Website: Opening times: Mon-Fri 08:00-15:30. 


Telephone: (020) 7240 2488 / (020) 7379 9582. Website: Opening times: Mon-Fri 09:30-12:30.


Telephone: (020) 7240 6655. Website: Opening times: Mon-Fri 09:00-17:00.

cuba travel visa

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How to Travel to Cuba If You Are an American

cuba travel visa

 Kriangkrai Thitimakorn / Getty Images 

Travel to Cuba for American citizens has been a back-and-forth battle over the past few decades, and as of June 2019, tighter restrictions have been placed on travelers and tourists hoping to visit this Caribbean island.

Travelers must now declare themselves as making a trip that falls under one of 12 categories of travel. This means that tourists may no longer travel to Cuba in the "people to people" category, and those that do make it to Cuba are no longer allowed to support businesses that help fund the Cuban military. Additionally, the Trump administration further banned cruise ships and ferries from transporting Americans to the islands in June of 2019.

In order to book a flight to Cuba or lodging in the country now, you must now declare which category of travel you'll be making first, and as Americans still cannot simply book a flight and head to Cuba, most U.S. citizens will have to go through a process to make it to this country—unless they are part of a protected group still permitted to travel there.

New Legislation and Getting a Visa: Who Can Travel

Legal individual travel has always required that citizens fall under one of the 12 categories of permitted travel to Cuba, a rule already in place before Trump's November 2017 edict. Now, however, the requirement is legally binding and you'll need to document your activities to prove you were there for legitimate reasons (other than tourism).

According to the  U.S. Embassy in Cuba's official website , trips may be completed for: 

  • Family visits
  • Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations
  • Journalistic activity
  • Professional research and professional meetings
  • Educational activities
  • Religious activities
  • Public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions
  • Support for the Cuban people
  • Humanitarian projects
  • Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes
  • Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or information materials
  • Certain export transactions that may be considered for authorization under existing regulations and guidelines

In order to get a travel visa to Cuba, neither the U.S. Embassy in Havana nor the U.S Department of State in Washington, D.C. process applications, so you'll instead need to apply through the Cuban Embassy in D.C.

Booking Hotels and Logistics of Visiting Cuba

Because of the Trump administration's policy banning American support of military-funded establishments, paired with hurricanes that ravaged the island in 2017, booking a hotel room can be a challenge.

According to officials from the Trump administration, these new restrictions in Cuba were not meant to stop tourism of the country but to "direct money and economic activity away from the Cuban military and security services" and toward businesses owned by Cuban citizens.

Essentially, these new laws hope to encourage visitors to eat at local restaurants, stay in local hotels (or private homes), and buy from local businesses—just make sure you never go to any restricted businesses or you could be fined or arrested upon return to the United States.

While Trump has discouraged travel to Cuba with these new restrictions, it's still possible to go and enjoy the rich culture of this island. However, since relations between the United States and Cuba are suffering under the Trump administration, be well prepared before you go. Be sure to bring enough cash for your entire trip as accessing American funds in Cuba—as well as exchanging them to the Cuban peso—is rather difficult.

Going Solo to Cuba

Although the 2017 restrictions still allowed cruise ships and authorized tour groups to arrange hotels, transportation, meals, and an itinerary that complies with federal regulations, the 2019 edict prohibited these from arranging travel for tourists seeking to visit Cuba as tourists.

Going solo now, you'll need a passport and a reason for being there that doesn't involve tourism. You'll need to make your own hotel and transport arrangements, of course, and a working knowledge of Spanish can help, too. However, the island nation already has experience handling international tourists, so there is more than minimal tourist help already in place.

The changes in Cuba policy don't apply to travelers from elsewhere in the world, and Cuba is among the most popular Caribbean destinations for travelers from Canada and Europe. A number of international hotel companies, such as  Riu ,  Iberostar , and  Melia , have built large resorts in Cuban destinations like Varadero that meet the expectations of savvy global travelers. More than two million tourists now visit Cuba annually.

Traveling by U.S. Commercial Airlines

Although some top U.S. airlines bid over the right to fly to Cuba in 2016, the 2017 restrictions have all but eliminated commercial airline travel between the two countries. Charter flights that largely originate in Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and Tampa still remain travelers' best option for getting to Cuba by air from the U.S. It is highly unlikely that Cuba's airlines will begin offering flights to the U.S. anytime soon, as they would have to overcome significant regulatory hurdles in order to do so. Beginning in late 2019, U.S.-based carriers will only fly in and out of Havana. To visit other Cuban cities, you will have to travel by land within the country.

Flying From Canada, Cancun, Grand Cayman, and Jamaica

If you don't want to wait for U.S. airlines to start flying to Cuba, or you want to combine a visit to Cuba with a trip to a different Caribbean island, you have options, and not just to Havana but also a wide range of  Cuban destinations .

Currently, Air Canada flies between Toronto and Havana and Varadero, Cuba, while Cubana—Cuba's national airline—has service between Toronto and Montreal and Havana, Varadero, Cienfuegos, Santa Clara, and Holguín, and COPA Airlines also has daily Toronto-Havana flights.

Cancun  has long been the gateway of choice for Americans looking to visit Cuba without attracting the attention of U.S. Customs officials, and even though restrictions have tightened, you can still fly Cubana from Cancun to Havana. Cayman Airways also has flights to Havana from  Grand Cayman  and  Jamaica .

Using the Havana Embassy

The  U.S. Embassy in Havana  reopened in August 2015, as full diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States have been restored. Although the relationship is now strained thanks to the Trump administration, this embassy will still help American citizens in Cuba in a variety of different ways.

Services offered at the U.S. Embassy in Havana include processing applications for new U.S. passports, renewing expired passports, or replacing stolen passports as well as registering U.S. citizens living in, traveling to, or born in Cuba.

The U.S. Embassy also provides federal income tax forms, services to notarize documents to be used in the United States, and limited assistance to U.S. citizen prisoners in Cuba as well as assistance in the shipment of remains of deceased U.S. citizens back to the United States or coordinating medical evacuations for U.S. citizens.

In an emergency situation, the U.S. Embassy will also assist in wiring money to citizens, but don't count on this option to help you if you simply run out of funds while visiting Cuba.

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Yes, Americans Can Still Travel to Cuba. Here’s How

Is it legal for u.s. citizens to travel to cuba what types of travel can they take and what are cuba tourist cards here’s what you need to know about visiting cuba..

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A classic 1950s car outside row of two- and three-story pastel-colored buildings

Havana, Cuba’s capital city, is known for its vintage cars and historic architecture.

Courtesy of Spencer Everett/Unsplash

Cuba is a beautiful Caribbean island with a complex history and rich culture. But for decades, it’s been just beyond the reach of many Americans. In addition to several difficult years involving devastating hurricanes, pandemic-era travel restrictions, ever-changing U.S. State Department travel advisories, and frequently updated trade and tourism regulations , it’s not surprising that many Americans may be confused about whether and how U.S. travelers can legally visit Cuba .

As of early 2024, the short answer is: Yes, you can travel to Cuba as a U.S. citizen. There are, however, some hoops you’ll need to jump through, because (technically speaking) travel to Cuba for pure vacationing isn’t allowed. For U.S. citizens interested in planning a trip to Cuba, here’s what you need to know before you go.

Can you travel to Cuba?

The relationship between the United States and Cuba has been tumultuous, to say the least. Following the Cuban Revolution during the 1950s and the subsequent rise of Fidel Castro’s regime, diplomatic ties between the two nations deteriorated rapidly. In 1960, the United States imposed a trade embargo on Cuba, effectively severing most economic and political connections.

In the time since, travel between the two countries has been heavily restricted by the U.S. government, which has implemented various policies to discourage or prohibit its citizens from visiting Cuba. Making matters more complex, those policies often changed with each presidential administration. The island nation was more accessible during the Carter, Clinton, and Obama years and more closed off during the G.W. Bush and Trump years.

In 2014, it became significantly easier for Americans to visit Cuba after President Obama announced a series of measures aimed at normalizing diplomatic ties and loosening travel restrictions to allow Americans to visit for certain purposes (more on that later). Additionally, in 2016, commercial flights between the United States and Cuba resumed for the first time in more than half a century.

However, the Trump administration made it significantly harder to visit Cuba. During his time in office, President Trump enacted more than 200 measures against Cuba , which included limiting what Cuban airports flights from the U.S. could fly into, banning cruises from stopping in Cuba, and eliminating the most common visa category under which U.S. citizens planned legal visits to Cuba (known as “people-to-people” travel).

Then in May 2022, President Biden’s administration announced it would undo many of the Cuba-related restrictions enacted under Trump and would work on expanding authorized travel. Under the new order, regular passenger and charter airplanes are again allowed to fly to any Cuban airport (and airlines announced new flight paths ). And officials said that the “people-to-people” category of travel, under which many tours and organized travel companies bring U.S. travelers to Cuba, will ultimately return, though there is no timeline on when that will happen.

Several musicians on the street in Cuba in front of a turquoise building

Cuba’s music scene is also a big draw.

Photo by Shutterstock

How to travel to Cuba as an American citizen

U.S. law states that those who want to go to Cuba need to qualify for a “general license” based on one of 12 approved categories.

The 12 categories currently authorized by U.S. government, for travel to Cuba are:

  • Family visits
  • Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations
  • Journalistic activity
  • Professional research and professional meetings
  • Educational activities
  • Religious activities
  • Public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions
  • Support for the Cuban people
  • Humanitarian projects
  • Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes
  • Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or informational materials
  • Certain authorized export transactions

Licenses are self-qualifying, meaning that when you purchase your airline ticket, you’ll be asked to state your category in a signed affidavit before checkout.

When former President Obama first eased travel restrictions to Cuba , the move allowed leisure travelers to pursue self-led trips under the “people-to-people” educational activities category. Today, the “support for the Cuban people” category is the most popular because it’s the broadest.

What the “support for the Cuban people” license entails

To adhere to the requirements for independent travel under “support for the Cuban people,” travelers must first declare the category (when prompted) while booking flights and lodging. As part of the license, travelers are also expected to prepare an itinerary outlining how their trip will fulfill the category’s terms and contribute to Cuba’s local economy. (This itinerary could be—but isn’t always—requested on arrival to the country.)

An appropriate “support for the Cuban people” itinerary could including staying in casa particulares (locally run guesthouses), visiting Cuban-owned businesses, going on tours (like classic car rides or architecture walking tours) run by Cubans, visiting independent museums and galleries, partaking in cultural dance and music classes, and eating at locally owned restaurants and markets. (For specific recommendations and local resources, check out AFAR’s Cuba Travel Guide .)

Travelers can visit independently under that category, though it’s important you keep a record of your itinerary and your receipts: The U.S. government can ask for them up to five years after the trip.

Can you still travel to Cuba with organized tour operators?

Even though the Trump administration’s tightened restrictions on travel to Cuba prohibited organized “people-to-people” tours entirely, many tour companies have switched their approach to adhere to the “support for the Cuban people” license, according to Tom Popper, president of U.S.-based tour operator InsightCuba . Other tour providers that offer “people-to-people” trips, such as GeoEx Adventure Travel , Flash Pack , Intrepid Travel, and G Adventures, have similarly transitioned their program itineraries in order to offer legal trips to Cuba that comply with the regulations.

Challenges and considerations for travel to Cuba

Despite the easing of restrictions, traveling to Cuba as an American still presents some challenges. For example, there are limited banking services available to U.S. visitors, and American credit and debit cards are not typically accepted (as noted on the website for the U.S. embassy in Cuba ), so it’s important to bring plenty of cash. Similarly, internet access in Cuba is limited —expect connections to be patchy .

How to get a Cuba Tourist Card

Cuban Tourist Card with blue pen

The terms Cuba Tourist Cards and Cuban visas are sometimes used interchangeably.

Courtesy of Easy Tourist Card

Regardless of the license under which you travel to Cuba, you’ll still need to organize a few important documents before you go.

The Cuban government requires that all travelers entering the country provide a valid passport and proof of travel insurance that covers medical emergencies and evacuation by air. In addition, all U.S. travelers—adults, children, and infants—must purchase a Cuba Tourist Card , which grants visitors a maximum stay of 30 days on the island. Tourist Cards are valid for 180 days after purchase, which means you will need to travel within six months of obtaining the document. Note that the terms Cuba Tourist Card and Cuban visa are sometimes used interchangeably; they’re the same thing.

There are several ways to buy a Cuba Tourist Card: Many U.S. airlines with direct service to Havana—among them United Airlines , JetBlue , American Airlines , Delta , and Southwest —offer Tourist Cards either online or at the gate; prices and purchase locations vary among carriers, so it’s important to check in advance.

Websites like Easy Tourist Card allow travelers to apply for and purchase Tourist Cards online with two-day international shipping. Those who plan to fly to Havana directly from the United States will need to purchase a pink Tourist Card at a rate of $100, while those departing from non-U.S. airports can purchase a green Tourist Card for $37, even with a U.S. passport.

“U.S. travelers should note that travel to Cuba has been regulated since 1963 and has changed under each presidential administration since that time,” states Popper of InsightCuba. “Cuba travel has always been a hot political topic, and you never know when the rules are going to change. I always tell people to go now—while you can.”

This article was originally published in 2018. It was most recently updated on March 21, 2024, to include current information.

Sit back and enjoy views like the Gastein Valley aboard the ÖBB railway.

Tour Republic

Cuba Tourist Card: 5 Ways to Get the Cuba Tourist Visa in 2023

If you go to Cuba for tourism, you almost certainly need a Cuba Tourist Card or Tourist Visa. But there is the green and the pink Tourist Visa, which one should you get? What if you are flying from the US?

This article will cover everything you need to know about the Cuba Tourist Visa, including how to apply for the right one, depending on where you are flying from.

What Is the Cuba Tourist Card?

The Cuba Tourist Card (“ Tarjeta del Turista “), also known as Cuba Tourist Visa, temporarily permits foreign nationals to visit Cuba for leisure.

If you travel to Cuba for non-tourism purposes, you will need a regular visa .

Who Needs a Cuba Tourist Card?

Almost everyone traveling to Cuba for tourism needs a Cuba Tourist Card (“Tarjeta del Turista”). The only countries exempt from the Cuba Tourist Card are Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belarus, Benin, Bosnia, China, Dominica, Grenada, Macedonia, Malaysia, Montenegro, Mongolia, Namibia, Saint Kitts, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, Serbia, Singapore, and Vietnam.

