Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > Americas > Cuba
Reload this Page >

Travel TO the US from Cuba

Travel TO the US from Cuba

Old Sep 21, 16, 3:04 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: CPH
Programs: SK-EBD
Posts: 1,240
Travel TO the US from Cuba

Even though I am an EU-citizen, I canít fly directly from the US to Cuba for just tourism Ė I have learned from other FF-forums and from a private message from American Airlines.

BUT: What about the other direction? If I travel legally to Cuba from a third country?

It seems straight forward to book online a ticket with a US carrier o/w from Cuba to a US city.

Could I get into trouble with a) Cuban authorities at departure? b) with the US airline? and/or c) with US immigration?
Tango Alpha is offline  
Old Sep 22, 16, 10:04 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Munich, Germany
Posts: 715
as long as you are departing and/or arriving from the USA, you're subject to their jurisdiction, regardless of your nationality... like in any other country as well, as long as you dont have a certain status of imunnity..

this means if you want to fly directly from the US to Cuba, the only legal reasons to do so, 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; and certain authorized export transactions.

(Beach-) holidays do not fall under one of these categories.... each of these categories is well defined describing what is expected to be done... (just cant find it online .-( )

and family visit is easy to check: either you travel on a cuban passport, or having cuban family visa or you can show that you have close relatives living in Cuba...


The Cubans dont care, from where you're coming... it's an US thing..
CubaLibre is offline  
Old Sep 22, 16, 11:04 am
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: CPH
Programs: SK-EBD
Posts: 1,240
Thanks, but I am very well aware of the non-tourist-rule and the 12 exemptions.

Maybe I was unclear in the main text.

Question: Can I travel FROM Cuba TO the US on a US airline - without any special permission?
Tango Alpha is offline  
Old Sep 26, 16, 10:55 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Originally Posted by Tango Alpha View Post
Thanks, but I am very well aware of the non-tourist-rule and the 12 exemptions.

Maybe I was unclear in the main text.

Question: Can I travel FROM Cuba TO the US on a US airline - without any special permission?
afaik, your entry into the US is governed by US law, which does not as yet allow travel for tourism (as you know).

The airline would be the entity which would decide whether you can board or not, so maybe take it up directly with them. (If you are refused entrance on arrival in the US, they are responsible for returning you to point of departure.) The newer carriers like AA are not very well informed though.

Since most flights US-Cuba-US up to this point have been charter (and presumably ROUND TRIP), I don't think there is much precedent for a situation such as you are describing.
Any Cuban residents lucky enough to get a visa to visit the US would also be on a RT flight.
VidaNaPraia is offline  
Old Sep 26, 16, 1:13 pm
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: CPH
Programs: SK-EBD
Posts: 1,240
Originally Posted by VidaNaPraia View Post
The airline would be the entity which would decide whether you can board or not, so maybe take it up directly with them. (If you are refused entrance on arrival in the US, they are responsible for returning you to point of departure.) The newer carriers like AA are not very well informed though.
Thanks.

I will ask AA, which is the airline in question.

Though last time I asked them on their web-site, it took them 14 days to answer...
Tango Alpha is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 3:52 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5
Hi everyone !
I have the same problem with Jet Blue from Fort Lauterdale to Santa Clara. I'm an italian citizen, regularly resident in Italy with a Visa for tourism issued by the Cuba's embassy of Rome. Do you think they will stop me ?
I'm flying back to Italy from L'Havana and you can understand how much is it important..

i wrote an email to jet blue and they answered me:
"customers who aren't U.S. citizens must still fill in the "Reasons for travel to Cuba" section
while booking with us and certify they are authorized to travel to Cuba under the Cuban Assets
Control Regulations.


What can i do in your opinion ? Do i need to change my intinerary ?

Anyone have had troubles in the same experience in Fort Lauterdale ?

Thank you for the assistance
OmeletteOne is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 6:08 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Originally Posted by OmeletteOne View Post
Hi everyone !
I have the same problem with Jet Blue from Fort Lauterdale to Santa Clara. I'm an italian citizen, regularly resident in Italy with a Visa for tourism issued by the Cuba's embassy of Rome. Do you think they will stop me ?
I'm flying back to Italy from L'Havana and you can understand how much is it important..

i wrote an email to jet blue and they answered me:
"customers who aren't U.S. citizens must still fill in the "Reasons for travel to Cuba" section
while booking with us and certify they are authorized to travel to Cuba under the Cuban Assets
Control Regulations.


What can i do in your opinion ? Do i need to change my intinerary ?

Anyone have had troubles in the same experience in Fort Lauterdale ?

Thank you for the assistance
No, you do not have the same problem. Not at all.

To answer some doubts......
Leaving from a US airport, you need a PINK visa, which should cost U$70+. In order to get this visa, you must check one box on a form listing the 12 official reasons for travel to Cuba from the US. Tourism is not one of them.
If you got a visa in Rome, you probably have a GREEN visa, which is the correct one for everyone arriving from outside the US and costs about U$25.
The airline will lol not allow you to board your flight to Cuba without proper documentation.
You present this visa to Cuban authorities when you arrive at your Cuban entry airport.

