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Home | Jan 16, 2015 OFAC Rules | MH Ross plan | Travel Insured Lite plan | Travel Insured WTP plan | TravelSafe Classic plan

The Correct Jan 16, 2015 OFAC General License Rules
for US Residents Going to Cuba

In 2009, President Obama eased restrictions for U.S. citizens to travel legally to Cuba. Tourist travel without having an authorized reason is still prohibited due to the embargo. You can travel to Cuba under two different types of licenses:

  • General: On January 16, 2015, General Licenses were expanded to include 12 existing categories of authorized travel, incorporating categories that previously required a specific license.

  • Specific: A specific license is not transferable, is limited to the facts and circumstances specific to the application, and is subject to the provisions of 31 c.f.r. Part 501, the relevant executive order or part of 31 c.f.r. Chapter v.

General License

If it is determined that you can travel under a General License, no further permission from OFAC is required. General licenses will be made available for all authorized travellers in twelve (12) existing categories:

  1. Family Visits: visiting “close relatives” who are nationals of Cuba or visiting "close relatives" who are U.S. Government employees assigned to the U.S. Interests Section in Havana, Cuba. Family Visits include persons visiting a close relative (any individual related to a person by blood, marriage, or adoption who is no more than three generations removed from that person or from a common ancestor with that person) who limit on the duration or frequency of such travel.

    Cuban-Americans:

    • Cuban-born U.S. Citizens that came to the U.S. before 1971 need a U.S. Passport and a Visa issued by the Cuban Government

    • Cuban-born U.S. Citizens that came to the U.S. after 1971 need a U.S. Passport and a Cuban Passport issued by the Cuban Government

    Cuban-American Family Members:

    • If your mother, grandmother or great-grandmother was born in Cuba (3 generations)

    • If your spouse or partner was born in Cuba (or their mother, grandmother, or great-grandmother)

      If you live in the same house "as family" with a Cuban-born U.S. citizen

  2. Official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments, and certain intergovernmental organizations

  3. Journalistic activities

  4. Professional research and professional meetings

  5. Educational activities

  6. Religious activities

  7. Public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions

  8. Support for the Cuban people

  9. Humanitarian projects

  10. Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes

  11. Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or information materials

  12. Certain export transactions that may be considered for authorization under existing regulations and guidelines

What to expect when you travel to Cuba legally:
(use your imagination if going illegally)

Once you have determined which license best fits your criteria, begin the process of booking your trip with Marimar Travel & Tours or another Legal Travel to Cuba provider. Please allow three (3) months when you plan on visiting Cuba, especially during high season (November - March).

Step 1: The Qualification Process

  • Determine what license you qualify for (your agent can help you with this)

  • Fill out a Travel Agreement with Marimar Travel & Tours or another Legal Travel to Cuba provider

  • Read OFAC's “What you need to know about the U.S. Embargo”

  • Fill out a reservation form with dates, names and other information

  • Apply for a U.S. passport if you don’t have one (your agent can help you with this)

  • Get two (2) passport photos taken for your Visa or Cuban passport (fees paid by you)

U.S. Born

  • Proof of valid U.S. passport (valid for at least six (6) months after your trip)

  • Visa form and tourist card will be provided by us

Cuban Born

  • If you came to the U.S. before 1971

    • You need a U.S. Passport and a Cuban Visa

    • Proof of valid U.S. passport (valid for at least six (6) months after your trip)

    • Proof of living in the U.S. before 1971

    • Proof of being born in Cuba

    • Name and address of relatives you plan to visit or find

  • If you came to the U.S. after 1971

    • You will need to get a Cuban passport (for Cuba) and a U.S. passport (for the U.S.)

    • Proof of valid U.S. passport (valid for at least six (6) months after your trip)

    • Proof of being born in Cuba

    • Proof of coming to the U.S. after 1971

    • Proof of living in Cuba prior to 1971

    • Name and address of relatives you plan to visit or find

Step 2: The Request Process

  • You fill out a Travel Agreement with Marimar Travel & Tours or another Legal Travel to Cuba provider

  • You fill out a reservation form with dates, names and other information

  • Your agent sends out your application for the Cuban visa or passport (fees are paid up front)

  • Your agent makes your airline reservation with an OFAC-approved chartered carrier (deposit required)

  • Your agent contacts Cuba and request availability for your preferred hotel (deposit required)

Step 3: The Confirmation Process

  • You receive your visa/passport from Cuba (Congratulations!)

  • Your agent confirms your airline, hotel and ground accommodations

  • Full payment for the trip is required at this time - cash, checks or credit cards accepted

Step 4: Documents for Travel

  Documents you will receive from us prior to your departure:
  • Cuban visa or tourist card

  • Round-trip plane tickets from your destination to Cuba (e-tickets are allowed)
    - note that your airline ticket name will match your Cuban visa name and won’t necessarily match your American passport name
    - be sure to bring your invoice because your airline ticket will not show your flight return time

  • Vouchers for prepaid hotel, transportation and activities in Cuba

U.S. Cities That Fly Directly to Cuba:

  • Fort Lauderdale

  • Key West

  • Miami

  • New York

  • Tampa

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Questions or ready to purchase? It’s easy (and safe) to purchase online or over the telephone – just call Deanna, Becky, Kim or Steve toll free at 1-888-407-3854 or 816-282-6858.

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Since Jan. 2005

Easily Contact CubaTripInsurance.com via email: steve@tripinsurancestore.com

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