How Long Can You Stay in Cuba With the Tourist Card?

The Cuba Tourist Card grants visitors a maximum stay of 90 days in Cuba. However, travelers can extend it to 180 days while on the island.

How Long Is the Cuba Tourist Card Valid For?

The Cuba Tourist Card does not expire before entering the country. Therefore, you can travel at any time after getting the visa.

Is the Cuba Tourist Card a Single-Entry or Multiple-Entry Visa?

The Cuba Tourist Card is a single-entry visa.

Pink or Green: What Cuba Tourist Visa Should You Get?

An interesting fact about Cuba is that Cuban Tourist Cards come in pink and green colors. The color depends on the country of origin you’re traveling from.

If you travel directly from the U.S. to Cuba, you’ll need a pink Cuban Tourist Card.

Travelers who fly to the island from a non-U.S. airport must bring a green Cuba Tourist Card. For example, if you are a Canadian flying to Cuba from the Toronto Pearson Airport, you need the green version.

Pink Cuban Tourist Card

Knowing the distinction between the two colors is easy, but knowing which one to buy can be trickier, especially if taking a multi-leg flight.

Before buying your card online, look at your itinerary and check the last airport you depart from: this airport determines which color card you need.

FYI: pink cards are pricier than green cards because of the rocky relationship between the U.S. and Cuba.

What Cuba Tourist Card Do You Need if Traveling From the U.S.?

If you fly to Cuba from the US, you’ll need a pink version of the Cuba Tourist Visa.

If you fly from a third country, you’ll need the green Tourist Card, even if you’re an American citizen!

Remember that the U.S. government has a few other stipulations for American travelers. For example, before you head to Cuba, you must declare a travel category, like Support for the Cuban People . It sounds tricky, but we promise that our article for Americans traveling to Cuba makes it easy.

What Are the Cuba Tourist Card Requirements?

The application process is easy, and you only need to fulfill a few requirements . Here’s what you need to get a Cuba Tourist Visa:

  • Valid passport
  • Application form
  • Travel itinerary
  • Travel health insurance (we recommend Insubuy for comprehensive travel medical insurance for Cuba )

If you only have the first two, you can still get started with your application. You’ll only need your itinerary and travel insurance when you arrive at the airport in Cuba.

How Much Does the Cuba Tourist Card Cost?

You can expect the Cuba Tourist Card to cost anywhere between $35 and $100 U.S. dollars, depending on where you get it. While the card’s price isn’t high, you may have to pay additional airline or shipping fees if you order it online.

Look at the section below for a more detailed price breakdown for each option.

How to Get a Cuba Tourist Card?

You can get the Cuba Tourist Visa online, from your airline or travel agency, or at the Cuban embassy in your country. There’s no right or wrong way, but you’ll probably find that some methods are easier or less expensive than others.

Here are the four ways to get a Cuba Tourist Card for your upcoming trip:

1. Buy it Online

This is by far the easiest way to get your Cuba Tourist Card. Sites like EasyTouristCard make ordering quick and convenient from the comfort of your home.

You can purchase it well ahead of time and have it mailed to your address within a week, so you don’t need to worry about picking it up at the last minute.

You’ll also be able to skip the Tourist Card line at the airport, so you have to stand in one less line before arriving in sunny Cuba.

2. Buy it From Your Airline

Some airlines allow you to purchase the Cuba Tourist Card directly from them. Every airline handles the Tourist Card process differently, so we recommend checking in with your airline of choice to ensure you’re on the same page.

Some airlines have you pick up your tourist card at the gate before boarding your flight, while others hand out the card mid-flight. If you need to pick up your card in person, pad in some extra time if there’s a line.

The cost of the Cuba Tourist Visa is usually bundled in with your flight, but the price itself (shown in USD) varies from airline to airline.

  • American Airlines : $85.00 ($50.00 visa price + $35.00 processing fee). Buy your card online or at the gate in Miami before departure.
  • Southwest : $75.00 ($50.00 visa price: + $25.00 processing fee). Order online or via phone and pick up your card at the Ft. Lauderdale (FLL) or Tampa (TPA) airport at the check-in or departure gate.
  • Delta : $50.00. Purchased at the gate.
  • Jet Blue : $50.00. Purchased from JetBlue at gateway airport.
  • Air Canada : Passed out during the flight.
  • United Airlines : $75.00 ($50 Visa price + $25 processing fee).

3. Buy it From Your Country’s Cuban Embassy or Consulate

This is the hardest way to buy the Cuba Tourist Visa since you have to go in person with the necessary paperwork . Price varies depending on the embassy, but you can expect to pay between $35 and $75 for the card.

4. Buy it from your travel agency

Traveling through an agency or tour company can be extremely helpful since they’ll take care of most of the details for you – as long as they’re reputable. Most travel agencies will bundle the Cuba Tourist Card into their existing Cuba travel packages.

5. Get it upon arrival

Technically, you can get the Cuba Tourist Visa at Havana Airport , or any other Cuban airport, for about $25 (you can’t purchase it in Cuban currency or U.S. dollars). However, you can’t even board your flight in most cases if you don’t have a Cuba Tourist Card.

If somehow you manage to get to Cuba without a card, prepare yourself for the experience of navigating the Cuban infrastructure, which could entail long lines, empty booths, and slow service. This will be a true test of your patience since you won’t be able to leave the airport until your Tourist Card is in hand.

Not Too Complicated, Right?

We hope this guide to getting the Cuba Tourist Card makes the process as smooth and stress-free as possible. Bottom line: if your airline or travel agency didn’t include the Tourist Visa, it’s better to purchase it online. If you are flying from the US, get the pink one; if not, apply for the green one.

Have you recently traveled to Cuba with a Tourist Visa? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!

Essential Travel Logistics For Cuba

Cuban Tourist Card –  If your  Cuban Tourist Card (a.k.a Cuban Tourist Visa)  isn’t bundled into your airline ticket or travel package, buy it only through  EasyTouristCard . 

Travel Health Insurance –  Travel medical insurance is an entry requirement for Cuba, so you can’t skip it. Travelers can get travel health insurance for Cuba via  Insubuy . Travel protection benefits such as trip interruption and cancellation, baggage delay insurance, etc., are not required.

Essential Items to Pack –  Bring the essential travel necessities that you may not be able to get in Cuba:

  • First aid kit
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Water bottle with filter
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Pin adapter (for Europeans)
  • Travel guide
  • Spanish-English phrasebook
  • Suggested Reading: The Cubans: Ordinary Lives in Extraordinary Times

Read our complete packing list for Cuba .

Find Accommodations –  Find hotels or casas particulares (private accommodations) on Skyscanner , which lists thousands of accommodations available in Cuba.

Book Your Flight –  Book cheap flights to Cuba on Skyscanner , our favorite flight search engine to find deals on flights to Cuba.

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About the Author

Tour republic.

Tour Republic is a marketplace where you can discover, book, and review the very best experiences Cuba has to offer. We are a team of tourism professionals and journalists who have partnered with Cuban entrepreneurs to provide travel experiences that can transform your trip into a life-changing adventure. We also share our profound love for Cuba through in-depth travel guides, myth-busting articles, and captivating narratives. Whether you want to explore Cuba's wonders or understand its intricacies, our blog posts are your gateway to the heart of this extraordinary country.

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I want to go to the country

I am burundi citizen residing in saudi arabia, am willing to visit cuba but i can not buy online the cuba tourist card because they show me that the shipment is not possible. can you help me

Hello, About how long does it take for the online green visa to be approved?

i am citizen of Azerbaijan can I travel from US to Cuba or from Cuba to US?

Travelling to Cuba from Ontario, Canada with Air Transat. What is our process for the travel card? January 8, 2022

I am Singaporean. Flying to Havana via Paris. Do I need the tourist card?! Is it true that Singaporean exempted?

Watet bottle with filter ????

Can we not buy bottled water in Cuba??

yes you can, and some of your accommodations will arrange for it in advance. So, you just tell them how many bottles, and you pay your host

If I’m a citizen of the Philippines but traveling from the US, do I need to get a visa of Cuba?

Unfortunately, if you are traveling from the US, you will have to abide by the same rules as US citizens. So, you may consider a different route of travel.

Thank you – such a clear explanation, and the only one that answered every question for me!

I successfully made it to Cuba from Miami after years of doubts.

Can I use either the pink or green card ? I’m entering through jamaica and returning straight to the us

Hi, I have gone to the Cuba embassy in Mexico but surprisingly the visa they gave me is the same with the visa tourist after checking the one on your website here. Please are you sure they will allow me entry and will I still need to buy a cuba tourist card again. Your answer is greatly appreciated

Am a Nigerian tourist in Mexico, will I need a visa or just tourist card to go to Cuba from mexico, please kindly inform

Hi Adebisi, You will probably need a visa to Cuba. I would advise you to contact the Cuban embassy in Mexico to get a more accurate answer.

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Visiting Cuba from the USA in 2023: Your Cuban Visa and all the travel Questions, Answered!

By: yaima paez, monday may 29th, 2023.

Visiting Cuba from the USA: Your Cuban Visa and all the Travel Questions, Answered!

Pack your bags because we’ve got your back!   But before embarking on your Cuban trip, let’s review some commonly asked questions about obtaining a Cuban visa.

  • Do I need a visa to travel to Cuba from the USA? How can I obtain a Cuban visa? Picture this: you’re about to embark on a journey to Cuba, and the first step is getting your hands on that visa! We can do that for you and answer any questions you have. But don’t worry. We have a special summer deal, and your visa will only cost $75. Reach out for more details or start the process here . Plus, we have great suggestions of hotels, tours, and insider tips (hint: at OnCubaTravel, our team of travel experts are Cubans!).
  • What documents are required for a Cuban visa application? Get your documents ready! You’ll need a passport with at least six months of validity left, a completed visa application form , and proof of your travel arrangements (think flight tickets, itinerary, etc).
  • How long does it take to get a Cuban visa? The visa processing time can vary, so planning ahead is always a good idea. Start the application process a few weeks before your anticipated departure date to ensure you have enough time for the process and any necessary adjustments. Time flies when you’re excited, right?
  • What type of visa should I apply for as a tourist? With People-to-People travel and the travel licenses restored by the Biden-Harris administration, Americans can travel to Cuba, and enjoy cultural, artistic, and educational activities. There are twelve themes under which Americans can legally visit Cuba, including one called “support to the Cuban people”.   If you have questions and you feel ready to organize your trip, email us! ( [email protected] ) or reach out to learn more and start planning. OnCubaTravel is based in the United States and we are licensed to provide travel services to Americans.  
  • Can I apply for a Cuban visa online? Guess what? That is when we come handy! We can handle the visa, and everything else you might need, so you only focus on the fun! At OnCubaTravel, we have +7 years of experience providing services in the USA to travel to Cuba.  

Ready to make your 2023 summer trip to Cuba come true?   Check certified, locally-guided excursions, programs, hotels, cars, travelers experience and more here !  

Nos vemos!  

Still have your heart set on visiting Cuba?

Don’t let the confusion coming out of, washington stand in your way.

Travel to Cuba is still legal with OnCuba Travel!

Don’t worry, our experts at OnCuba Travel can help to book your dream

experience to Cuba.

cuba travel visa

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Travel by US citizens remains largely allowed and legal
  • Yes, Americans can still travel to Cuba! People-to-people travel is the only way for Americans to visit Cuba and gives you an opportunity to discover Cuba through its people and from a local perspective. And, you can do it legally through OnCuba Travel.
  • Policy changes on travel can create confusion and make it appear that planning a trip to the island is more difficult. But if you ask for the right help, the experience can be quite the opposite.

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Pink Cuban Tourist Card for U.S citizens

Getting a Cuba Visa (Tourist Card)  Isn’t Hard or Complicated

It’s true—traveling to Cuba as a U.S. citizen requires some planning and a few extra hurdles. But nothing you can’t handle!

One step that can trip people up is the Cuban tourist visa—or tourist card, or tarjeta de turista —which you will need to have when you arrive in Cuba. It seems complicated, but don’t worry—in this article we detail everything you need to know about the two types of visas , who needs a visa, and how to get one before your trip.

This post contains some affiliate links, which means we may earn a commission at no cost to you. Thanks for your support in helping run this site.

Who Needs the Cuba Visa?

A tourist visa (officially called a tarjeta de turista or tourist card) is a requirement for virtually every foreigner entering Cuba for tourism or for a non-specific reason (as opposed to traveling for journalism, business, government related activities, etc). 

So if you’re a U.S. citizen planning a trip to Cuba under the Support for the Cuban People category , you’re required by the Cuban government to have this visa/tourist card, even though the U.S. doesn’t consider your trip to be “touristic in nature.” 

Why does it work like this? Because the Cuba tourist visa is not related to the U.S. government’s travel restrictions or the 12 categories of legal reasons for travel. The visa requirement is a Cuban government rule that applies to all foreigners entering the country.

Confused about visas? Allow us to explain.

Our mission is to provide clear, accurate information on Cuba travel for Americans. Check out our article on visas or visit our site for more!

Two Types of Visas: Pink and Green

Cuba issues two kinds of tourist visas—one is pink and one is green. Choosing the right one depends on where you are coming from , not by your national citizenship . 

If you’re entering Cuba directly from the United States, you’ll need the pink tourist card. The pink card can be acquired online ahead of your trip through authorized agencies like Online Tourist Card or through your airline on the day of your departure. 

If you’re a worrier, get it ahead of time to spare the nerves. Otherwise, just remember to set aside another $80-$100 USD in the budget for the departure day purchase.

If you’re entering Cuba from ANY country other than the U.S. you’ll need the green card, which you can order online as well . The green visa is also typically available through your airline at the airport, but where and how to get it differs depending on where you’re flying from. 

Both the pink and green visas allow you to remain in Cuba for up to 30 days and can be renewed for an additional 30 days. 

The Process of Getting a Visa Online

There are a variety of online agencies that process Cuba visas, which is just a fancy way of saying you pay them money, and they send you the visa.

It’s quite straightforward—there is no application or approval process. You simply fill in flight information, share your address and pay a fee as you would any online transaction. The visa is shipped to the physical address of your choice. We recommend reputable agencies with simple clear sites like Online Tourist Card and Easy Tourist Card , but there are lots of others out there.

Getting a Visa Through your Airline 

All the major U.S. airlines that fly to Cuba should provide visa information to travelers once flights are purchased. 