The return flight to Europe should not be a problem unless it transits in the US, in which case you are again subject to US law. However, US immigration officers on re-entry to the US from Cuba, when presented with the receipt from the machines now used for basic questions, only ask where you have been and possibly how much rum or how many cigars you are bringing in (there is a dollar/quantity limit legally).
VidaNaPraia is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 6:40 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 5
Originally Posted by VidaNaPraia View Post
No, you do not have the same problem. Not at all.

To answer some doubts......
Leaving from a US airport, you need a PINK visa, which should cost U$70+. In order to get this visa, you must check one box on a form listing the 12 official reasons for travel to Cuba from the US. Tourism is not one of them.
If you got a visa in Rome, you probably have a GREEN visa, which is the correct one for everyone arriving from outside the US and costs about U$25.
The airline will lol not allow you to board your flight to Cuba without proper documentation.
You present this visa to Cuban authorities when you arrive at your Cuban entry airport.

The return flight to Europe should not be a problem unless it transits in the US, in which case you are again subject to US law. However, US immigration officers on re-entry to the US from Cuba, when presented with the receipt from the machines now used for basic questions, only ask where you have been and possibly how much rum or how many cigars you are bringing in (there is a dollar/quantity limit legally).


Thank you very much, now i understand... in this case there's no solution, i must change my flight and i can't fly directly from USA to Cuba. (correct, i have the green visa of 25$)
Can i ask a last info ? i've seen the website of Aeromexico and this company allows foreigners to fly to Cuba: a pop-up just say

"In order to search flights to Cuba we need to certify if you are subject to US jurisdiction. Are you:

A United States citizen?
A United States resident?
A person otherwise under U.S. jurisdiction, e.g.
You are buying a flight ticket to Cuba while on U.S. territory
You will begin your travel to Cuba stating in the U.S.


What do you think about that ? Could i use this company instead Jet Blue or it's better anyway to change planning ?
OmeletteOne is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 9:00 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Why do you have to change your flight? Just get the correct PINK visa.

(Try Cuba Travel Services online. They are the current third party provider for American Airlines but serve other individuals as well. It should take just a day or two to receive the visa by mail in the US, from the time they receive your online form and credit card authorization for payment of U$85. )

Note that the US government is not going to ask any questions or ask for proof of the reason you choose for travel (of the 12), so just pick what serves you best. It will just be a box checked on the form, nothing more.
VidaNaPraia is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 2:45 pm
  #10  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: CPH
Programs: SK-EBD
Posts: 1,240
Originally Posted by VidaNaPraia View Post
Note that the US government is not going to ask any questions or ask for proof of the reason you choose for travel (of the 12), so just pick what serves you best. It will just be a box checked on the form, nothing more.
Highly interesting. First time I see anyone telling this.

Had the impression that a very formal paper work with a US agency was needed to obtain one of those 12 permissions. My bad.
Tango Alpha is offline  
Old Sep 27, 16, 3:53 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Originally Posted by Tango Alpha View Post
Highly interesting. First time I see anyone telling this.

Had the impression that a very formal paper work with a US agency was needed to obtain one of those 12 permissions. My bad.
Not since last March when the rules changed.
It's really old news, hon.
VidaNaPraia is offline  
Old Oct 18, 16, 9:21 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Chicago
Programs: United 1P
Posts: 21
Originally Posted by VidaNaPraia View Post
Why do you have to change your flight? Just get the correct PINK visa.

(Try Cuba Travel Services online. They are the current third party provider for American Airlines but serve other individuals as well. It should take just a day or two to receive the visa by mail in the US, from the time they receive your online form and credit card authorization for payment of U$85. )

Note that the US government is not going to ask any questions or ask for proof of the reason you choose for travel (of the 12), so just pick what serves you best. It will just be a box checked on the form, nothing more.
So sounds to me this is really just a "honesty system" without requiring real proof?
kevincl is offline  
Old Oct 18, 16, 11:15 am
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Originally Posted by kevincl View Post
So sounds to me this is really just a "honesty system" without requiring real proof?
The regulations state that you have to keep detailed records of your activities, which cannot include any that could be construed as tourism, for 5 years.
The government of the US apparently has not checked for quite a few years, and no fines or prosecutions have resulted from visits. (This is according to the long-time regular travelers on Thorn Tree.)
VidaNaPraia is offline  
Old Nov 16, 16, 7:16 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: SEA/DEN
Programs: Hostelworld.com Diamond Plated Platinum
Posts: 384
Anyone traveled from Cuba to the US recently with any data points? Trying to do a Central America to Cuba to US itinerary (those Jetblue fares at 100 points +$40 are tempting), and would like to make this work.

Otherwise, roundtrip from Mexico it is!
AJCU is offline  
Old Nov 16, 16, 7:56 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 1,654
Originally Posted by AJCU View Post
Anyone traveled from Cuba to the US recently with any data points? Trying to do a Central America to Cuba to US itinerary (those Jetblue fares at 100 points +$40 are tempting), and would like to make this work.

Otherwise, roundtrip from Mexico it is!
This recent thread may answer your question:
https://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntr...rreign-citizen
VidaNaPraia is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread