Preparing for your trip to Cuba

Passports:

Visas are required for entry into Cuba for U.S. citizens

Passports are required to enter

Passports must be valid for at least six months after your trip and have at least two blank visa pages for country entry/exit stamps and    annotations – if not, apply or renew immediately

Keep a copy of the photo page of your passport in a separate, safe place while traveling

Carry extra passport photos in case you need to apply for a quick replacement

Travelers may be required to show their passports at all airports, train stations, and hotels

Currency:

There are two forms of currency in Cuba.  The CUP (Cuban Peso) and the CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso), pronounced "cook".  The major legal currency for Cuba is the, CUC.  Most tourists will only ever deal with CUC.   Note that there is a 10% penalty charged when exchanging USA dollars, so, you will only receive 87 centavos CUC for one USA dollar when changing the money, allowing for the 10% penalty and a 3% currency exchange fee.

The CUP, is perfectly legal for tourists to use.   CUP is good to have if you intend to get off beaten tourist paths and go where locals go. Local bus transport in Havana also only takes CUP and many street food vendors downtown (Prado) take CUP

Both types of Pesos, CUC and CUP, are legal tender in Cuba and both are completely available to anyone – including foreigners – with no restrictions whatsoever .

As a first-time visitor to Cuba though or as a resort tourist venturing off the resort for the day you can easily handle ALL your transactions with Convertible Pesos, CUC.

Currency:

Cash is a must.

At the time I traveled to Cuba, no American credit cards were taken anywhere.  There are banks in most hotels, that you can withdraw money from.

Lastly, if you leave a tip, leave it in CUC.

 

http://www.cubatourism.ca/cuban-money/cuba-currency-explained-complete-guide/

Health, Immunizations:

Immunizations are not required for entry

      Recommended immunizations can be found on the CDC website.  CDC Website - Cuba

Good to Know:

Travel within Havana

Old taxies can take you anywhere in Havana. They cost berween 10 CUP and 20 CUP per person depending on the distance and destination. However, you can pay for the service in CUC as well.

 

Time Difference

Cuba is on EST

Electricity:

Most common are 110/120 volts (US standard plug) and 230 volts, 50 Hzcan ( European two-pin plug) The Parque Central Hotel uses the European two-pin Plug 230v most other hotels in Cuba use US Standard plug

Things you may need for your trip to Cuba...

keep in mind you cannot pop into the drugstore and grab items you forgot, so pack supplies well

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