If you’re flying with American Airlines, United, Southwest, or Delta, you can get your visa at the departure gate before you board the flight for your final leg of the trip, if you choose not to get them online ahead of time . 

Filling Out the Actual Visa Card

If you have the visa shipped to you, you’ll have to fill it out ahead of time with a blue or black pen. It’s simple: there are spaces for last name, first name, DOB, passport number, and citizenship. You’ll repeat this on both sides of the document—and then you’re done! Typically, one side is taken at Cuban immigration when you arrive and the remaining half is taken when you depart the island. 

Booking Lodging? Taxis? Activities? Restaurants?

Our mission is to provide expert advice on Cuba travel for Americans. Our private business guide connects you directly to Cuban shops, restaurants, hotels, activities, and more!

Visas for Charter Flights

Whether you’re flying commercial or charter, the visas rules are the same. Some charter flights issue visas themselves or include them in the ticket price, so it’s important to contact the airline to see what if they offer it and at what price, and order one ahead of time if they don’t.  

The Bottom Line

Getting visas is easy and it really doesn’t matter where you get them, as long as you have right one. Both the pink visa and green visa are available for purchase through your airline, but for those who want the assurance of having the visa in hand ahead of time, they can be purchased online and shipped to your home ahead of your trip .

Contact Us With Questions

If you have any uncertainty around what is required—visa or otherwise—to go to Cuba, don’t hesitate to email us or schedule a call with our team . We’re Cuba travel experts, and we love to help!

Cuba Travel Requirements for U.S. Citizens

Keep in mind, there are several other things you’ll need to plan a legal, hassle-free trip to Cuba. 

CAYOS: Cuba Travel for Americans

Our mission is to provide clear, accurate information on Cuba travel for Americans. Check out our articles or visit our site for maps, itineraries and more!

Documents You’ll Need

Before you take off, make sure you have a valid passport with plenty of time until it expires. You’ll also need to complete the official Cuban health form within 72 hours prior to your departure. 

The Cuban government also requires visitors to have proof of health insurance coverage, but if you book a flight on a U.S. airline, the required insurance is included in the price of your ticket. This insurance gives you access to Cuba’s network of tourist hospitals and clinics should you need them. 

If your flight originates outside of the U.S., you can purchase insurance independently or pay a small fee for access to Cuba’s tourist system. 

Travel Categories

If you are a U.S. citizen, you will also need to adhere to the guidelines of the General License for travel to Cuba , which allows for 12 categories of permissible travel to Cuba. We recommend using the “Support for the Cuban People” category since it allows for the widest variety of activities, including many that can be arranged without the need of a tour company. 

Planning a “Support for the Cuban People” Trip

To ensure that your trip meets the requirements, you should create an itinerary with activities that support locals and meals in private restaurants to demonstrate that your trip will be directly supporting private Cuban businesses and individuals. 

You should also avoid government run hotels—luckily there are plentiful legal, private lodging options in the form of Airbnb style vacation rentals, boutique hotels, and inexpensive no-frills rooms for rent. 

Creating an Itinerary

To meet the U.S. travel requirements for the Support for the Cuban People category, your itinerary should demonstrate that you’ve planned out a full schedule of activities for each day that you are in Cuba. You should avoid any activities that are purely touristic and don’t support local private business, like going to the beach or staying at a resort. 

Arranging guided tours and activities operated by locals is the easiest way to meet the requirements for the Support for the Cuban People category. In Havana and most major towns, there are many options for walking tours, museum tours, cooking classes, dance lessons, and other activities led by locals. 

Non-guided activities are also possible, like shopping in private stores, purchasing artwork or artisanal crafts made by private artists, or attending a show by a musician or band. However, if your schedule consists entirely of self-guided activities, you risk not being in compliance with the rules.

To help travelers, we provide meticulously curated maps and itineraries, and offer planning sessions via phone where we share expert advice. 

Departure and Return: What to Expect

Both on your way to Cuba and on your return to the US, you won’t be asked to show your itinerary and immigration officers typically ask the same types of questions that are asked of travelers returning from any foreign country. 

You may be asked a couple of routine questions about your trip, and it’s appropriate (but by no means required) to mention you were traveling under the Support for the Cuban People category. 

Documenting your Trip

It’s important to have as detailed an itinerary as possible and photos of your activities to keep for your records. Any receipts, ticket stubs, or other proof of your activities should be kept as well.

The U.S. government recommends that travelers keep their itinerary and any other records from their trip (like photos or receipts) for 5 years to share with the government if requested. 

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The Cuban visa is a two-part card. In the past, Cuban immigration officials would take one half upon arrival in Cuba, and guests would surrender the other half upon departure. However, as of publiction, immigration gives you back both halves of the tourist visa, but ask that you surrender the entire document upon leaving Cuba. Either way, please make sure to keep your Cuban visa in a safe place with you throughout your trip so you have it with you when you depart the country.


Citizens of several countries may be required to carry an A-1 visa to enter Cuba. This applies to individuals who hold passports from one of the following countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Eritrea, Ethiopia,  Ghana,  Guinea, India, Iraq, Iran, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Syria, and Yemen.

If you are a reporter or journalist traveling with insightCuba for journalism purposes, you may need a special press visa to enter the island as a US correspondent. Please contact insightCuba at 800-450-2822 for more information on how to obtain your press visa for Cuba.


If you are a Cuban American born in Cuba, you may need a special visa for entry to Cuba. Please call us for more information.

HE-11 and Habilitación visas for Cuban-Born Travelers

If you were born in Cuba, you may need a special visa called the HE-11 for entry to Cuba. This is a visa required by the Cuban government and does not pertain to U.S. government regulations or policies of insightCuba.

Persons who left Cuba before December 31, 1970 can travel to Cuba with their U.S. passport (or green card) but will need to apply for a HE-11 visa to enter Cuba. Applicants must have a copy of a valid U.S. passport as well as a copy of any official U.S. document that proves residency outside of Cuba before December 31, 1970 (for example, an old school or medical record, electricity/phone bill, etc.) and must be included in an application.

Persons who left Cuba after December 31, 1970 can travel to Cuba using both their Cuban and American documentation. They must have a valid U.S. and Cuban passport (dual citizenship) and have a corresponding visa called a Habilitación (this accompanies the Cuba passport and needs to be renewed regularly). Copies of these documents including the Habilitación need to be shown upon check-in at the airport. If a guest needs to apply for a Cuban passport, please let us know and we will assist you. Please note that the processing of a new Cuban passport is known to take 6-12 months.

Please note the following:

We can only process special visas including HE-11, press, or the Habilitación for guests traveling with insightCuba. Processing times can take 4-6 weeks but could be longer. Processing times are not the responsibility of insightCuba as all visas are processed by the Cuban Embassy in Washington, DC. InsightCuba is not responsible for the issuance of special visas before the guest’s scheduled time of travel, however, our office will assist guests in the best way possible regarding special visas or travel plans. This does not apply to regular Cuban visas or Cuban tourist cards. 


Please note: A valid U.S. passport is required for entry into Cuba and for us to obtain your Cuban Visa. If you do not have a valid U.S. passport, you may apply for a new one by visiting the U.S. Passports & International travel website by clicking here .

Your U.S. passport must also be valid for six months after your return date from your insightCuba tour. Please make sure to check your passport and renew as soon as possible to avoid having to incur expedited service fees.

You may read more about the U.S. Passport Requirements to Cuba by visiting our FAQ on this topic here .

We want to make sure your trip is an enjoyable and memorable one. If you have any questions please call us at 800-450-2822.

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†† $199 deposit available on select packages. Valid for new bookings only. Changes to your package, departure date, or flights may require an increased deposit. See additional terms & conditions .

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20 things to know before visiting Cuba

Brendan Sainsbury

Jan 5, 2024 • 8 min read

cuba travel visa

Be ready for your visit to Cuba with these top tips on what to expect © Westend61 / Getty Images

To a first-time traveler, Cuba can seem like a confusing jigsaw puzzle, particularly if you’re breaking free of the resorts and traveling around on your own.

The Spanish spoken here is fast and hard to decipher, many streets have two different names and the country’s fickle and highly complicated monetary situation could fill its own guidebook. Yet the country’s pleasures are well worth the research you should do before you set off.

To help you be prepared, here is everything you need to know before planning a trip to Cuba.

1. Double-check your insurance

You are required to have medical insurance to visit Cuba and will need to bring digital or printed proof of your policy. Random checks are made at the airport. If you arrive without insurance, you’ll be asked to buy a Cuban policy at the airport for US$30.

2. Fill out your passenger information in advance

Cuba uses an online form called  D’Viajeros  to gather traveler information, including immigration and health data, in advance of travel. Fill out the form digitally up to 72 hours before your arrival in Cuba.

Friends sit on a coastal wall with their legs dangling over the sea and pose for a selfie

3. Every visitor needs a tourist card

To enter Cuba, all visitors need to present a completed tourist card . It’s usually available through your airline (ask when booking) and included in the price of your ticket.

If not, you can purchase one through a Cuban travel agency. Costs range from US$50 to US$85. Citizens of 20 African and Asian countries require a formal visa to enter Cuba. Check the situation for your country before booking.

4. Cash and currency: it’s complicated!

Money in Cuba is confusing, even to Cubans . Since the country abolished convertibles (CUC) in January 2021 and took the US dollar out of circulation in June 2021, there has been massive inflation and the emergence of a rampant black market. The knock-on effect is a bewildering dual economy.

The official currency of Cuba is the Cuban peso (CUP), but foreign currencies are also widely accepted, especially by private businesses who need hard cash to buy non-rationed goods in MLC (freely convertible currency) shops.

State-run enterprises and banks use official exchange rates. However, the prices of the superior services offered by private businesses generally reflect black market exchange rates.

Hence a main dish in a private restaurant in Havana will cost around CUP$500 (US$21). That’s an expensive meal if you’re paying in pesos bought from a Cuban bank.

However, most private restaurants will also accept payment in euros using a more favorable exchange rate. Some will even have a separate menu with prices printed in euros.    

When buying something from a private business – be it a restaurant, casa particular (private accommodation) or taxi service – it’s usually best to pay in a foreign currency. Always ask upfront what currencies they accept and what exchange rate they use for their published peso prices.

Euros is the most interchangeable currency and the one preferred by Cubans. You can also use and exchange Canadian dollars and pound sterling.

US dollars still circulate on the black market, but we don’t recommend bringing them. The best bet, when you arrive, is to keep most of your money in a foreign currency and only change small amounts into pesos for incidentals like museum entry, concert tickets and tips.

5. MLC is a currency with no cash form

The Moneda Libremente Convertible (MLC) is a currency approved by the Cuban government in 2020 that can be used in certain shops to buy higher-end goods.

The currency doesn’t exist as cash and its value is pegged with the US dollar. It’s used mainly by Cubans with special magnetic cards. 

Tourists needn’t worry too much about MLC$, although prices will sometimes be displayed in the currency in state-run enterprises such as cigar shops or airport souvenir stores where you can pay with a non-US credit card.

6. Only some credit cards will work

Credit cards are increasingly popular in Cuba and in many state-run businesses are the preferred (and sometimes only) method of payment.

Despite promises made in the Obama era, credit cards linked to US banks are not accepted. Private businesses almost never have credit card machines, meaning your only option is cash.

A blue classic car passes a cowboy-hatted man on a horse on a dirt road leading into Vinales, Cuba

7. Pack your favorite casual clothes – and men need a shirt

Dress in Cuba is casual, so you can leave your high heels and tux behind. The only real dress code is in cinemas, theaters and nightclubs, where male patrons are required to wear long trousers and shirts with sleeves or half-sleeves.  

8. Cuban Spanish is fast and often informal

If you speak Spanish, you’ll find that Cubans mostly use the informal tú form of address, rather than usted . In the plural, ustedes is used over vosotros .

If you don’t know someone, it’s best to address them as señor or señora , though you’ll hear Cubans use all kinds of substitutes such as socio , hermano , papa , chica/o  and asere .

9. Cuban cities are where the streets have two names

In most Cuban cities , the streets have two names: a contemporary one that is noted on maps and marked on street signs, and a pre-revolutionary one that is still used widely by the locals.

This can become confusing, especially when locals, unaware of the new street names, start giving out directions or addresses using the colloquial nomenclature. Always double-check addresses and, if possible, get two potential names for the street you’re looking for.

10. Understand the local art of queueing

Cubans have to endure a lot of long waits in boring queues, so they’ve invented a way of doing it that doesn’t involve standing in line. In a Cuban queue, you simply roll up at the bakery/clinic/visa office and yell out to the assembled masses, "Quien es último?" (Who’s last?).

Hopefully, someone in a 400m vicinity will answer your polite entreaty with the word, "yo" (me). That person is your yardstick. As long as they’re still around, feel free to go for a walk, sit in the lotus position or buy ice cream. When they get called up, be on your toes, you’re next!

11. Ask questions more than once  

Thanks to heavy bureaucracy, answers to simple requests aren’t always straightforward – or even correct. Probe politely and ask at least five different people before you make important decisions.

12. Bring something to keep you warm on a cold bus journey

Cuba has a countrywide state-run bus service called  Víazul that connects all of the main cities and some of the smaller towns. Prices are charged in MLC$ (the same rate as the US$) and tickets must be paid for with a credit card either in person or online.

A second service called Conectando, run by Cubanacán, also puts on buses in peak season along some of the more popular routes. Bring a sweater/jacket for long bus rides – the air-conditioning is akin to a chilly day in Vancouver.

Woman with camera in a candid shot in Trinidad, Cuba

13. Cuba is considered a safe place to travel

Cuba is one of the safest countries in the Americas in terms of violent crime. Pick-pocketing is more common but not rampant, and is mostly avoidable if you follow a few basic precautions: Wear a money belt, use safe boxes in hotel rooms and don’t flash your cash in public.

14. Solo female travelers report receiving unwanted attention

Solo female travelers report experiencing a good deal of unwanted attention, but it didn't necessarily spoil their enjoyment of traveling in Cuba.

There is a fine line between being open and friendly and harassment, and some men can cross that line by being overly familiar or asking too many personal questions. Learn some key phrases in Spanish that make it clear when you're not interested.

15. Beware of forgeries

Never change money with unlicensed traders on the streets. You run the risk of receiving estafas (forged notes).

16. Bring your own medicines

On one level, Cuba has a good health system (it invented and quickly distributed three COVID-19 vaccines); on the other, it is perennially short of pharmaceuticals.

