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Old 04-03-2009, 12:47   #16
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Maybe a dumb question......what is the legality of US citizens making port in cuba I was under the impression that is was not a possibilty or are most of you cruisers from other countries?
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Old 04-03-2009, 12:53   #17
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Gord May...I didn't know you had left wing persuasions. Anyway, Cuba is the at the top of my list as soon as Americans can legally go there (perhaps sooner). Does anyone have or know of American friends who have gone to Cuba and what were the outcomes of their visits?
jim
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Old 04-03-2009, 13:43   #18
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I had this friend once who sailed to cuba and said it was a beautiful country. It is my understanding that its not going to cuba thats illegal its spending money in cuba thats illegal. (for Americans)
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Old 04-03-2009, 14:05   #19
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The US Department of Treasury, Office of foreign assets Control administers the (American) Cuba Sanctions:

Cuba Sanctions:
U.S. Treasury - Sanctions Program Summaries - Cuba
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Old 04-03-2009, 14:36   #20
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"Why do people want to contribute to a Communist Dictatorship?"

Ever been to Canada in the winter? Cuba... No Snow! Who cares who's in charge.
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Old 04-03-2009, 14:39   #21
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There are sailboats reported in Cuba that have their ensign removed and their names and homeports taped. US spies and satellites do no recommend this because it makes their job impossible.

It's also reported that Cuba officials don't stamp the passports if that's requested by the visitor. This practice is much argued by US immigration officials because how are they supposed to find Cuba visitors that way?

Another report: The Bahama's found that many sailboats visit their islands coming from Cuba and going to the US later. They detected a trend and decided to increase their fees to $300.- with great success.

Last report: US spies detected in the Bahama's !!

cheers,
Nick.
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Old 04-03-2009, 14:50   #22
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You can request not to have your passport stamped and that is fine, we chose not to last summer. Although we did obtain our US visa's in Havana at the 'US special interests section'!

US dollars are no longer welcome, you will pay between 10-20% charge on any exchange. best take Euro's or Canadian Dollars.

At the marina in Cienfuegos we were berthed between two American cruisers. Not flying ensigns but also had NOT taped over their boat names. Both had visited Cuba previously and so long as they made another landfall before returning to the USA had experience no problems, and did not anticipate any.

Hotel at Maria la Gorda had maybe 30% USA guests. Met many US citizens both working and vacationing in Cuba. Bought US Bacon in the supermarket!

It's a fascinating country and not at all how I had imagined it prior to our visit. I recommend Dervla Murphy's book: Cuba; The Island that Dared as an excellent read on the current situation in Cuba.
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Old 04-03-2009, 15:29   #23
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As well, credit cards from US based banks were NOT accepted while I was there. Leave the AMEX at home and be sure to get a card from another country. (Hey, I know some guys...)
Met some Americans in Havana who flew to Toronto. Got stamped. Flew to Havana from Toronto. Didn't get stamped and repeated the process upon their return. Looked to US Customs like they spent a couple of weeks in Toronto. The tans in February after a visit to Canada might have been a giveaway but...
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Old 04-03-2009, 15:47   #24
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I love sv/Jedi's take on the situation - I have actually heard from cruising friends of the "spies" writing down names and home ports and using spy satellites to image boat names, etc. - but that was back in the previous administration's tenure. As with everything in the world, politics rules and reality/common sense generally takes a back seat. Hopefully this new administration will slowly work it way through the monumental list of crisis items in the world/USA and maybe get down to Cuba and fix that problem for us. But I wouldn't hold my breath waiting.
- - Currently the law forbids "trading with then enemy" which means spending any money there - and the past administration translated that to simply your being there was considered "trading with the enemy" and periodically applied bureaucratic and legal hassling of cruisers visiting Cuba to "teach them a lesson." Many, many thousands of dollars of legal fees later you might get your boat back or not - if they target you. So it was and still is risky to stick you butt into that situation. Not being legal or constitutional never slowed down the last administration and an awful lot of the lower level bureaucrats from that era are still in place and active so don't expect any lightning change in rules about Cuba. If you can wait a few years you may find the place packed with all of us who are patiently waiting.
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Old 20-03-2009, 12:48   #25
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In the 2009 budget all money for enforcement of the "trading with the enemies" act has been intentionally stripped out. It's the beginning of the end of this policy. Without money for enforcement treasury are forced to immediately reallocate those resources to other projects. Simply put, if that part of the government has no money, it gets dissolved. The lead republican on the foriegn relations committee has stated that the policy has had no tangible benefit to the United States. The democrats are universally opposed. I think we can all start to relax regarding this now.
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Old 20-03-2009, 12:51   #26
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BTW, regarding visiting Cuba from Ragged Island, we've done that travelling the 500 or so miles from Ragged Island to Puerto de Vita eventually to Key West. They beat the Bahamas by a huge margin for prestine beaches and wonderful underwater aquatic life. The people are very friendly and it's an incredibly rewarding trip.
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Old 20-03-2009, 12:56   #27
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Originally Posted by schoonerdog View Post
In the 2009 budget all money for enforcement of the "trading with the enemies" act has been intentionally stripped out. It's the beginning of the end of this policy. Without money for enforcement treasury are forced to immediately reallocate those resources to other projects. Simply put, if that part of the government has no money, it gets dissolved. The lead republican on the foriegn relations committee has stated that the policy has had no tangible benefit to the United States. The democrats are universally opposed. I think we can all start to relax regarding this now.
Thats Great news- though I would only sail there out of the storm season, it seems just about every storms that comes thru hits the island
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Old 21-03-2009, 07:42   #28
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Nobody cares about my left wing liberal persuasion, nor anotherís right-wing reactionary sentiments.
Gord May
I see you are getting your political jab in while chastising others for mentioning politics on our forum.
A more accurate statement would be "Nobody cares about my left wing feelings on the issue, nor another's right wing thoughts".
Now that I got that off my chest I think the embargo on Cuba wrong. With the embargo lifted the comunist regime would not be able to withstand the forces of capitalism and would colapse. If Obama lifts the embargo that would be one decision I would support him on. Even if he does have a (D) after his name Barack Hussein Obama. I would love to visit Cuba one day.
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Old 22-03-2009, 07:29   #29
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typically people go to the Bahamas in December and then take their time cruising down to exumas and the Jumentos by end of February. Then spend a month cruising the coast of Cuba in the March/April time frame and then on to the hurricane holes, Guatemala or the Chesapeake.
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Old 31-03-2009, 21:10   #30
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To All, Good News ! Just heard on the 10 o'clock news that a Bill has been introduced to lift the embargo on travel by us citizens to Cuba !! About time... ! I only hope it goes thru before May 1-May17 .. while I am in Key West for some much needed cruising, I would love to jump across to Cuba .. . I will cross my fingers..
PS. Good Thread..
Regards, MJ
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