Cuba Regulations

People-to-People Visa Requirements and Details


Can U.S. Citizens still travel to Cuba?

Yes! Absolutely! And now is the best time ever to travel to Cuba. Prices are lower and there are less tourists making for better photographic opportunities. U.S. airlines (American, Delta, jetBlue, United and Southwest) all fly to Cuba on a regular basis. Individual travel is banned, but People-to-People group travel with a licensed travel provider (such as Photo Workshop Adventures) remain compliant with the requirements of the license. In addition, non U.S. citizens are always welcome to join our groups. 

Can I travel to Cuba as an individual?

Individual travel to Cuba for U.S. citizens was banned in November, 2017 by the new administration. The People-to-People regulations still provide that a U.S. citizen must travel with a licensed travel company (such as Photo Workshop Adventures) that organizes people-to-people trips and that the company and the travelers remain compliant with the requirements of the license. 

Can I travel to Cuba on vacation as a tourist?

Tourist travel to Cuba for U.S. citizens is strictly prohibited. Traveling to Cuba and lounging on the beach is not allowed. Organized group travel must include a licensed Cuban tour guide, a detailed itinerary including people-to-people interactions with Cuba people compliant within the requirements of the U.S. Treasury Department OFAC license. 

Can anyone join your Cuba People-to-People Photo Adventure?

Everyone can now travel with us to Cuba and experience one of our world renowned Cuba People-to-People Photo Adventures. International guests must apply for Cuban visas through their country’s Cuban embassy or consulate. 

Can I fly directly to Cuba from the United States?

Beginning in September, 2016 U.S. Airlines began direct flights to Cuba from major U.S. cities. Major carriers include American, Delta, United, jetBlue and Southwest. People-to-People visas are issued by each airline at checkin based on the official paperwork we provide you with. 

U.S. Citizens are banned from buying from the Cuban military.

Yes, the new regulations effective in November, 2017, ban U.S. Citizens from buying from military owned stores, hotels and restaurants. We make sure you stay clear of these so that you are compliant with the U.S. Treasury Department OFAC regulations.

Is the US Embargo against Cuba and the ensuing travel restrictions lifted?

The U.S. Embargo and travel restrictions remain in place for U.S. Citizens. Currently there are twelve categories of travel, including people-to-people travel. What this means is companies like Photo Workshop Adventures are authorized by license to send Americans to Cuba legally under this provision in exactly the same way we have done in past years. Individual travel is no longer allowed. 

What is people-to-people travel?

People-to-people travel allows people from foreign countries to engage in people-to-people cultural and educational activities that are not tourist oriented. Photo Workshop Adventures provides guests with unique access to people and places most tourists rarely get to see. You will learn from and collaborate with Cuban photographers, artists, writers and others related to Cuban arts and culture. You'll travel to a country once off limits, but more importantly, we'll take you deep into the heart and soul of the island where you will capture amazing photographs, and leave with memories you will cherish forever.

How much free time is there on the photo adventure?

Under the license, full participation on our renowned adventures is required by the regulations but we promise you won’t miss a thing. There will be times in the afternoons and evenings that you may be free to explore on your own.

What is a Cuban Casa Particular?

Back in the late 1990’s the Cuban government began issuing permits for Cubans to rent out rooms in their homes, entire homes and apartments. In Cuba these are referred to as Casa’s or Casa Particulars. Since 2014, the number of casa particulars being offered exploded to record levels. Bedrooms typically include an ensuite bathroom, and breakfast served by the homeowner. These are considered a bed and breakfast but some are setup as home stays. We use casa’s in remote areas like Vinales, Trinidad, Cienfuegos and Baracoa where hotel availability is very limited.

Can I use my credit card or debit card in Cuba?

Foreigners can use credit and bank cards, but U.S. citizens are still banned from this. It is not likely this will change anytime in the near future. 

Can I use my mobile phone in Cuba?

Foreigners can use mobile phones, and U.S. Citizens can now use their AT&T, Verizon and Sprint phones. Data is expensive as calls can be as much as $3 per minute. You can now purchase Cuban SIM cards for your phones. We can help guide you to do this, but waiting on long lines may be experienced.

Is Internet available in Cuba?

Cubans first got to experience the internet in 2015. Currently, the internet in Cuba is very limited. Hotels and most parks and plaza’s offer wifi, but with a very limited band width. You can buy a 5 hour Internet card for 5 CUC (they were 5 CUC per hour in 2015). It’s old school. You must login and logoff each time you use it. We expect access to continue to improve over time.

Links to latest information from the U.S. Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

Main Link:  U.S. Department of Treasury - OFAC - Cuba Sanctions

Update:  Frequently Asked Questions about Cuba Regulations (November 8, 2017)

Regulations:  U.S. Department of Treasury - OFAC - Cuba Sanctions Rules (Effective November 9, 2017)


If you are interested in booking a photo adventure, a private adventure to Cuba, or would just like to know more about our amazing adventures, please feel free to call us 1-888-834-0288 or click on the link below.

 BOOK A PHOTO ADVENTURE TO CUBA - CLICK HEREfile://localhost/Users/mac/Documents/PWA/PWA%20Website%20Backup/Backup-Pages/Cuba.html

Photo Workshop Adventures provides 100% legal Cuba trip under US Treasury Department’s OFAC People-to-People Travel Program. CT-2016-327909 / C.F.R. 515.567. This allows individuals to travel to Cuba for educational and cultural purposes.