Bring all the prescription medications you think you’ll need, as well others you might like ibuprofen or paracetamol. If you’d like to donate some medicines to the people of Cuba, it is currently possible to bring in 10kg of medical supplies tax-free (pack them in a separate bag). 

Portrait of an Afro-Cuban woman smoking cigar and smiling in Havana, Cuba

17. Avoid dodgy cigars

Cuba has its share of jineteros (touts) spinning elaborate stories about super-cheap, high-quality cigars procured by their brother/mother/cousin from the factory. Don’t believe them. Instead, buy your cigars in state-run shops such as the Casa del Habano chain. Cigars sold on the street are invariably factory cast-offs and not genuine.

18. Driving is not as easy as you think

With light traffic on the road, driving might seem like an easy proposition , but with elevated rental prices and cars often in short supply, it’s not always so.

Add in sporadic signposting, potholed roads and a wide array of hazards – goats, horses, bicycles, kids and slow-moving, fume-belching trucks – and you might want to consider getting the bus or, at least, employing the services of a chauffeur .

19. Bring toilet paper and sanitary products

The pandemic made the provision of antiseptic hand lotion more common, but the same can’t be said of toilet paper. Carry your own roll and/or gravitate to four- or five-star hotels when you’re caught short in the city.

Re-usable pads and silicon cups, or disposable pads and tampons are must-pack items if you're expecting your period while you're in Cuba. These are in high demand here.

20. Don’t drink the water

The water won’t kill you, but it might give you a little queasiness or an upset stomach. Fortunately, bottled water is abundant and cheap. An even better idea is to bring your own filter bottle or water purification tablets.

This article was first published Feb 5, 2022 and updated Jan 5, 2024.

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COVID-19: travel health notice for all travellers

Cuba travel advice

Latest updates: Health - Travel health notice for Oropouche fever in the Americas added.

Last updated: June 17, 2024 11:23 ET

On this page

Safety and security, entry and exit requirements, laws and culture, natural disasters and climate, cuba - exercise a high degree of caution.

Exercise a high degree of caution in Cuba due to shortages of basic necessities including food, medicine and fuel.

Resort areas - Take normal security precautions

  • Cayo Largo del Sur
  • Cayo Santa Maria
  • Guardalavaca

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Petty crime

Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, occurs.

Theft generally occurs in crowded places such as:

  • tourist areas
  • public buses
  • night clubs

It can also occur in isolated areas.

Theft from hotel rooms, particularly in private accommodations ( casas particulares ), and from cars is common.

  • Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
  • Don’t pack valuables in your checked luggage
  • Avoid showing signs of affluence
  • Keep electronic devices out of sight
  • Carry valid identification at all times
  • Keep a digital and a hard copy of your ID and travel documents
  • Avoid carrying large amounts of cash
  • Never leave belongings unattended in a vehicle, even in the trunk

Violent crime

Incidents of violent crime are not frequent, but assaults may occur. They mainly occur during a burglary or robbery.

  • Stay in accommodations with good security
  • Keep your windows and doors locked at all times
  • If threatened by robbers, don't resist

Credit card and ATM fraud may occur.

Be cautious when using debit or credit cards:

  • pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
  • use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
  • avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature
  • cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
  • check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements

Some businesses may try to charge exorbitant prices, namely taxis and classic car rentals. Disputes about overcharging may lead to violence.

  • Always confirm prices before consuming or taking up a service
  • Avoid running a tab
  • Avoid leaving your credit card with bar or restaurant staff
  • Check your bill to make sure it’s exact

Some hustlers specialize in defrauding tourists. Most of them speak some English or French and go out of their way to appear friendly. They may offer to serve as tour guides or to facilitate the purchase of cigars. Some have used violence in their efforts to steal tourists.

Fraudulent tour agents and taxi drivers also operate throughout the country, including at Havana’s international airport. Thefts of luggage from taxi trunks have occurred.

In bars, sex workers, including minors, may be very persistent and intrusive with tourists who refuse their advances. Foreigners, including Canadians, have been the victim of theft after engaging in sexual relations, and some of them have faced child sex accusations.  

  • Use reputable tour operators and registered taxis only
  • Avoid independent street vendors
  • Be wary of strangers who seem too friendly

Overseas fraud

Cuba faces chronic and severe shortages of ‎basic necessities, including:

  • bottled water
  • public water supply
  • hard-currency

Fuel shortages are currently critical and affect a wide range of services. Travelling across the island is extremely challenging. Public transportation services, including taxis, are often disrupted, leaving tourists with few options to travel. Some travellers have been temporarily stranded with a rental car. Intermittent shortages of tap water provided by municipalities happen, including in Havana and in resorts.

Hotels and resorts, that often use generators during power outages, may not be able to maintain their services. Fuel shortages may also affect government services.

Local authorities enforce the rationing of food and medications, which could also affect travellers.

Shortages may lead to disruptions to other essential services. There are often long line-ups at gas stations that have led to altercations.

  • Plan accordingly
  • Bring some basic necessities with you such as toiletries and medication
  • Keep a supply of water, food and fuel on hand
  • Make sure you always have access to a complete emergency kit

Power outages

Power outages occur regularly outside of Havana and touristic areas.

Obtaining services during an outage is challenging.

Women’s safety

Women travelling alone may be subject to some forms of sexual harassment

Incidents of sexual assault against Canadian women have occurred, including at beach resorts.

If you’re the victim of a sexual assault, you should report it immediately to the nearest Canadian consulate or embassy and seek medical assistance. You should also report the incident to Cuban authorities and ensure that local police provide you with a Comprobante de Denuncia. This document confirms that a report has been filed.

A criminal investigation will likely not be possible if no formal complaint is made to Cuban authorities before you depart the country.

Police officers may speak only Spanish.

Advice for women travellers

Spiked food and drinks

Snacks, beverages, gum and cigarettes may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.

  • Be wary of accepting these items from new acquaintances
  • Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers


The telecommunications network in Cuba is poor. Connections are unreliable and may be intermittent.

Some Canadian cell phones may not work, even in large cities. Internet access is limited across the island.

Local authorities control telecommunications. They may block access to mobile phone and Internet in case of civil unrest or before demonstrations.

  • Don’t rely on your mobile phone for emergencies, especially outside major cities
  • Subscribe to and install a VPN service before leaving Canada
  • Avoid travelling alone
  • Inform a family member or friend of your itinerary

Online transactions

Online banking or shopping may be challenging in Cuba, if at all possible. Most Cuban websites are unsecure. Many are inaccessible.

Some travellers, who bought their travel package online on a travel website in Canada, found out on arrival in Cuba that their hotel received no reservation or payment.

  • Avoid online shopping
  • Check with the hotel if they accept online reservations and payments if you plan to book online


Demonstrations sometimes occur, even if taking part in them may be illegal. Local authorities will break up political demonstrations or gatherings not sanctioned by the government. They may also block access to the Internet, including social media, without notice.

Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic, public transportation.

  • Don’t participate in demonstrations
  • Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities
  • Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations

Mass gatherings (large-scale events)

Water activities

Rescue services may not be consistent with international standards. Tidal changes can cause powerful currents, and riptides are common. Not all beaches have lifeguards or warning flags to warn of hazardous conditions.

  • Never swim alone or after hours
  • Don’t swim outside marked areas
  • Monitor weather warnings
  • Avoid visiting beaches or coastal areas during periods of severe weather warnings
  • Don’t dive into unknown water, as hidden rocks or shallow depths can cause serious injury or death
  • Consult residents and tour operators for information on possible hazards and safe swimming areas

Tour operators and diving centres may not adhere to international standards.

If you undertake adventure sports, such as diving:

  • choose a reputable company that has insurance
  • ensure that your travel insurance covers the recreational activities you choose
  • don’t use the equipment if you have any doubts about its safety

Recreational boating

If you are planning to go boating:

  • know the navigation rules
  • make sure life jackets are available for all passengers
  • follow safe practices for all water activities such as jet-skiing, water-skiing or fishing
  • don’t overload your boat capacity
  • carry a VHF marine radio that will generate your position in case of emergency
  • be prepared for emergencies

Water safety abroad

Road safety

Road safety standards are poor throughout the country. Accidents causing fatalities are common.

Road conditions

Road conditions are poor throughout the island, with the exception of the Central Highway, which runs west to east across the country. Driving may be dangerous due to:

  • poorly maintained roads
  • lack of signage
  • Inadequate lighting
  • roaming livestock
  • horse-drawn carts
  • pedestrians
  • slow-moving traffic

Most Cuban cars are old and in poor condition. They often lack standard safety equipment. Some cars and most bicycles don’t have functioning lights.

Driving habits

Some drivers don’t respect traffic laws. Many of them, driving an electric vehicle for which licence and registration are not required, are inexperienced and unqualified. Drinking and driving is also common.  

If you choose to drive in Cuba:

  • do so defensively at all times
  • avoid travelling at night
  • travel in groups when possible
  • never pick up hitchhikers, who have been known to assault drivers

Public transportation

City buses are scarce, overcrowded and poorly maintained. Bus service is not reliable.

Incidents of pickpocketing are frequent.

Tour companies offer good bus service between airports and the all-inclusive resorts. Buses used for organized day trips from hotels are usually in good condition.

Official taxis are generally reliable.

Old-model private vehicles offered as taxis are not equipped with standard safety features. They have no insurance coverage for passengers in case of an accident.

  • Use only registered taxis
  • Avoid flagging a taxi down on the street
  • Never share a taxi with strangers
  • Agree on a fare before departure, as taxis are not equipped with meters

The rail network is comprehensive, connecting most of the island, but it’s unreliable and slow. Train service is limited to Cuban nationals only.

Health incidents

The Government of Canada continues to investigate the potential causes of unexplained health incidents reported by some Canadian diplomatic staff and dependents posted to Havana.

There is no evidence that Canadian travellers to Cuba are at risk.

We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

Information about foreign domestic airlines

Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.

We have obtained the information on this page from the Cuban authorities. It can, however, change at any time.

Verify this information with the  Foreign Representatives in Canada .

Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.

Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.

Regular Canadian passport

Your passport must be valid for the expected duration of your stay in Cuba.

Passport for official travel

Different entry rules may apply.

Official travel

Passport with “X” gender identifier

While the Government of Canada issues passports with an “X” gender identifier, it cannot guarantee your entry or transit through other countries. You might face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the “X” gender identifier. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Other travel documents

Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

Useful links

  • Foreign Representatives in Canada
  • Canadian passports

Tourist visa: required Family visa: required Business visa: required

Tourist card

Canadian tourists travelling to Cuba need a visa, known as tourist card. The tourist card allows you to stay in Cuba for up to 90 days. The tourist card is generally included in holiday packages provided by tour operators or airlines providing direct flights from Canada. If you go to Cuba on your own or transit via another country, you are responsible for obtaining the tourist card from a Cuban government office in Canada. You may also buy it at some airports in Canada and in the United States.

Length of stay

As a Canadian tourist, you may stay in Cuba for up to 6 months.

However, you must obtain an extension of stay if you intend to stay longer than the initial 90-day period allowed by the standard tourist card.

D’Viajeros traveller information portal  – Government of Cuba

Arrival form

You must provide information on your arrival in Cuba via an online form within 72 hours before entering the country.

Once done, you will receive a QR code by email.

You must show an electronic or printed version of the QR code to authorities upon arrival.

Health insurance

You must show proof of valid health insurance to enter Cuba.

All health insurance policies are recognized in Cuba, except those issued by U.S. insurance companies. However, the Cuban immigration authorities will decide which proof of health insurance is acceptable.

Proof of health insurance may be:

  • an insurance policy
  • an insurance certificate
  • a Canadian provincial health insurance card

If you don’t have proof of health insurance or if the proof you present doesn’t satisfy the Cuban immigration authorities, you may have to obtain health insurance from a Cuban insurance company upon arrival. This insurance may have limited coverage. Local authorities may refuse your entry to the country.

Canadian provincial health care coverage provides very limited coverage outside Canada. It won’t pay for medical bills up-front. It does not include air evacuation, and neither does Cuban health insurance.

Cuban authorities won’t let you leave the country with outstanding medical bills, which are payable by credit card only. You will need to remain in Cuba until all debts are paid.

  • Make sure you purchase the best health insurance you can afford
  • Ensure the insurance includes medical evacuation and hospital stays

More on Travel insurance

Other entry requirements

Customs officials will ask you to show them:

  • a return or onward ticket
  • proof of sufficient funds to cover your stay
  • proof that you have a place to stay if arriving with “air only” tickets

Dual citizenship

If you’re both a Canadian and Cuban citizen, you must:

  • present your valid Cuban passport to the immigration authorities to enter Cuba
  • have a valid Canadian passport to return to Canada

If you were born in Cuba, you should contact a Cuban government office in Canada before you leave to ensure compliance with Cuban regulations, regardless of your current citizenship. Failure to do so may result in your being refused entry into Cuba or being detained upon entry.

Canadian permanent residents

You will not be able to leave Cuba if you are a Canadian permanent resident and are without a valid permanent resident card. If your card is lost or stolen, you must contact the Canadian Embassy in Havana to obtain a travel document that will allow you to leave the country. This procedure can take up to 10 working days. Once the document is ready, you'll need to make an appointment with the immigration section of the Canadian Embassy in Havana to collect it before returning to Canada.

Permanent resident travel document: How to apply

Health screening

You may be subjected to a medical screening or interrogation by public health authorities when you enter or exit Cuba, or when reporting for domestic flights.

You may be subject to a mandatory quarantine for medical observation for up to 7 days if local authorities believe that:

  • you have come in contact with a suspected carrier of one of these viruses
  • you’re arriving from a country with a known epidemic
  • Children and travel

Travelling with children

Yellow fever

Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).

Relevant Travel Health Notices

  • Global Measles Notice - 13 March, 2024
  • Zika virus: Advice for travellers - 31 August, 2023
  • COVID-19 and International Travel - 13 March, 2024
  • Oropouche fever in the Americas - 17 June, 2024

This section contains information on possible health risks and restrictions regularly found or ongoing in the destination. Follow this advice to lower your risk of becoming ill while travelling. Not all risks are listed below.

Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably 6 weeks before you travel to get personalized health advice and recommendations.

Routine vaccines

Be sure that your  routine vaccinations , as per your province or territory , are up-to-date before travelling, regardless of your destination.

Some of these vaccinations include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.

Pre-travel vaccines and medications

You may be at risk for preventable diseases while travelling in this destination. Talk to a travel health professional about which medications or vaccines may be right for you, based on your destination and itinerary. 

