Cuba has launched a campaign with the aim of welcoming more than five million tourists by 2019. The campaign has been running for some time and has had a noticeable impact: in the first four months of this year, Cuba received 7.2% more tourists compared to the same period last year.
Cuba has proven exceedingly popular with tourists this year. According to the Minister for Tourism, Manuel Marrero Cruz, this is an achievement to be proud of, as the country faces a number of complex situations.
More tourists to Cuba, despite complex situation
More and more tourists are travelling to Cuba, despite the complex issues the country has to deal with. There are, for example, a number of problems with the European Union. Tourism declined considerably in prior years, not just in Cuba, but everywhere in the Caribbean.
That is why the Minister for Tourism has launched a new campaign in Cuba. Thanks to this campaign, the number of visitors, particularly from Canada and Russia, has increased substantially. Canada remains the most important country of origin for tourists going to Cuba.
The Minister says that various measures have been taken to attract more tourists. FITCuba (International Tourism Fair), the most important event for the tourism sector in Cuba, took place again this year. The 39th edition took place last May in Havana, the city that celebrates its 500th anniversary this November. New projects were announced during the fair and the country's commitment to providing tourists with a good experience was reaffirmed.
The tourism sector is important for Cuba's economy. If the country achieves this year's target of more than 5 million visitors, it will be the 12th consecutive year of growth in tourism in the country. According to the Ministry of Tourism, revenue from tourism in 2019 is estimated at more than USD 3 billion. Experts say that the expansion of accommodation options - including five-star hotels in Havana - and the increase in competitively priced hotels have led to increased interest among holidaymakers.
Travelling to Cuba
All residents of the European Union must apply for a visa if they want to travel to Cuba. This also applies to British and Irish travellers, including underage children. The Cuba visa is a paper card that must be kept with the passport. It can easily be applied for online and costs £39.95 per person. The traveller will then receive the visa card by post. If you are travelling to Cuba for a tourist purpose, you can apply for the Cuba visa online.
The Cuba visa basically consists of two parts. On both the left and right part the nationality, first name, surname, date of birth and passport number must be filled in. When you arrive in Cuba, one part will be torn off and confiscated. When leaving Cuba, the second part will also be confiscated. It is therefore important to keep the visa in your hand luggage, preferably with your passport.
Requirements of the Cuba visa
There are various requirements attached to the Cuba visa. For example, the visa is valid for a maximum of 30 days. It does not matter when you arrive in Cuba, because the validity of the visa does not start until the moment of arrival. However, when you arrive in Cuba, you must be in possession of a passport that is valid for at least seven months. Once you arrive in Cuba, it is possible to extend the visa by 30 days, so that you can stay in the country for a total of 60 days.
In addition to the passport requirements, there are a number of other requirements. For example, you are not allowed to work in Cuba with a tourist visa. If you arrive in Cuba by cruise ship, or if you fly to Cuba from the United States, you will need a special pink visa (the normal visa is green).
Cuba visa application
Applying for a Cuba visa is easily done online, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It takes about a week to deliver the Cuba visa. Shipping costs are already included in the total price. The advantage of applying online is that you no longer have to go to the Cuban embassy to apply for the visa.
Make sure to fill in your information accurately. It is important that the passport details are entered correctly, otherwise the visa will not be valid. Since the Cuba visa does not indicate the date of arrival, travellers can apply for the visa well before departure.
Urgent visa procedure Cuba
Are you leaving for Cuba in the near future? Then it would be wise to submit an urgent application. If you do this before 12:00 in the morning and pay the costs immediately, the application will be processed the same day and sent by post. A surcharge of £10,00 per person will be charged for submitting an urgent application. The delivery time of a Cuba visa is normally 1 week, but in case of an urgent application the visa will be granted within 1 working day.
Take note: this news article about the visa for Cuba is more than one year old. It might contain outdated information and advice, and no rights can therefore be derived from this article. Are you going on a trip soon and do you wish to do know what rules currently apply? Read all about the up-to-date information about the visa for Cuba.