Special Requirements For Travel To Cuba Royal Caribbean

Special Requirements for Travel to Cuba with Royal Caribbean

Special Requirements for Travel to Cuba with Royal Caribbean


When planning a cruise to Cuba with Royal Caribbean, it is important to be aware of the special requirements that need to be fulfilled. Due to the unique political situation and regulations in Cuba, travelers must adhere to specific guidelines set forth by the Cuban government and Royal Caribbean. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of these requirements, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free travel experience.

Embarkation Process

Before embarking on your Royal Caribbean cruise to Cuba, there are a few steps that need to be completed. Firstly, all passengers must acquire a visa or “tourist card” specific to Cuba. This can typically be obtained through the cruise line or via the Cuban embassy or consulate. Additionally, travelers are required to purchase comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical expenses while in Cuba.

Authorized Travel Categories

Under the regulations set by the United States government, travel to Cuba must fall within one of the authorized categories. These include family visits, official government business, journalistic activities, professional research, educational activities, religious activities, public performances, support for the Cuban people, humanitarian projects, and more. It is important for travelers to have a clear understanding of the category they fall under and be able to provide necessary documentation to support their travel purpose.

Documentation and Paperwork

When traveling to Cuba with Royal Caribbean, it is crucial to ensure that all required documentation and paperwork are in order. Passengers should carry their valid passports, cruiseline-issued tickets, proof of comprehensive travel insurance, and the necessary visa or tourist card. It is advisable to make copies of these documents and keep them separate from the originals, in case of loss or theft.

Travel Restrictions

While traveling in Cuba, it is essential to be mindful of certain restrictions imposed by the Cuban government. U.S. citizens are prohibited from engaging in direct financial transactions with certain Cuban entities, including military-owned hotels and government-operated businesses. It is vital to familiarize yourself with the specific restrictions and adhere to them during your stay in Cuba.

Currency Exchange

The official currency in Cuba is the Cuban Convertible Peso (CUC). It is essential to carry enough cash for the duration of your trip, as credit and debit cards issued by U.S. banks are not widely accepted. Currency exchange can be done at airports, hotels, and exchange offices known as “CADECA.” It is advisable to exchange money in authorized establishments to ensure fair rates and avoid counterfeit currency.

Local Laws and Customs

Understanding and respecting the local laws and customs is crucial when visiting Cuba. It is advisable to familiarize yourself with the cultural norms, regulations regarding photography, limits on internet access, and the local legal system. By being respectful and mindful of the local society, travelers can have a more immersive and enjoyable experience during their visit.

Health and Safety

Prioritizing health and safety while traveling to Cuba is of utmost importance. It is recommended to be up to date with routine vaccines and consider additional vaccinations such as typhoid and hepatitis A. Travelers should exercise caution when consuming street food and ensure the water they drink is safe. Carrying a basic travel first aid kit is also advisable.


Traveling to Cuba with Royal Caribbean requires careful attention to the special requirements outlined by the Cuban government and the cruise line. By being well-prepared with the necessary paperwork, adhering to travel categories, respecting local laws and customs, and prioritizing health and safety, travelers can have a memorable and enriching experience in Cuba. With Royal Caribbean as your cruise partner, you can explore the beautiful island nation with confidence and enjoy all that it has to offer.

William Callier

William M. Callier is a journalist and writer with a passion for Cuba and its people. He is an avid traveler and has explored the island extensively, providing a unique and personal perspective on Cuban culture and politics.

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