Yellow fever   is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.

Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.

  • There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.

Country Entry Requirement*

  • Proof of vaccination is required if you are coming from or have transited through an airport of a country   where yellow fever occurs.


  • Vaccination is not recommended.
  • Discuss travel plans, activities, and destinations with a health care professional.
  • Contact a designated  Yellow Fever Vaccination Centre  well in advance of your trip to arrange for vaccination.

About Yellow Fever

Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada * It is important to note that  country entry requirements  may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest  diplomatic or consular office  of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.

There is a risk of hepatitis A in this destination. It is a disease of the liver. People can get hepatitis A if they ingest contaminated food or water, eat foods prepared by an infectious person, or if they have close physical contact (such as oral-anal sex) with an infectious person, although casual contact among people does not spread the virus.

Practise  safe food and water precautions and wash your hands often. Vaccination is recommended for all travellers to areas where hepatitis A is present.

Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. It can spread quickly from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

Anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of being infected with it when travelling internationally.

Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are fully protected against measles.

  Hepatitis B is a risk in every destination. It is a viral liver disease that is easily transmitted from one person to another through exposure to blood and body fluids containing the hepatitis B virus.  Travellers who may be exposed to blood or other bodily fluids (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) are at higher risk of getting hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended for all travellers. Prevent hepatitis B infection by practicing safe sex, only using new and sterile drug equipment, and only getting tattoos and piercings in settings that follow public health regulations and standards.

 The best way to protect yourself from seasonal influenza (flu) is to get vaccinated every year. Get the flu shot at least 2 weeks before travelling.  

 The flu occurs worldwide. 

  •  In the Northern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs from November to   April.
  •  In the Southern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs between April and   October.
  •  In the tropics, there is flu activity year round. 

The flu vaccine available in one hemisphere may only offer partial protection against the flu in the other hemisphere.

The flu virus spreads from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Clean your hands often and wear a mask if you have a fever or respiratory symptoms.

In this destination, rabies is carried by dogs and some wildlife, including bats. Rabies is a deadly disease that spreads to humans primarily through bites or scratches from an infected animal. While travelling, take precautions , including keeping your distance from animals (including free-roaming dogs), and closely supervising children.

If you are bitten or scratched by an animal while travelling, immediately wash the wound with soap and clean water and see a health care professional. Rabies treatment is often available in this destination. 

Before travel, discuss rabies vaccination with a health care professional. It may be recommended for travellers who are at high risk of exposure (e.g., occupational risk such as veterinarians and wildlife workers, children, adventure travellers and spelunkers, and others in close contact with animals). 

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious viral disease. It can spread from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

It is recommended that all eligible travellers complete a COVID-19 vaccine series along with any additional recommended doses in Canada before travelling. Evidence shows that vaccines are very effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. While vaccination provides better protection against serious illness, you may still be at risk of infection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Anyone who has not completed a vaccine series is at increased risk of being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and is at greater risk for severe disease when travelling internationally.

Before travelling, verify your destination’s COVID-19 vaccination entry/exit requirements. Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are adequately protected against COVID-19.

Safe food and water precautions

Many illnesses can be caused by eating food or drinking beverages contaminated by bacteria, parasites, toxins, or viruses, or by swimming or bathing in contaminated water.

  • Learn more about food and water precautions to take to avoid getting sick by visiting our eat and drink safely abroad page. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
  • Avoid getting water into your eyes, mouth or nose when swimming or participating in activities in freshwater (streams, canals, lakes), particularly after flooding or heavy rain. Water may look clean but could still be polluted or contaminated.
  • Avoid inhaling or swallowing water while bathing, showering, or swimming in pools or hot tubs. 

Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.

Risk of developing travellers' diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor standards of hygiene and sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.

The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.

Typhoid   is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher among children, travellers going to rural areas, travellers visiting friends and relatives or those travelling for a long period of time.

Travellers visiting regions with a risk of typhoid, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation, should speak to a health care professional about vaccination.  

Salmonellosis is a common illness among travellers to this country. It can be spread through contaminated food or beverages, such as raw or undercooked poultry and eggs, as well as fruits or vegetables.

Practice safe food and water precautions . This includes only eating food that is properly cooked and still hot when served.

Pregnant women, children under 5 years of age, those over 60 years of age, and those with weakened immune systems are at greater risk of becoming seriously ill.

Most people recover on their own without medical treatment and from proper rehydration (drinking lots of fluids).

  • Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.

Travellers with severe symptoms should consult a health care professional as soon as possible.

Insect bite prevention

Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. When travelling to areas where infected insects may be present:

  • Use insect repellent (bug spray) on exposed skin
  • Cover up with light-coloured, loose clothes made of tightly woven materials such as nylon or polyester
  • Minimize exposure to insects
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in buildings that are not fully enclosed

To learn more about how you can reduce your risk of infection and disease caused by bites, both at home and abroad, visit our insect bite prevention page.

Find out what types of insects are present where you’re travelling, when they’re most active, and the symptoms of the diseases they spread.

There is a risk of chikungunya in this country.  The risk may vary between regions of a country.  Chikungunya is a virus spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. Chikungunya can cause a viral disease that typically causes fever and pain in the joints. In some cases, the joint pain can be severe and last for months or years.

Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times. There is no vaccine available for chikungunya.

  • In this country,   dengue  is a risk to travellers. It is a viral disease spread to humans by mosquito bites.
  • Dengue can cause flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can lead to severe dengue, which can be fatal.
  • The level of risk of dengue changes seasonally, and varies from year to year. The level of risk also varies between regions in a country and can depend on the elevation in the region.
  • Mosquitoes carrying dengue typically bite during the daytime, particularly around sunrise and sunset.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites . There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue.

Zika virus is a risk in this country. 

Zika virus is primarily spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. It can also be sexually transmitted. Zika virus can cause serious birth defects.

During your trip:

  • Prevent mosquito bites at all times.
  • Use condoms correctly or avoid sexual contact, particularly if you are pregnant.

If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, you should discuss the potential risks of travelling to this destination with your health care provider. You may choose to avoid or postpone travel. 

For more information, see Zika virus: Pregnant or planning a pregnancy.

Animal precautions

Some infections, such as rabies and influenza, can be shared between humans and animals. Certain types of activities may increase your chance of contact with animals, such as travelling in rural or forested areas, camping, hiking, and visiting wet markets (places where live animals are slaughtered and sold) or caves.

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, livestock (pigs, cows), monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats, and to avoid eating undercooked wild game.

Closely supervise children, as they are more likely to come in contact with animals.

Person-to-person infections

Stay home if you’re sick and practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette , which includes coughing or sneezing into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand. Reduce your risk of colds, the flu and other illnesses by:

  •   washing your hands often
  • avoiding or limiting the amount of time spent in closed spaces, crowded places, or at large-scale events (concerts, sporting events, rallies)
  • avoiding close physical contact with people who may be showing symptoms of illness 

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) , HIV , and mpox are spread through blood and bodily fluids; use condoms, practise safe sex, and limit your number of sexual partners. Check with your local public health authority pre-travel to determine your eligibility for mpox vaccine.  

Medical services and facilities

Good health care is limited in availability.

The health system is government-owned. The Cuban government operates hospitals and clinics throughout the island.

Medical professionals are generally adequately trained. However, facilities are in poor condition. They lack basic drugs, medical supplies and equipment. Hygiene practices may be inadequate.

Medical services are also available at most hotels and international clinics located in resort areas, where doctors and nurses provide initial emergency medical care reserved for foreigners. Health care provided in those clinics is usually better than services offered in public facilities.

Mental health care facilities are extremely limited. There are no hotlines available for this type of care in the country.

Emergency and ambulance services are limited. Response times may be slow, especially outside tourist areas.

Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.

Travel health and safety

 Many prescription medications may not be available in Cuba.

If you take prescription medication, you’re responsible for determining their legality in the country.

  • Bring enough of your medication with you
  • Always keep your medication in the original container
  • Pack your medication in your carry-on luggage
  • Carry a paper and an electronic copy of your prescriptions

Cuba faces severe medicine shortages, including antibiotics and common pain killers. In addition of your prescription medication, you should also bring your own basic medicine in sufficient quantities to last beyond the length of your intended stay.

Public health authorities implement insect control measures including periodic fumigation and aerial spraying.

  • Consult your doctor before traveling to see if the situation could affect you, especially if you suffer from respiratory ailments
  • Stay away from a nearby fumigation process

Death abroad

Standards of mortuary services in Cuba differ from those in Canada. Cultural and religious beliefs are not taken into consideration. Autopsies are mandatory.

There is one funeral home and one morgue in the country which cater to foreigners. Both are located in Havana. Only these facilities have the authorization to issue appropriate documentation to accompany human remains. Timelines for the repatriation of human remains are long and costly.

The capacity for refrigeration is limited, as well as the availability of coffins and urns. Embalming materials and techniques are unlike those in Canada. Embalming may not be an option in some circumstances.

Ensure your insurance includes coverage for the repatriation of human remains.

Death Abroad Factsheet

Keep in Mind...

The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.

Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a   travel health kit , especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.

You must abide by local laws.

Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad .

Transfer to a Canadian prison

Canada and Cuba accede the Treaty between the Government of Canada and the Government of the Republic of Cuba on the Serving of Penal Sentences. This enables a Canadian imprisoned in Cuba to request a transfer to a Canadian prison to complete a sentence. The transfer requires the agreement of both Canadian and Cuban authorities. This process can take a long time, and there is no guarantee that the transfer will be approved by either or both sides.

Cuban criminal justice

The criminal justice system in Cuba differs significantly from that in Canada. Charges are not laid until the investigation is complete. If you’re arrested in Cuba, you will likely be detained during the entire period of investigation. You should expect long delays to resolve your case. You will not be allowed to leave the country during this period.

Cuba’s constitution allows the death penalty, but since 2003, the country has effectively had a moratorium on carrying out death sentences.


Private property rights in Cuba are strictly controlled. Only Cubans and permanent residents can buy a property in Cuba or register a privately owned vehicle. Be wary of strangers or acquaintances offering to purchase these items on your behalf. If you plan on making investments in Cuba, seek legal advice in Canada and Cuba. Do so before making commitments. Related disputes could take time and be costly to resolve.

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect lengthy prison sentences.

  • Pack your own luggage and monitor it closely at all times
  • Don’t transport other people’s packages, bags or suitcases

Drugs, alcohol and travel

Child sex tourism

It's a serious criminal offence to have sex with minors in Cuba.

Local authorities are actively working to prevent child sex tourism. Tourists, including Canadians, have been convicted of offences related to the corruption of minors aged 16 and under.

Prison sentences for this type of crime range from 7 to 25 years. Release on bail before trial is unlikely.

Child Sex Tourism: It’s a Crime

 To get married in Cuba, you must provide several documents including:

  • your birth certificate
  • a copy of your passport
  • your decree absolute certificate if divorced
  • a death certificate for your spouse and a marriage certificate if widowed
  • an affidavit of your single status if you have never been married before

All documents must be translated into Spanish, certified, authenticated and legalised by the Embassy of Cuba in Canada.

 Consult the Embassy of Cuba in Canada if you wish to marry in Cuba, including to a Cuban national.

  • Foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada
  • Marriage overseas factsheet

Drones are prohibited.

They will be confiscated by the authorities upon entry.


Professional photographers require a visa to work in Cuba. They may also need a permit to import their equipment.

It’s forbidden to photograph, including with drones:

  • military and police installations or personnel
  • harbour, rail and airport facilities

Military zones and any other restricted or heavily guarded areas are not always identified.


Authorities may request to see your ID at any time.

  • Keep a photocopy of your passport in case it’s lost or seized
  • Keep a digital copy of your ID and travel documents

Dual citizenship is not legally recognized in Cuba.

If local authorities consider you a citizen of Cuba, they may refuse to grant you access to Canadian consular services. This will prevent us from providing you with those services.

Travellers with dual citizenship

International Child Abduction

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty. It can help parents with the return of children who have been removed to or retained in certain countries in violation of custody rights. It does not apply between Canada and Cuba.

If your child was wrongfully taken to, or is being held in Cuba by an abducting parent:

  • act as quickly as you can
  • consult a lawyer in Canada and in Cuba to explore all the legal options for the return of your child
  • report the situation to the nearest Canadian government office abroad or to the Vulnerable Children's Consular Unit at Global Affairs Canada by calling the Emergency Watch and Response Centre

If your child was removed from a country other than Canada, consult a lawyer to determine if The Hague Convention applies.

Be aware that Canadian consular officials cannot interfere in private legal matters or in another country's judicial affairs.

  • International Child Abductions: A guide for affected parents
  • Canadian embassies and consulates by destination
  • Request emergency assistance

Imports and exports

Personal effects and medicine.

Tourists are allowed to enter Cuba with personal effects but items entering the country for donations may be subject to import rules. They could be seized and taxed in accordance with local legislation. This includes:

  • new or used material goods
  • personal care products
  • medications

Cuban customs officials have the authority to decide what they deem to be for the tourist's personal use. They may apply steep tariffs for personal baggage exceeding the allowable weight.

You may export:

  • up to 20 cigars without documentation
  •  up to 50 cigars if they are in their original container, closed and sealed with the official hologram

If exceeding these amounts, you must provide a guarantee of origin certificate.

Failure to comply with this regulation will lead to the seizure of the cigars without compensation.

Art objects

Art objects, including artifacts and paintings purchased in Cuba, must be accompanied by an export permit. It’s usually provided by state-owned galleries.

In the absence of such a permit, items must be registered with the Registro Nacional de Bienes Culturales.

Ministry of Culture – Government of Cuba

Electronic devices

Electronic devices with GPS technology may be confiscated upon entry and returned upon departure.

Satellite telephones are forbidden.

Electronic cigarettes and personal vaporizers

You cannot bring electronic cigarettes or personal vaporizers to Cuba.

Customs officials will seize these items upon arrival.

Black market

Street vendors may offer you black-market goods, such as cigars, or ask to change dollars for Cuban currency.

Engaging in black-market transactions is illegal and can lead to difficulties with the Cuban authorities.

Cuban Customs Administration  – Government of Cuba

Boat traffic

The U.S. government closely monitors boat traffic in the Straits of Florida. It will seize any vessel not bearing a licence from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) if it believes it’s headed for Cuba.

