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Old 01-12-2022, 17:37   #1
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Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

Any one know whatís the current status for us citizen and sailboat entering Cuba at this time. Whatís the procedure and is it viable? Iíwant to sail from Florida to Cuba and then onto Guatemala. Hey thanks for any info you can provide or maybe you can steer me as where to find pertinent current info.
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Old 02-12-2022, 08:10   #2
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

Cuba doesn't care. The United States does. If you go without prior approval you could be subject to fines and prison time when you return to the US. That, of course, is if you get caught. Lot's of people will tell you that the probability of getting caught is very low. Of course, none of the people who tell you that will help with your legal fees or fines if you DO get caught.


For more information, go to travel.state.gov and search for "cuba".
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Old 02-12-2022, 09:12   #3
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

I could be wrong but in my reading it looks like if a person meets one or more of the 12 permitted reasons to travel to Cuba you do not need prior approval. Correct me if Iím wrong.
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Old 02-12-2022, 10:13   #4
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

Right after the towers fell, I sailed into Florida. I had to call homeland security to report my arrival from the Bahamas. They said Ok. Have a safe trip. That was all.

Have things changed?
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Old 02-12-2022, 16:02   #5
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Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

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Originally Posted by tbodine88 View Post
Right after the towers fell, I sailed into Florida. I had to call homeland security to report my arrival from the Bahamas. They said Ok. Have a safe trip. That was all.

Have things changed?


Yes; get the CBP roam app and buy the sticker, and get your guests verified.
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Old 02-12-2022, 16:56   #6
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

You need only two things -
A Cuban Tourist Card which costs around $50usd, and a self-certification statement of the travel purpose, the most common of which is in “support of Cuban population” but no one will ever ask you for the latter. You don’t need prior approval. Been there twice in last 2 years from Florida. Great people, extraordinary poverty
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Old 03-12-2022, 03:25   #7
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Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

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Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post
You need only two things -
A Cuban Tourist Card which costs around $50usd, and a self-certification statement of the travel purpose, the most common of which is in ďsupport of Cuban populationĒ but no one will ever ask you for the latter. You donít need prior approval. Been there twice in last 2 years from Florida. Great people, extraordinary poverty


Been a few years since there. Poverty is everywhere great people are not. My friend is just back sheís days these days it has improved immeasurably
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Old 03-12-2022, 04:11   #8
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

Addison Chan and Nigel Calder have written a very good cruising guide to Cuba. Addison is also active on the Cuba Land and Sea facebook group and there is a wealth of info on there. The issue these days seems to be that marinas, fuel, hotels etc only do business with credit cards and itís tough for an American to get a cc that works in Cuba. There are cash workarounds but youíre not without risk.

https://www.amazon.com/Waterway-Guide-Cuba-2019/dp/099858634X
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Old 03-12-2022, 04:35   #9
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

Where do you get the Cuban tourist card?
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Old 03-12-2022, 07:40   #10
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

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Where do you get the Cuban tourist card?
Tourist card - https://www.cubavisa.uk/

As for money, euros, Canadian dollars or pounds sterling are all widely acceptable although exchange rates vary.
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Old 03-12-2022, 08:24   #11
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

I’m not from the UK so doesn’t look like this tourist card in the above post would work for me. I’m a us citizen on a us registered boat.
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Old 03-12-2022, 09:00   #12
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

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Iím not from the UK so doesnít look like this tourist card in the above post would work for me. Iím a us citizen on a us registered boat.
Itís generic. Follow the directions.
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Old 03-12-2022, 09:08   #13
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

All explained here:

https://visacuba.com/blog/post/every...ut-cuban-visas
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Old 03-12-2022, 09:26   #14
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

It is difficult. It had been easier under Obama, but Trump locked down travel to Cuba, and Biden hasn't eased it.

Yes, you need a Cuban tourist card, but that only covers the Cuban govermnet requirements, not the requirements of the USA.

Best I can tell (I was going to visit early this year but opted not because of the difficulty) you must obtain a license from the OFAC(https://home.treasury.gov/policy-iss...cuba-sanctions). There are several categories to choose from, but because tourism is specifically forbidden, you need to provide an itinerary that shows you will be actually doing the things you are licensed to do there. There are also restrictions on how/where US citizens can spend money there. There are specific lists of how and where you can spend. You need to keep records of all money you spent there.
I have no idea how well or if they will ever check all of this when you get back, but the idea is to make tourism basically impossible for US citizens yet allow specific travel for things that help Cuban citizens.
I have talked to a number of sailors that have gone, none of them legally. And one sailor that was intercepted by the USCG off the coast and escorted away. None of the sailors that I spoke with did it legally. They said that Cuba gave them a visa separate from their passport, so there was no record of them having been there. Travel was not between the US and Cuba, but from other islands.
Anyway, research it carefully, as there is contradicting information, but tourism is illegal, as is spending money there on most things you might want to buy.
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Old 03-12-2022, 09:29   #15
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Re: Entry into Cuba for a USA citizen sailor

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Originally Posted by freshalaska View Post
Iím not from the UK so doesnít look like this tourist card in the above post would work for me. Iím a us citizen on a us registered boat.
For the tourist card, it depends on the country you arrive from. Nationality does not matter. Anyone coming from the USA, regardless of nationality, gets one type of card. Anyone, including a US citizen, arriving from other than the USA, gets another.
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