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Poetalan 10-18-2017 01:50 AM

Visa for Cuba
I'm flying to Miami from Sydney early December & picking up my son's catamaran (Gemini 105)
Having trouble getting a visa for Cuba. My plan was to sail from Miami to Havana mid December. The Cuban Embassy here in Australia won't issue me a visa because I'm sailing in from USA & the Cuban Embassy in Washington say it's illegal to issue me a visa. Is there any way into Cuba by boat from USA?

PrisonerOfUSA 11-02-2017 02:17 PM

I remember reading in the past that people would just sail to Cuba from the USA without telling anyone. When they got to Cuba they would not stamp their US passports so the US citizens wouldn't get in trouble for having visited Cuba. I don't remember any discussion about a Visa. Are you a US citizen?

Auzzee 11-02-2017 06:15 PM

Visiting Cuba by private vessel is becoming less difficult and, in many cases, it is becoming routine. There are several rallies and races now on the books between Miami and Hemmingway Marina. There are some requirements which must be met (generally regarding positive cultural or educational worth), but these would seem not to be overly strict.
The main concern at the moment for American citizens, is the prevarication being displayed by the US President. However, if you are not an American citizen, the problem largely doesn't concern America.
Several of my friends (Mostly US citizens) have sailed to Cuba in the past two years. Some in races, some as cruisers.
Let's know how you get on. It is a subject which I am sure will be of interest to many of our members.

PrisonerOfUSA 11-02-2017 07:29 PM

Technically the restriction on visiting Cuba is due to not being allowed to have financial dealings with Cuba, and with purchasing health insurance being required enter, it's practically impossible to legally visit Cuba for a US citizen. Going to Cuba for a race or similar situation and never getting off the boat would then be a different situation.

Auzzee 11-03-2017 02:20 AM

Going to Cuba as an American, particularly as a part of a rally, is the easiest way to visit. Most crew and boats spend at least a week in Cuba and are free to tour Havana as they wish. They are not required to remain on the boat. You may find the following article (from 2015) of interest. Additionally, you can obtain valuable information regarding cruising to Cuba from the Sarasota Sailing Club.
Unfortunately, those visiting from the USA must buy 'special' Cuban currency which is more expensive than usual Cuban currency. If there is a foreigner (ie. non-American) on board, monetary exchanges are somewhat less exploitative.
The travel insurance requirements do not pose a significant problem as the following official policy explanation shows: Travel Medical Insurance Requirements by Country
Travelers who arrive on the island of Cuba without travel health insurance, or with an invalid travel medical plan, will be able to buy a policy from a Cuban insurance company at the airport, port, or marina where they enter the country.
Travel health insurance recommendations by the visiting country include the following:
For British visitors, the coverage purchased in Cuba is likely to be less comprehensive than most UK-based policies and could have more expensive premiums.
For Canadian visitors, proof of Canadian provincial health insurance is sufficient for entry, but the provincial plan may only cover a portion of the cost of medical treatment and it will not pay the bill up-front and instead require you to pay up front and then claim for reimbursement. It is therefore recommended that Canadians purchase supplemental health insurance for their visits to Cuba.
U.S. residents who are able to obtain a visa, can purchase an insurance policy before they arrive in Cuba or once they arrive in Cuba (at the airport, port, or marina where they enter the country).
In case of any medical emergency, the Cuban health system guarantees the necessary medical care through a network of polyclinics and hospitals, covering every corner of the island. Primary health care is provided in most hotel facilities.

JohnT 11-11-2017 06:21 AM

Brent Swain 05-23-2019 09:20 PM

I flew into Cuba a couple of years ago with no visa of any kind. They don't stamp your passport, just give a you a paper with the stamp on, which you don't want to lose.
Yanks just drive to Canada, and fly from here. They don't tell Uncle Sam , no problem.
Great place !

Foolicious 09-16-2019 03:07 PM

same question. thanks for sharing!

Brent Swain 09-16-2019 06:56 PM

Wonderful place, wonderful , peaceful people, Very low stress , lowest crime rate anywhere. Great diving, the coral is as it was 50 years ago elsewhere. Great, very affordable restaurant lobster. Ask of no salt, or, like the Kiwis, they salt the hell out of everything, if you don't . Order hamburgueasas de Res , or your hamburger will be ground pork.

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