We couldn’t be more excited to head out on a tour of Cuba, and we hope you are too! Before joining us for your trip to this vibrant and exciting destination, there are a few important things you’ll need to check off your to-do list. Since American travel to Cuba still requires some extra pre-departure steps, we can’t stress enough how crucial it is to make sure all of your to-dos are completed well in advance of your trip. To be fully prepared for your tour, here are seven things to make sure to add to your list.
1. Review your final mailing documents
You will receive your Go Kit around your final payment date. In this package, you will find a number of items to help prepare you for departure (including a day-by-day itinerary, e-ticket and some more fun surprises), but the most important of these documents are your OFAC form and Travel Affidavit form.
These documents, along with a clearly printed copy of your passport, need to be filled out and sent back to Go Ahead no later than 40 days prior to your departure. If we do not have these three documents in hand by this time, you will be unable to visit Cuba as scheduled.
2. Make any flight requests
Your flights are booked, finalized and ticketed 70 days prior to your departure. This means that any requests such as seating or airline requests need to be made before then. Changes made to your flight itineraries after this date will result in high additional costs. Your flights from Miami to Cuba are booked on a group reservation, which means we will not be able to take requests for these charter flights in advance.
3. Weigh your luggage
When you’re heading to Cuba, both your carry-on and checked bag will be weighed together and cannot exceed 44 pounds total. Anything over the combined 44 pounds will be charged an extra $2 per pound. On your way home from Cuba, your carry-on will not be weighed, and your checked bag can be up to 50 pounds.
4. Let us handle your visa
By sending us a copy of your passport, the OFAC form and Travel Affadavit form (as listed above), we’ll be able to obtain the visa you need in order to travel to Cuba. We’ll handle all of the processing, and your Tour Director will have your visa information ready and waiting when you arrive in Miami.
5. Bring plenty of U.S. Dollars
U.S. credit cards are not widely accepted in Cuba and ATMs are hard to come by. Once you arrive in Miami, your Tour Director will advise you on how and where to exchange U.S. currency for the Cuban Convertible Peso (CUC). Additionally, be sure to notify any credit card companies and your bank of your travel plans, just in case. This will ensure that they know you are traveling and any purchases or transactions (when applicable) won’t be viewed as fraudulent.
6. Prepare to unplug
Cell phone use and Wi-Fi will be very limited on tour. Be prepared for little to no service and the possibility of additional costs for Wi-Fi at the hotels that have it.
7. Consider purchasing travel insurance
With the purchase of your tour to Cuba you will automatically receive health insurance that covers up to $25,000 in medical expenses due to illness or accident and up to $500 in dental. However, this insurance will only cover you while you’re traveling throughout Cuba, beginning when your flight departs from Miami and ending when you return.
If you would like to be completely protected throughout your trip for other elements such as emergency evacuation, repatriation, tour cancellation and interruption, travel and baggage delay and baggage and personal effects, we strongly recommend purchasing TravelSafe or TravelSafe Premium with Go Ahead.