Cuba Travel Restrictions | where have you gone?


In January the Obama administration made sweeping changes to the Cuba Travel Restrictions along with a drastic change in the remittance allowances and who can send them to Cuba. These changes are now being to filtered down into the general population and Cuba is seeing bumper numbers of Americans visiting Cuba this year, some estimates pinning the number at 500,000+ Americans in 2011.


However the figures speak for themselves, or better said, the constantly reducing numbers of Americans being prosecuted for visiting the island. For instance, the number of individuals penalized by OFAC has fallen considerably since 2006 as backlogged cases have been resolved. A total of 290 individuals were penalized in 2004, 579 in 2005, 21 in 2006, and 17 in 2007. In 2008, OFAC reported that 32 individuals were penalized, with the great majority for having purchased of Cuban cigars over the Internet, while in 2009, just three individuals were penalized, and just one individual in 2010. To date, no individuals have been penalized in 2011 for violating the Cuba Travel Restrictions with record numbers, upwards of 500,000, Americans estimated to visit Cuba this year. Pretty damn good odds.


Some Americans have begun to understand that the “general license” clause in the OFAC regulations mean they need not apply for any type of permit to Cuba and must simply carry out fact finding and people to people objectives. Pretty simple eh? I mean, pretty hard to visit a country and not meet people right?
Yes, 2011 looks like it will go down in history as the year that the “dam burst” with many other Americans set to follow.


“To date in 2011, no Americans have been fined under Cuba Travel Restrictions”


However, the Cuban government may have to relinquish more staple markets to accommodate the influx of Americans. Already, Canadian operators are looking on in alarm as Cuban travel services begin hanging out their “sold out” signs way before the usually oversold summer season. And the upcoming winter season does not seem to be boding too well either, with some large operators from the north starting to see drastically reduced inventory.


However this finally pans out, the influx of Americans is inevitable but, will Cuba have enough space for Americans and their historic markets or will some markets be left by the wayside?
Only time will tell


Thanks to the following for research on this article


Cuba Travel for Americans

Boston Blobe

Comments are closed.

image image image