You’re subject to these measures if you dock your Canadian-registered boat in Florida. You’ll be exempted if you are simply en route to Cuba via the U.S.

If travelling by boat to Cuba from the US:

  • Make sure to know the regulation related to docking and port controls
  • Expect thorough search and interrogations

You should carry an international driving permit.

International Driving Permit

Traffic accidents

Traffic accidents have led to arrest and detentions of Canadians in the past.

Accidents resulting in death or injury are treated as crimes. The onus is on the driver to prove innocence. If you’re found to bear responsibility in a traffic accident resulting in serious injury or death, you may face up to 10 years in prison.

If you’re involved in an accident:

  • don’t leave the scene
  • don’t move your vehicle
  • call the police

While car insurance is mandatory for foreign drivers and foreign-registered vehicles, it's not for Cuban citizens. As a result, most local drivers don't carry a car insurance. You shouldn’t expect compensation for vehicle damage or personal injury from a Cuban driver following a car accident.

Vehicle rentals

Car insurance coverage in Cuba differs from that in Canada.

Rental agencies are government-controlled. If you’re found to be at fault in an accident, the rental agency will nullify your coverage and seek compensation to cover the cost of repairs.

Cuban authorities can prohibit you from leaving the country unless the rental agency receives payment or until all claims associated with an accident are settled.

Contract agreements don’t cover occasional drivers. As a result, the signatory is responsible for all people driving the vehicle.

  • Be cautious if you rent a vehicle in Cuba
  • Avoid renting a scooter; thieves target them and you may be responsible for the cost of its replacement
  • Make sure to obtain a receipt when returning a rental vehicle

The currency of Cuba is the Cuban peso (CUP).

Credit cards issued by U.S. financial institutions or affiliated with U.S. banks are not accepted in Cuba.

Canadian credit cards are increasingly accepted at restaurants and hotels. However, the system is unreliable and bank cards may not work or may stop working without notice.

ATMs are rare and also unreliable. Each withdrawal is limited to 5 000 CUP, when possible.

You may obtain credit card cash advances at banks, hotels or a state-run exchange bureau, but in CUP only.

When travelling to Cuba, you should plan to bring enough currency to cover the duration of your stay. You should also plan for small bank notes to facilitate daily transactions such as, street food, taxis and tips.  

You can easily exchange Canadian and American dollars, as well as euros for CUP at:

  • the money exchange bureaus in Cuba’s international airports
  • major hotels
  • official exchange bureaus

It’s illegal to change money on the street or anywhere else other than authorized entities.

You cannot go through Cuban customs with more than 5 000 CUP.

Hurricane season

Hurricanes usually occur from mid-May to the end of November. During this period, even small tropical storms can quickly develop into major hurricanes.

These severe storms can put you at risk and hamper the provision of essential services. You could face serious safety risks during a hurricane.

If you decide to travel to a coastal area during the hurricane season:

  • be prepared to change your travel plans on short notice, including cutting short or cancelling your trip
  • stay informed of the latest regional weather forecasts
  • carry emergency contact information for your airline or tour operator
  • follow the advice and instructions of local authorities
  • Tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, typhoons and monsoons
  • Large-scale emergencies abroad
  • Active storm tracking and hurricane watches and warnings – U.S. National Hurricane Center

Rainy season

The rainy season extends from April to October.

Seasonal flooding can hamper overland travel and reduce the delivery of essential services. Roads may become impassable due to mudslides and landslides. Bridges, buildings, and infrastructure may be damaged.


Cuba is located in an active seismic zone.

Earthquakes may occur. Even minor earthquakes can cause significant damage.

In the event of an earthquake:

  • monitor local media to stay informed of the evolving situation
  • follow the instructions of local authorities, including evacuation orders
  • Earthquakes – What to Do?
  • Latest earthquakes  - U.S. Geological Survey

Local services

In case of emergency, dial:

  • police: 106
  • medical assistance: 104
  • firefighters: 105

Consular assistance

Guardalavaca, Varadero

For emergency consular assistance, call the Embassy of Canada to Cuba, in Havana, and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.

The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.

The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, expressed or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.

If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.

Learn more about consular services .

Risk Levels

  take normal security precautions.

Take similar precautions to those you would take in Canada.

  Exercise a high degree of caution

There are certain safety and security concerns or the situation could change quickly. Be very cautious at all times, monitor local media and follow the instructions of local authorities.

IMPORTANT: The two levels below are official Government of Canada Travel Advisories and are issued when the safety and security of Canadians travelling or living in the country or region may be at risk.

  Avoid non-essential travel

Your safety and security could be at risk. You should think about your need to travel to this country, territory or region based on family or business requirements, knowledge of or familiarity with the region, and other factors. If you are already there, think about whether you really need to be there. If you do not need to be there, you should think about leaving.

  Avoid all travel

You should not travel to this country, territory or region. Your personal safety and security are at great risk. If you are already there, you should think about leaving if it is safe to do so.

Visa Cuba - Logo

The Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form Explained.

Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form

This article explains the information you should have at hand when completing the Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form online at, eligibility criteria, and some additional common questions concerning the application process and delivery of your Cuba Tourist Card


Standard Service Priority Service International Delivery

Who needs to fill out the Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form?

Everyone travelling to Cuba for tourism purposes needs to complete the Cuba Tourist Visa Application form at

UK passport holders and EU citizens are required to purchase a tourist card in order to clear Cuban customs at the point of entry (airport, ports, etc.)

A few nationalities are exempt from Cuban visas, which appear listed on the FAQs section of our website .

The Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form is for tourism only . If you are travelling as a journalist, on business, to visit family or any other category you should not use Visa Cuba’s ä Application form. Instead, the Cuban consulate should be contacted for more information and appointments.

Is the Tourist Visa Application Form online only?

The safest and fastest way to complete the Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form in online from our website –

However, if you’d like to apply in person, feel free to make an appointment and visit our offices in Crystal Palace (Foresters Hall, 25-27 Westow Street, London, SE19 3RY)

If you are having difficulties completing the tourist card application form on a computer and travelling to London is not an option, we’d recommend you seek assistance from a family member, friend, or trusted colleague as we are unable at this time to use printed copies of the tourist card application forms or receive payments for our service over the phone.

Is everyone eligible to apply online at

Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form. UK and EU are eligible countries

Almost everyone. We are unable to provide visas to passport holders of the following countries: Afghanistan, Algeria, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, India, Iran, Iraq, Kenya, Libya, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Philippines, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Syria, Tunisia, USA, Yemen and natives of the Fujian Province.

Information you should have at hand to complete the Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form

The Cuba Tourist Visa Application form is very simple and straightforward. The following information should be provided to us for every person travelling to Cuba with you, including infants. 

Here’s the information we’ll need to process and deliver your Cuban Visa:

1. Your personal details, as they appear in your passport

  • Date of Birth
  • Citizenship
  • Country of Residence
  • Passport Number

This is the information we need to validate your eligibility to obtain a Cuba Tourist Visa

2. Your departure date

This information we need essentially to determine how soon you need your Tourist Card delivered to your designated address. For instance, if you are travelling within the next two weeks and chose our standard service, the risk of you not getting the visa on time is too high, therefore our system will upgrade you to priority service automatically.

3. Delivery Options

Your Cuba Tourist Card will be delivered via Royal Mail. We provide our clients several delivery options:

  • Royal Mail First Class, which is included on our price and takes about a week to reach you (usually less than that)
  • First Class Signed For, which costs £2 but allows you to track your delivery and requires a signature for the visa to be delivered.
  • Special Delivery, which costs £7 but ensures you receive your Cuba Visa the next working day.

International deliveries are handled by DHL and cost £40 Or you can choose at this stage our Office collection service. If you choose this option, you’ll need to get in touch with us to arrange a suitable collection time and date.

4. Billing Address, only if different from the delivery address.

5. payment details, which are safely processed by reputed provider paysafe., apply for your cuba tourist visa, how soon will i receive my cuba tourist card after completing the cuba tourist visa application form .

Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form. Delivery

Depending on how soon you’ll need your Cuba Tourist Card, you can choose two levels of service:

Standard . We aim to process your application and post your tourist card within five days. 

Priority : We process and post your application on the same day, provide your Cuba Tourist Visa Application Form reaches us before 2pm on a working day (Mon-Fri)

Then you can choose how fast you’d want your delivery:

First Class, and First Class Signed For typically take up to 7 days for the Tourist Card to reach you.

With Special Delivery, you’d receive your Tourist Card on the next working day following your application. 

For office collection, it is often up to how soon you can come to our office. Exceptionally we might not be able to confirm your chosen date, but more often than not we are available and happy to help.

For international deliveries is a bit trickier to calculate. You should check DHL’s website for estimated delivery times between the UK and your country of residence.

The table below can help you calculate the most convenient option based on price and processing and delivery times:

Can I apply for multiple entries using this Cuba Visa Application Form?

Cuban Tourist Cards are single-entry, valid for stay of up to 30 days in Cuba. So, if you are entering, then leaving, then returning to Cuba, you must purchase a Cuba tourist card for each individual entry into Cuba. 

For instance, you’ve booked a holiday to Cuba and Costa Rica with a tailor-made holiday specialist like . You’ll spend 3 days in Havana, then head to Costa Rica for 7 nights, then back to Cuba.

In this case, you must apply and obtain two Cuba Tourist Cards. One for each entry. 

If you travel to Cuba and for any reason need to stay more than 30 days, you can request an extension locally for a further 30 days. But only once.


Select the type of visa you will need. Pink visas are required for those travellers beginning their journey in the US to Cuba . For those who travel from the Rest of the World to Cuba , they must opt for a green visa .

Choose this option if you are arriving from any country, except the USA

USA flag

Choose this option if you are travelling to Cuba from or via any US airport


Visa Cuba is not only official partners with the Cuban Consulate. We are the UK’s oldest and best reviewed Cuba Visa application service. We take pride in our flawless review record with independent review services. No fake news. Only authentic reviews from verified customers


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cuba travel visa

  • Valid for non US citizens.
  • Must be traveling to Cuba from non US airports
  • Valid for single entry and up to 90 day visits

cuba travel visa

  • Valid for US citizens.
  • Valid for non-US citizens traveling to Cuba from US airports
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The Cuban Tourist Visa Experience: 10 Steps You Need to Know Before You Go

An old couple with their four luggage, looking at the ocean.

Cuba…the Caribbean gem renowned for its colorful history and captivating dance and dining culture, beckons travelers from around the world.

However, for U.S. citizens, embarking on a journey to Cuba can still be quite daunting, due to unique travel restrictions.

  • U.S citizens can visit cuba under 12 categories of travel.
  • There are different types of visit visas - the Green Visa and the Pink Visa - and which type you need will depend on certain factors.
  • A green card is cheaper than a pink card. You will need to also factor in the delivery cost of the card.
  • These cards allow 90 day stays in Cuba and one single entry.
  • ― Can a U.S. Citizen Visit Cuba as a Tourist?
  • ― Can a non-U.S. Citizen Visit Cuba as a Tourist?
  • ― What are the Categories for Travel to Cuba and How do I Qualify?
  • ― Knowing the Difference: Which Cuba Tourist Card Do I Need?
  • ― The Nuts and Bolts: What is the Cost of a Cuba Tourist Card and When Will I Receive It?
  • ― How Long Can I Stay in Cuba with a Cuba Tourist Card?
  • ― Easy Tourist Card: Your One-Stop Shop for All Your Cuba Travel Needs

While traveling through Cuba can be a memorable adventure, just getting to this iconic Caribbean island can be quite the adventure as well.

But if you plan ahead and do the right research, your journey to this magnificent country will be one that you will never forget nor regret.

Can a U.S. Citizen Visit Cuba as a Tourist?

Visiting Cuba as a U.S. citizen has had a complex history, shaped by ever-evolving regulations and diplomatic relations.

Keeping abreast of the current situation at any given time in history can feel overwhelming and it’s always important to read the most up-to-date requirements before you begin your travel plans.

Sites like the U.S. State Department or reputable online Cuban visa websites can help you stay apprised of the current situation and aware of the most recent changes to any regulations.

Here is a brief historical timeline of recent governing restrictions and allowances for travel to Cuba for U.S. citizens:

  • 1960: Diplomatic relations between the U.S. and the Cuban government begin to deteriorate.
  • 1962: The U.S. imposes a full embargo on trade with Cuba.
  • 1977: The U.S. allows travel to Cuba for academic, religious, and journalistic purposes.
  • 1982: Travel for educational purposes expands.
  • 2000: Travel for “people-to-people” exchanges increases.
  • 2004: The Bush administration tightens travel restrictions for Cuban-Americans and Cuban citizens.
  • 2009: President Obama eases restrictions on family travel and remittances to Cuba.
  • 2014: Under President Obama, regulations are further relaxed, allowing for more general travel categories.
  • 2017: The Trump administration reinstates some restrictions on travel to Cuba.
  • 2020: New rules limit non-family travel to Cuba under the “Support for the Cuban People” category.
  • 2021: The U.S. State Department returns Cuba to its list of state sponsors of terrorism, and travel restrictions and rules continue to evolve, with varying levels of enforcement.
  • 2022: The White House lifts some restrictions on the island, including by expanding U.S. flights into the country, re-establishing a family reunification program, increasing visa processing, and lifting the remittance cap for families.
  • 2023: Travel to and from Cuba continues to improve and more U.S. tourists visit the island than have in decades, though they must do so with the appropriate Cuban visa and other documents prepared beforehand.

Despite past challenges, it is now more possible than it has been for decades for U.S. citizens to visit Cuba, as long as all your documents are in order.

Can a non-U.S. Citizen Visit Cuba as a Tourist? 

When it comes to traveling to Cuba, it’s not just U.S. citizens who have the opportunity to explore this vibrant destination. Non-U.S. citizens from around the world can also visit Cuba for tourism purposes.

Check Passport Validity: Ensure that your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your planned departure date from Cuba. Many countries require this for international travel. 

Select a Travel Category:  Determine the purpose of your trip to Cuba. While most non-U.S. citizens can visit for tourism, it’s essential to understand the specific category you fall under, such as tourism, family visits, cultural exchange, etc.

Obtain a Green Tourist Card:  If you’re not a U.S. citizen and are traveling from a country outside the United States, you’ll typically need to obtain a Green Tourist Card, also known as a   Cuban Tourist Card  or Visa. You can acquire it online with us or through airlines, travel agencies, or the Cuban Embassy in your home country.


