Americans traveling solo to Cuba.

Old May 16th, 2009, 12:01 PM
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Americans traveling solo to Cuba.

My brother-in-law wants to travel to Cuba but is nervous about any repercussions he might experience--I assume from the US govt. He knows he would have to travel by way of Canada, which is no problem because we live in Washington State, and he can depart from Vancouver, B.C.

He's not in the least political. He says he's wanted to go to Cuba since he was 16 years old--I think that was pre-Castro-- but at that time his father wouldn't let him go.

He's African-American and seems to like to travel to places where there is a sizable population of people of color. (Our town in not at all diverse.) He's been to Belize, which he liked, and Jamaica, which he didn't like very much. He's also gone to Cancún with he son, but isn't a beach guy.

Anyway, I'm wondering about any Yanks who have traveled on their own to Cuba. Was there any problem with our gov't? Or with anyone else?
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Old Jul 29th, 2009, 07:38 PM
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I'll be watching this post-some friends and I want to go as well (we are US citizens) but don't know if they are still fining people upon re-entry to the US.
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Old Jul 30th, 2009, 12:04 PM
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i too have always wanted to go to cuba. my mom went a few times before castro and had wonderful stories of the nightclubs and stunning beaches.
the only advice i have is to search 'us travel to cuba' - i did this morning and there are numerous sites. one suggested that while there is theat of imprisonment and up to $250,000 fine that no one actually gets prosecuted. another said we are permitted to go but not to spend US $$'s while there. said cuba customs knows not to stamp US passports. also there are legitimate ways to go - with school, humanitarian group, as a reporter...
also look at the state dept web site.

i've seen political stuff that suggests that obama may have a different take on cuba/us than bush did, so maybe he could wait a year and see if anything changes re the law.
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Old Aug 1st, 2009, 10:00 PM
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Being from the U.K., I am unable to clarify the situation for U.S. citizens, other than, that whilst we were there early this year, there were U.S. tourists....though not many.
Our passports were not stamped and I believe that they do not stamp any passports.
You will not be able to spend US$$....as they are not accepted. You will also need to take a collection of credit cards as any with a US connection are not accepted. Of the seven cards I had in my wallet....only two were usable.

We loved our time in Cuba, particularly Havana, and hope that their relations with the US will continue to improve under Obama.

One things for sure......as soon as it is legally possible for you to visit Cuba, I highly recommend it. A quite unique country. The link below has some photos from our trip.

http://www.leightravelclub.com/cuba.htm
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Old Aug 2nd, 2009, 07:43 AM
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Just remember, that even via Cuba, it is against the law. Friends of friends of my parents were facing $25,000 fines, but I don't know what happened to them.

I would look into the humanitarian group angle, or church group, etc.
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Old Aug 2nd, 2009, 07:43 AM
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Doh! That is supposed to say "even via CANADA".
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Old Aug 2nd, 2009, 08:54 AM
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great photos thanks for posting them. the black ?? in mangrove - a jaguar?
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Old Aug 2nd, 2009, 12:33 PM
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The photos are just holiday snaps....from a couple of oldies...but maybe they give a flavour of Cuba.

More to the point, I came across this report......maybe VERY relevant to U.S. citizens. Click below....

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090724/...avel_violation
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Old Aug 2nd, 2009, 12:35 PM
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Oh yes Virginia, some photos were taken in mangrove.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2009, 11:01 AM
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Canada shares flight manifestos with the US so to go to Cuba from any Canadian city is asking for trouble. Mexico or other Caribbean Islands do not share manifestos.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2009, 11:28 AM
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Went to Cuba a few years ago, under an acceptable humanitarian "flag"...flew TACA charter non-stop, LAX to Havana and spent a delighful, fascinating, comfortable, memorable time there...with no trepidations whatsoever. I can't imagine going to Cuba by ignoring the law, whether I agreed with it or not. Don't know about anyone else, but my wife and I would be looking over our shoulders every minute..it would not be the happy experience that it was.

A few years ago I was told that the beleaugered Jewish community (dwindling from 15,000 pre-revolution to a mere 1,500 now) desperately needed medicines (heart, diabetes, asthma, etc etc). Roz and I volunteered to carry in two gigantic bags of said medications. Leaving LAX, customs checked us out thoroughly....arriving Havana, we breezed through customs...no one seemed to care. We paid our own way (flight and lodgings, food, etc) and were feted by the community for heeding their pleas. Certainly a high point in my worldwide travels. (Once in and once the "stuff" was delivered were were free to do as we pleased for ten days...I suppose in the lingo of today's dope-running world, we would be considered "mules"..so what!)

As a proud US citizen, I, personally, would not chance the Canadian or Mexican routes. Not worth the high anxiety, IMO.

Stuart Tower (I have scanned some pre-digital selected pix if anyone is interested...I'd be happy to post)
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Old Oct 2nd, 2009, 03:00 PM
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Stuart I'd be interested in learning more about bringing in medicines and if those programs are still in effect. Do you have a web site or agency I could check out?
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Old Oct 2nd, 2009, 08:40 PM
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stormy:

The program we were chosen for has ended due to a lack of funding this year. Other than that, I don't know what to suggest. We were recommened by a third party.

stu
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Old Oct 3rd, 2009, 10:56 AM
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Stu,

I'd love to see your Cuba photos. We traveled there legally in 2001. You've now given me the idea to scan my photos. Thanks.
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Old Oct 3rd, 2009, 09:44 PM
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CW...from a former Quincy-ite....
Bear in mind that these are selected photos which are only part of the whole passle...scanning can make a rank amateur photgrapher look a tad better. I've been periodically scanning all of my pre-digital, going back to 1946, covering about 70 countries...yes.
I hope you enjoy them...any questions, please write:
(best viewed as slide show, set at 5-sec. intervals and sit back)

[email protected]

Stu Tower
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Old Oct 3rd, 2009, 09:49 PM
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CW..would help if I included the pix...

http://picasaweb.google.com/stuartto...LS5h4e86MvMIw#

stu
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Old Oct 3rd, 2009, 10:01 PM
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CW and anyone viewing pix,
By running the slide show twice, some of the missing captions will show. Sort of a Picasa idiosyncracy.

stu
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Old Oct 4th, 2009, 01:17 PM
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Thanks so much Stu! Great photos and they bring back fond memories. There WAS music everywhere.

We missed the John Lennon park. Will look for it next time. We went to Havana, Trinidad, and Cienfuegos. Only one week, but it didn't seem rushed.

Now I have to go and dig out my photos.

(We had dinner in Quincy last night--a small Mexican restaurant called La Paloma--very nice.)
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Old Oct 4th, 2009, 05:25 PM
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Here you go. Basic info on touring Havana and things to see, places to eat, etc, and a slideshow of images to spark your imagination, or memories for those who have been there.

Steve

Touring Havana Itinarary
http://www.7daysinparadise.com/smf/i...p?topic=6052.0

Cuba Images Slideshow (Havana, Vinales & General)
http://s3.photobucket.com/albums/y55...view=slideshow
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Old Oct 4th, 2009, 09:45 PM
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(We had dinner in Quincy last night--a small Mexican restaurant called La Paloma--very nice.)

CW....I left Massacusetts (and Quincy) in 1957..been back many times...but a Mexican restauarnt in Quincy??? Unheard of back in those days...many Italian restos...my, things have changed. I still fondly and proudly call Quincy my hometown after all these many decades. I'm an Emerson grad, BU for masters. Been in California since 1957, though.
Where do you live?

Stu
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