Things to Keep in mind while traveling to Cuba.
1. If you wish to donate clothing, hygiene products, or little gifts here and there, It is recommended that if you are staying in a resort, to go to the local towns close to your resort and to hand deliver whatever you are going to bring with you. Do not always try to distribute it around the resort. Try to go embrace Cuban culture to actually see with your eyes and experience how Cubans live life in the villages, towns and neighborhoods of Cuba. — Ask the workers at the resort from where they live and say that you want to visit their town. They will love to show you around. To get a feel of where they come from. — Just don’t leave things on your pillow in your room to give to the person cleaning your room, Go and see where they come from. So tourists appreciate and see where they are.
*** Please keep in mind weight limits in baggage with your airline and if you do consider on checking in a second baggage, you maybe charged for it which in most cases you will be. If you are bringing things, please make sure that they are not prohibited items. Sniffer dogs and K9 units at the airport will be going around baggage to alert the officials if there are suspicious baggage that require to be opened and inspected.***
2. On your flight to Cuba, you will be asked fill out 2 forms. One is your tourist visa to Enter and Leave the country. — The tourist Visa must be filled correctly with no mistakes whatsoever. If you make a mistake, you might be charged $20.00 Canadian or USD for another one onboard the flight. However in an event that you lose your Tourist visa in any duration of your stay in Cuba, on your departure date to go back home, you must see a representative at the airport of Cuban Immigration to issue you a new Tourist visa, where some paperwork must be filled out. You will not be charged for the lost visa but it can delay the check in process before your flight. So please make sure to not lose your visa and keep your passport and other documents in a safe or securely placed somewhere.
The other form is to indicate whatever valuables that you wish to leave into the country as well as how much money you are carrying into the country and names of those traveling. You will submit that form after claiming your checked baggage and before you meet with the bus, taxi or whatever form of transportation that is waiting for you at the airport to take you to your resort or wherever you are staying with Transgaviota, Transtur or Cubacar. Cuba taxi….
3. Absolutely no liquids of any kind and size permitted through the airport security of any Cuban airport through the scanning process in your carry-on baggage for your flight outbound. All liquids must be checked into your checked baggage. Due to new security measures. even 100ml or less is prohibited. All must be packed. They are very strict. In some cases with medical issues they may accept, but always have a doctors note and pharmacy note to declare all medication and your health issue to aduana/customs/security officials if in case a situation arises in the last resort that they stop you.
4. The Cuban Airport procedures can be a lengthy process. Please pack a lot of patience. While the customs officials check your tourist visa, passport they will take a photo of you entering and leaving the country. You will be asked to form lines, and go through a lot. it is for security and protection purposes.
5. When locating your transportation be it a tour bus to go to your resort, The speaker in the bus will explain to you about an orientation to go to the next day explaining on excursions, about the resort, offers, and your shuttle back to the airport/flight and everything. It is not mandatory that you go to the orientation. You really do not have to go to it and spend your vacation in that meeting. You can always go to the front desk or lobby areas to find out any information you like during the duration of your stay. You can find out your flight information and bus shuttle time the day before you leave. No big deal on going to the orientation. I usually skip that. My time on the beach is a lot more fun and enjoyable.
6. There is no more requirements to pay departure tax. It is already included into your air and vacation package. No need for Cuban Convertible Pesos – CUC or unless you want to buy gifts or things for yourself in Cuba, but the $25.00 departure tax is no longer required on your exit from Cuba.