  • Ensure Travel Insurance: Cuban authorities require all travelers to have valid travel health insurance that covers any potential medical expenses or medical evacuation during their stay in Cuba. Make sure to carry proof of your insurance coverage.
  • Obtain a Green Tourist Card: If you're not a U.S. citizen and are traveling from a country outside the United States, you'll typically need to obtain a Green Tourist Card, also known as a Cuban Tourist Card or Visa. You can acquire it online with us or through airlines, travel agencies, or the Cuban Embassy in your home country.
  • Complete the Application : Fill out the necessary application forms for the Green Tourist Card, and ensure you have all required documentation, such as a valid passport and travel insurance.
  • Pay the Fee: Pay the fee associated with the Green Tourist Card application. The cost may vary depending on your location and issuing authority.
  • Receive Your Green Tourist Card: Once your application is approved, you will receive your Green Tourist Card, which is typically valid for a single entry and allows for a stay of up to 90 days in Cuba.
  • Travel to Cuba: Finally, embark on your journey to Cuba and enjoy your trip. Make sure to adhere to the permitted duration of your stay to avoid any legal issues.

These steps provide a general overview of the process for non-U.S. citizens to travel to Cuba for tourism or other permitted purposes. Be sure to check with the Cuban Embassy or relevant authorities in your home country for the most up-to-date information and requirements.

Whether you are traveling from the United States or another country, Easy Tourist Card was born to simplify the Cuba visa application process and ensure compliance with requirements.

What are the Categories for Travel to Cuba and How do I Qualify?

Foreign nationals can visit Cuba for tourism, but the rules and restrictions vary for American citizens. Until 2014, Cuba’s travel restrictions posed challenges for Americans, but President Obama initiated significant changes.

The objective was to eliminate the need for specific licenses, replacing them with more accessible general licenses. The Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) created general licenses for 12 categories of travel.

The 12 categories of U.S.-approved travel to Cuba encompass a broad spectrum of purposes:

  • Visiting Family: Travel to Cuba is permitted for visits to close relatives, including blood relatives, relatives by marriage, or adopted family members, within specific generational limits.
  • Official Government Business: Individuals engaged in official business for the U.S. government, foreign governments, or intergovernmental organizations involving the U.S. government can travel to Cuba under this category.
  • Journalism: Access is granted for journalistic activities, supporting both experienced journalists and technical personnel.
  • Research and Meetings: Travelers can engage in research within their field of expertise or attend professional meetings and conferences.
  • Educational Purposes: While not for attending universities, this category allows participation in educational activities, catering to both students and professors.
  • Public Performances, Workshops, Clinics, Exhibits, and Athletic Competitions: Artists, performers, and sports enthusiasts can visit Cuba for their respective activities.
  • Religious Purposes: Religious organizations, along with their staff and members, are eligible if engaged in full-time religious activities.
  • Support for the Cuban People: Independent organizations promoting democracy transition and individuals/non-governmental organizations aiding Cuban civil society’s interests are included.
  • Humanitarian Projects: This category encompasses a range of sub-categories, including medical care, environmental projects, educational training, adult literacy, and small-scale enterprise development, among others.
  • Private Foundations Activities or Research for Educational Institutes: Travelers can collect non-commercial information in Cuba for educational purposes.
  • Exportation, Importation, and Transmission of Information or Informational Materials: Pertaining to the publishing, music, and film industries.
  • Export: Limited to authorized export transactions.

Most US citizens visit Cuba under the “Support for the Cuban People” license and use their taxi and restaurant receipts as proof of their support. If your travel purpose doesn’t align with these categories, a separate Cuban visa will be required to cross into Cuba. It’s best to work with a knowledgeable Cuba visa online agency who can make sure you’ve chosen the correct category and that all your paperwork has been completed appropriately.

Knowing the Difference: Which Cuba Tourist Card Do I Need?

When it comes to planning your trip to Cuba, understanding the distinction between the two types of Cuba Tourist Cards is essential. 

These cards, known as the Green Cuba Tourist Card and the Pink Cuba Tourist Card, cater to different categories of travelers.

Let’s delve into the details of each, ensuring you select the right one for your journey.

A sample Cuban Visa with watermark and green background

The Green Cuba Tourist Card:

This variant of the Cuba Tourist Card is designated for U.S. citizens and non-U.S. citizens who are flying from outside the United States.

If you’re not an American citizen and your travel originates outside the U.S., the Green Tourist Card is the one you’ll need.

It grants you access to Cuba and facilitates your stay, allowing you to explore the island’s rich culture and landscapes.

The Pink Cuba Tourist Card:

If you are a U.S. citizen or anyone who is traveling from the United States, the Pink Cuba Tourist Card is the appropriate choice.

This card is specifically designed to accommodate those who are traveling to Cuba from United States soil as well as for Americans, regardless of where their travel originates.

It plays a crucial role in ensuring compliance with U.S. regulations while enabling you to experience the unique charm of Cuba.

A sample Cuban Visa with watermark and pink background

The Nuts and Bolts: What is the Cost of a Cuba Tourist Card and When Will I Receive It?

Now that you understand a bit more about why you need a Cuba tourist visa and which type you need to apply for, let’s look at a few more important details that will be part of your overall Cuba visa process:

The Cost of a Cuban Visa 

The cost of a Cuban visa can vary depending on several factors, including your nationality, the method of application, and the specific travel agency or airline you choose.

If you choose to apply for a visa through our website at Easy Tourist Card, the fees are as follows:

Pink Tourist Card – 100 USD

Green Tourist Card – 40 USD

(Note: Shipping your tourist card can range in price from 30 USD to 60 USD depending on your country of residence.)

It’s important to note that while the visa fee itself is a significant part of the cost, there may be additional fees associated with the application process, such as insurance fees or rush delivery charges, depending on the method you choose.

If you elect to use us as your Cuba visa online processing site, your total price will be clear before you checkout.

A photo of bills, pennies and uncapped pen.

The Processing Time for a Cuban Visa

The processing time for a Cuba Visa can also vary, depending on what route you take to get your tourist card.

However, if you choose to use us to process your visa, you might have the option to expedite the process and receive your Cuba Visa sooner, possibly even in one day, depending on where you’re traveling from or your nationality. 

As with most travel plans, it’s advisable to apply for your Cuba Visa well in advance of your travel date to allow for any unexpected delays.

A visa application form with a black ball pen and a passport over it.

How Long Can I Stay in Cuba with a Cuba Tourist Card?

The duration of your stay in Cuba with a Cuba tourist card depends on several factors, including your nationality and the type of tourist card you hold. 

An ancient city with old houses and streets.

In most cases, travelers can stay in Cuba for up to 90 days with a standard Cuba tourist card.

It’s essential to note that Cuban authorities have made it clear that the clock starts ticking from the moment you enter Cuba. You must depart Cuba before your authorized stay expires to avoid any overstay complications.

Additionally, your Cuba tourist card is typically valid for a single-entry trip.

If you plan to leave Cuba during your visit and return, you will need to obtain a new tourist card upon re-entry.

If your travel plans involve a more extended stay or you are planning to conduct certain types of business, you may need to explore alternative visa options beyond the standard tourist card.

Regardless of your intended duration in Cuba, it’s advisable to check the latest visa requirements and regulations before traveling to ensure a trouble-free visit to this vibrant island nation.

Easy Tourist Card: Your One-Stop Shop for All Your Cuba Travel Needs

In the realm of Cuba travel, navigating visa requirements and regulations can be somewhat complex, but we can help alleviate that.

With comprehensive support, guidance, and a user-friendly online platform , Easy Tourist Card offers a convenient one-stop solution for all your Cuba travel needs.

From securing the right Cuba tourist card to providing essential insights and assistance, we are a committed partner in making sure your Cuban adventure is memorable for all the right reasons.

A female tourist holding a card while waiting on a sideway.

Whether you’re a first-time traveler or a seasoned explorer, Easy Tourist Card is here to ensure that your experience in Cuba is filled with cultural discoveries, breathtaking landscapes, and unforgettable moments.

Leave the complexities behind and embrace the allure of Cuba with confidence, knowing that Easy Tourist Card has your back at every step of your journey.

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Cuba Visa Services

Online Cuban Visa Application Quick online application Authorized independent Cuba Visa Seller Processed within 48 hours Expedited delivery available

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Who should apply?

  • U.S. citizens and passport holders
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Orders placed before 12PM PST will be shipped the same business day. If placed after 12PM PST or on a holiday, orders will ship on the next business day. After your payment is authorized and verified your order will be processed and you will receive an email within 24 hours with your FedEx tracking number.

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Cuba visa or travel card - which one do I need?

When you plan a trip to Cuba, the first thing that you should concern yourself with is documentation. You need a visa to enter Cuba, except if you are a citizen of a visa-exempt country. However, the rest of the nationals need either a Cuba visa or a travel card. To determine your eligibility for whichever one, you can use iVisa’s Visa Checker . It all depends on your nationality. The Visa Checker is a tool that gives you all the information you need to know.

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What is the difference between a Cuba visa and a travel card?

As mentioned above, it is all about your nationality. It will determine which document you are eligible for. There are 20 nationalities that cannot apply for a Cuba travel card. If you are one of them, your only option of getting a visa is by visiting a Cuban embassy and applies there. You do not have access to an electronic visa system like most of the nationalities. While the process is tedious and time-consuming, it is your only alternative. At least until Cuba’s visa policy drastically affected by some changes as it has in the past.

The travel card, on the other hand, is one of the easiest documents to obtain. It is also known as a ‘pink card’ or Tourist card. It gives you access to Cuba, and the best thing about it is that you can get it online . Most of the nationalities in the world are eligible for a Cuba Tourist card, and getting it requires about 10 minutes of your time.

How can I apply for a Cuba Tourist card?

Here is where iVisa intervenes. You can use its services to apply online for a Cuba Tourist card . The process is entirely online, and you can get your Tourist card in as little as 24 hours. All you have to do is fill in an application form.

The application form is straightforward. There are two steps you need to complete, and if you need some help, iVisa provides excellent support service day and night. The first step requires you to fill in the blanks with your general information. It also asks you to choose a processing time. Here is where iVisa distinguished itself from other services. It gives you three choices so that you can select the one that best suits your needs:

  • Standard processing – your application will be processed and your Tourist card delivered in 3 to 5 business days.
  • Rush processing – your Tourist card will arrive within 1 to 3 business days.
  • Super Rush processing – you will have your Cuba Tourist card in 1 business day.

The second step will have you do a quick revision and make the payment. The revision is very important since you cannot correct your application after you submit it. As a result, you will have to go through the process again. As for payment, iVisa accepts multiple means of payment. You can pay with a credit/debit card, a PayPal account, Alipay, or WeChat. After the payment is made, you can submit the application and then wait for the confirmation letter that arrives via e-mail. The Cuba Tourist card arrives via a delivery method of your choice in the timeframe selected during step one.

If you use iVisa to apply for a Cuba Tourist card , you will enjoy one of the most accessible visa application processes in existence. The document allows you to enter Cuba only once, and you can stay there up to 30 days. Only Canadian citizens can stay for up to 90 days.

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10 Hardest Countries For Americans To Visit

  • There are many countries Americans can't visit easily; for example, Bhutan's high-value, low-impact tourism policy restricts access due to strict visa policies and costly tourist tax.
  • Turkmenistan's difficult visa requirements and limited tourist infrastructure make it a hassle for American travelers.
  • Libya is off-limits due to ongoing conflict, diplomatic tensions, and minimal visa issuance, hindering American visits.

Unlocking the world's mysteries often leads adventurous souls to remote corners and unfamiliar cultures. Yet, within the allure of exploration, there are a number of countries Americans can't travel to easily for various reasons (they're not necessarily places Americans aren't allowed to visit, but are typically very difficult to do so, or, in some cases, advised against).

Delving into the intricacies of bureaucracy, diplomatic relations, and safety concerns, these countries that are hard for Americans to travel to are formidable challenges for the USA's globe-trotters. Each presents its own unique set of difficulties, from enigmatic regimes and strained diplomatic tensions to war-torn landscapes and hard-to-obtain visas. Curious to learn what these countries are and why they are difficult for Americans to visit? Prepare for a journey through the complexities of international travel as they are unveiled.

The countries that are hard for Americans to visit in this list were compiled by looking at the relations they have with the United States. They are arranged in order of population, with the least populated country first on the list. Each of these are countries difficult to travel to for Americans because of their bilateral relations with the US, or because there is extreme difficulty in meeting visa requirements as a US citizen.

Many of these countries that are hard to travel to as a US citizen are considered unsafe, especially for Americans. As such, visiting those that are deemed unsafe is not advised. Always check and adhere to US Travel Advisories and stay up to date on US Travel Alerts .

10 Friendliest Countries In The World, According To Statistics

There are usually no direct flights to bhutan, and its strict visa and costly tourist tax are challenging.

Traveling to breathtaking Bhutan, the last Shangri-La , proves to be a formidable and costly task. This is due to the nation's commitment to sustainable tourism and cultural preservation. Bhutan strictly regulates tourism through a "high-value, low-impact" policy, requiring visitors to book their trip through authorized tour operators and pay a daily tariff.

Moreover, limited international flights and the exclusive Paro Airport further complicate access to the country. Securing a visa necessitates a pre-arranged itinerary and the accompaniment of a licensed guide, adding layers of bureaucracy and cost. These stringent measures, coupled with Bhutan's remote location in the Himalayas, pose significant hurdles for American travelers wishing to explore this unique destination.

  • Continent: Asia
  • Population: 790,616
  • Relations with the US: Warm, Informal Relations , despite there not being an official relationship established by treaty or agreement.

A scarcely visited communist stronghold in Africa, with cumbersome visa processes

Dubbed the North Korea of Africa for its conservative policies and autocratic governance, Eritrea is almost impregnable to everyone, not just Americans. The U.S. Department of State cautions travelers to Eritrea , citing risks associated with civil unrest, crime, and potential arbitrary detention, dissuading American travelers.

Moreover, obtaining a visa for Eritrea proves to be a cumbersome process, characterized by stringent requirements and lengthy procedures. Additionally, Eritrea's limited transportation infrastructure and remote geographical location further hinder accessibility for American tourists. These collective barriers make venturing to Eritrea a challenging undertaking for Americans, impeding their exploration of this East African country.

  • Continent: Africa
  • Population: 3.79 Million
  • Relations with the US: Challenging . The country has a spotty record for human rights.


A former soviet socialist republic with difficult-to-obtain tourist visas.

Embarking on a journey to see Turkmenistan's many wonders presents obstacles for Americans (and people of other nations, too). Stemming from the country's strict visa requirements and limited tourist infrastructure. Turkmenistan maintains a tightly controlled visa regime , requiring travelers to obtain visas in advance through a Turkmen embassy or consulate, a process that's usually time-consuming.

Furthermore, securing a tourist visa often entails obtaining a letter of invitation from a local sponsor. Additionally, independent travel is almost nonexistent, with tourists usually needing to book guided tours for the duration of their stay. That's not to say there aren't amazing things to do and see in Turkmenistan , but getting there is a hassle. These factors combine to create significant barriers for anyone, including Americans aspiring to explore Turkmenistan's rich history and cultural treasures.

  • Continent : Asia
  • Population: 6.57 Million
  • Relations with the US: Established , but the local regime remains questionable.

Turkmenistan is run by an authoritarian government. While there are friendly relations with the US and there is an embassy established, the powers of the embassy are heavily controlled.

A country in the East that's long been in conflict with the US

For Americans, visiting Libya remains an unattainable dream due to many factors. Foremost among these obstacles are severe security risks stemming from ongoing conflict and political instability sparked by the 2011 Libyan Civil War . The U.S. Department of State maintains a Level 4 travel advisory , strongly cautioning against all travel to Libya due to these dangers.

Moreover, diplomatic relations between the United States and Libya are strained, further complicating matters for American travelers. Visa issuance to Americans is virtually non-existent, as the Libyan government imposes strict restrictions and requires rare, difficult-to-obtain approvals. With these formidable barriers in place, Americans face significant challenges attempting to visit Libya, which is a shame because the country is home to some truly impressive ancient ruins.

  • Population: 6.94 Million
  • Relations with the US: Strained . Embassies are established, but the country's history as a supporter of terrorism casts a long shadow over bilateral relations.

A communist stronghold in the Caribbean with diplomatic tensions and trade embargoes with the US

Traveling to Cuba to see its hidden treasures presents a unique set of challenges for Americans, largely due to decades-long diplomatic tensions and trade embargoes between the two countries . While travel to Cuba has become more accessible in recent years, Americans are still subject to specific restrictions. Most notably, travel to Cuba for tourism purposes remains prohibited under U.S. law, necessitating compliance with one of twelve approved categories, such as educational or cultural exchanges.

Additionally, Americans must navigate the complex process of obtaining a visa or travel authorization, often involving paperwork and additional fees. Despite the allure of Cuba's vibrant culture and historical sites, these regulatory barriers continue to hinder seamless travel for Americans.

  • Continent: North America/Caribbean
  • Population: 11.18 Million
  • Relations With the US: Limited engagement . Economic sanctions remain in place, straining regular relations.

10 Unfriendliest Cities In The World That People Love To Visit

North korea, one of the last communist countries in the world with ongoing political tensions with the us.

North Korea stands as a fortress of secrecy, closed off to much of the world, including American travelers. Travel to North Korea is tightly controlled by the government, with visitors subjected to strict supervision and limited access to the outside world. North Korea's DMZ is one of the most heavily fortified borders in the world , yet some people do visit, despite the associated risks.

Ongoing political tensions between North Korea and the United States further exacerbate the difficulty. Americans who travel to North Korea without acquiring passports validated by the Department of State run the risk of arrest and long-term detention. As such, the elusive allure of North Korea remains largely inaccessible to American tourists.

  • Population: 26.2 Million
  • Relations with the US: Hostile

Once a stable country, it's now difficult to obtain entry permits and there are dangers from the Syrian Civil War

Syria is another one of the unsafe countries for Americans to visit. It presents numerous obstacles for Americans, primarily due to the security risks, and diplomatic tensions. The U.S. Department of State has issued a Level 4 travel advisory , urging Americans to avoid all travel to Syria due to the ongoing Syrian Civil War, which includes a high threat of terrorism, civil unrest, and armed conflict.

Additionally, the Syrian government imposes strict visa regulations , making it exceedingly difficult for Americans to obtain entry permits. With the absence of consular services and the volatile security situation, visiting Syria remains hazardous and virtually inaccessible for American travelers. Still, despite the unrest in Syria, the country has some truly beautiful places and fascinating old ruins.

  • Population: 23.9 Million
  • Relations with the US: Strained due to sanctions and certain actions by the Syrian state.

Once the richest country in South America, crime, civil unrest, and strained diplomatic relationships with the US make visiting harder

Visiting Venezuela as an American poses significant hurdles due to multiple factors. Firstly, the U.S. Department of State has issued a Level 4 travel advisory , strongly discouraging travel due to safety concerns like crime and civil unrest. Additionally, diplomatic tensions between the United States and Venezuela further complicate matters , leading to almost no consular assistance and a lack of diplomatic representation for American travelers.

Moreover, obtaining a visa to enter Venezuela is notoriously difficult for Americans, with stringent requirements and bureaucratic procedures enforced by Venezuelan authorities. These combined factors currently make visiting Venezuela a daunting prospect for American tourists.

  • Continent: South America
  • Population: 29.20 Million
  • Relations with the US: Strained . The US maintains that the sitting Venezuelan government was not elected democratically and recognizes the previously elected assembly from 2015 as the legitimate governmental body.

This Country Was Just Ranked The Friendliest In The World

Hard-to-get-visas, political tensions, and banned independent travel for american tourists make visiting a challenge.

Iran presents a tapestry of culture, history, and politics, some of which render it a challenging destination for American tourists. Iran and America have had strained diplomatic relations for decades due to the 1979 Iranian Revolution and sanctions that followed. Diplomatic relations further weakened during Donald Trump's presidency .

Obtaining a visa to enter Iran is a lengthy and unpredictable process. After all of that? US citizens are banned from independent traveling in Iran. All travel must be part of an organized tour led by a government-approved guide. The US Department of State still warns that US citizens should not travel to Iran for any reason , stating that many US citizens have been wrongfully detained. These factors, combined with the intricacies of navigating the Iranian bureaucracy, create significant obstacles for Americans seeking to explore the nation. Both Canada and the US have advised against visiting Iran .

  • Population : 89.6 Million
  • Relations With The US: Relationship severed in 1979 and not yet reestablished .

The situation with Iran continues to worsen over time, and there's no certainty that American tourists to this area will be safe if they decide to visit. Visiting is not advised.

Saudi Arabia

An ally of the us in the middle east, but cultural clashes and hard-to-obtain visas pose a challenge.

Journeying to Saudi Arabia poses significant difficulties for many, not just Americans, primarily due to the country's stringent visa policies and cultural disparities. Obtaining a visa for leisure travel is usually a complex process , typically requiring sponsorship from a local entity and often limited in availability for non-essential purposes.

Moreover, Saudi Arabia's adherence to conservative Islamic principles dictates strict codes of conduct and dress, which may clash with Western norms and practices. These cultural differences, coupled with the challenges of navigating a foreign bureaucracy, make visiting Saudi Arabia a tricky prospect. However, those restrictions may not last forever, as Saudi Arabia has previously become more open to international tourism .

  • Population: 37.29 Million
  • Relations with the US: Full Diplomatic Relations . Embassies are established in both countries.

10 Hardest Countries For Americans To Visit


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  1. Entry to Cuba: Visas & Travel Requirements · Visit Cuba

    Learn about the visa and entry protocols for different countries and travel categories to Cuba. Find out what items you can bring, what vaccinations you need, and how to get a travel certificate for your pet.

  2. Traveling to Cuba

    Travel to Cuba for tourist activities remains prohibited by statute. However, the Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has issued general licenses for 12 categories of travel. ... To apply for a Cuban visa or for any questions regarding Cuban consular services, please contact the Cuban Embassy in Washington, D.C ...

  3. Cuba International Travel Information

    For travel-specific questions, please see 31 C.F.R. 515.560 and OFAC's Frequently Asked Questions. Visit the Embassy of Cuba website for the most current visa information. Cuba requires visitors to have non-U.S. medical insurance, which is usually included in airline ticket prices on flights originating in the United States.

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    Welcome to the Online Visa Application System of the Republic of Cuba. Please, find the country where you are to fill out your application. Country where you are. Algeria. Angola. Antigua and Barbuda. Argentina. Australia. Austria. Azerbaiyán. Bahamas. Barbados. Belarús. Bélgica.

  6. Cuba Visas: Cuba Tourist Visa Guide, From A Pro [2024]

    Delta: The Cuban tourist visa from Delta costs $85 and can be purchased during check-in or at your departure gate. Copa Airlines: The Cuban tourist visa from Copa Airlines costs either $20 or $30, depending on your departure airport. Air Canada: Air Canada is an airline that includes the cost of the Cuba visa in the price of its ticket.

  7. Visa requirements for visiting Cuba

    Learn how to get a Cuba Tourist Card, also known as a visa, for your trip to Cuba. Find out which countries need one, how much it costs, and what to do if you're an American traveler.

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    Visitors to Cuba must obtain a visa before travel or a tourist card from one of the Cuban diplomatic missions, travel agencies or authorized airlines unless they come from one of the visa exempt countries. [1] All visitors, including those with Cuban nationality residing outside Cuba, must hold valid return tickets and proof of medical insurance.

  9. Cuba Visa Requirements

    The required documents when applying for a Cuba Tourist visa include your passport, health insurance, and a valid travel ticket. The Cuba tourist visa is also known as a Cuba Tourist Card. If you are from a Cuba-visa required country, you have to get the tourist card before you travel. You can get the Tourist Card at a Cuban consulate, through ...

  10. Passport & Visa Information to travel to Cuba

    Visas. You need a valid passport with at least 6 months validity remaining to enter Cuba. Most countries also require a visa to enter Cuba. Visas for Cuba are required by all nationals referred to in the chart below. The required tourist visa, known as a tourist card, allows the holder to stay in the Cuba for 90 days and is valid for a single ...

  11. How to Travel to Cuba If You Are an American

    Using the Havana Embassy. The U.S. Embassy in Havana reopened in August 2015, as full diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States have been restored. Although the relationship is now strained thanks to the Trump administration, this embassy will still help American citizens in Cuba in a variety of different ways.

  12. Cuba Visa Guide: Types, Requirements, Exemptions in 2024

    Cuba visa is a document issued by the Cuba government, permitting the holder to enter, stay, or leave Cuba for a specified period. Cuba visa ranks 222 in terms of ease of access and allows travelers to visit 19 countries under specific conditions. Besides facilitating international travel, Cuba visa serves as an official authorization that attests to the holder's permission to enter Cuba.

  13. Is it Legal for U.S. Citizens to Travel to Cuba?

    However, the Trump administration made it significantly harder to visit Cuba. During his time in office, President Trump enacted more than 200 measures against Cuba, which included limiting what Cuban airports flights from the U.S. could fly into, banning cruises from stopping in Cuba, and eliminating the most common visa category under which U.S. citizens planned legal visits to Cuba (known ...

  14. Cuba Tourist Card: 5 Ways to Get the Cuba Tourist Visa in 2023

    Buy it From Your Country's Cuban Embassy or Consulate. This is the hardest way to buy the Cuba Tourist Visa since you have to go in person with the necessary paperwork. Price varies depending on the embassy, but you can expect to pay between $35 and $75 for the card. 4. Buy it from your travel agency.

  15. Visiting Cuba from the USA in 2023: Your Cuban Visa and all the travel

    Here's what you need to know: Travel by US citizens remains largely allowed and legal; Yes, Americans can still travel to Cuba! People-to-people travel is the only way for Americans to visit Cuba and gives you an opportunity to discover Cuba through its people and from a local perspective.

  16. Cuba Tourist Card

    If you apply at a Cuban consulate, the Cuba visa fees tend to range from $20-$75. You must pay either in cash or through bank transfer. However, check the consulate's website to be sure of their required payment method. Private companies which offer Cuba visas will have additional fees for the service, as do airports.

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    A tourist visa (officially called a tarjeta de turista or tourist card) is a requirement for virtually every foreigner entering Cuba for tourism or for a non-specific reason (as opposed to traveling for journalism, business, government related activities, etc).. So if you're a U.S. citizen planning a trip to Cuba under the Support for the Cuban People category, you're required by the Cuban ...

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    The Cuban visa is valid for a single entry and allows the holder to stay in Cuba for 30 days. InsightCuba provides Cuban visas to all its registered guests. Please note: each package includes one visa per person. Replacement visas are $75. The Cuban visa is a two-part card. In the past, Cuban immigration officials would take one half upon ...

  19. 20 things to know before going to Cuba

    To enter Cuba, all visitors need to present a completed tourist card. It's usually available through your airline (ask when booking) and included in the price of your ticket. If not, you can purchase one through a Cuban travel agency. Costs range from US$50 to US$85. Citizens of 20 African and Asian countries require a formal visa to enter Cuba.

  20. Travel advice and advisories for Cuba

    Visas. Tourist visa: required Family visa: required Business visa: required. Tourist card. Canadian tourists travelling to Cuba need a visa, known as tourist card. The tourist card allows you to stay in Cuba for up to 90 days.

  21. Visa Cuba

    The Cuba Tourist Visa Application form is very simple and straightforward. The following information should be provided to us for every person travelling to Cuba with you, including infants. Here's the information we'll need to process and deliver your Cuban Visa: 1. Your personal details, as they appear in your passport.

  22. Cuban Tourist Visa Guide

    The Cost of a Cuban Visa. The cost of a Cuban visa can vary depending on several factors, including your nationality, the method of application, and the specific travel agency or airline you choose. If you choose to apply for a visa through our website at Easy Tourist Card, the fees are as follows: Pink Tourist Card - 100 USD.

  23. Cuba Visa Services

    If you need an urgent visa for your upcoming travel to Cuba, we will gladly assist you. Please email us with Emergency Visa in the subject line and will contact you as soon as possible. Consular services for Cuban-born U.S. citizens. Passports; Prorrogas; HE-11 visas; Specialist visas;

  24. Cuba visa or travel card

    You need a visa to enter Cuba, except if you are a citizen of a visa-exempt country. However, the rest of the nationals need either a Cuba visa or a travel card. To determine your eligibility for whichever one, you can use iVisa's Visa Checker. It all depends on your nationality. The Visa Checker is a tool that gives you all the information ...

  25. 10 Hardest Countries For Americans To Visit

    Most notably, travel to Cuba for tourism purposes remains prohibited under U.S. law, necessitating compliance with one of twelve approved categories, such as educational or cultural exchanges ...