Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Destination: Cuba

So I went to Cuba.

It had been on my radar for a while and the minute Obama lifted the embargo and Fidel died I saw a window.

I had planned to go to Miami for two weeks and turns out Cuba is an hour away so  I goggled all the possible airlines and settled for American Airlines.

Then I had to get a Cuban visa.

*Nigerian passport wielding citizens, you might want to lean in and pay extra attention here*.

Most countries have superb diplomatic relations with Cuba and so their citizens can obtain a tourist card at the airport and fly to Cuba if they plan to fly out of USA.

Tip: Some airlines (Delta) even arrange the tourist card for passengers for $50.
If you fly out of Mexico, the tourist card is $20.

But because that passport is green, I had to apply for a visa at the Cuban Embassy in Nigeria.

And because I relied heavily on the internet for Cuban travel information and American passport wielding friends I did not realize this till it was a month to the trip.

After detailed investigation aka furious direct messaging with a Nigerian in Abuja who had visit Cuba last year, I reached out to the only travel agent whom the Cuban embassy in Nigeria would accept applications from*.

Tip: You do not have to go to the embassy physically. All you need to do is send your documents to his office and he would sort it out. It takes an average of 5 days

I received the passport with my visa without a photo and panicked.
The technology at the embassy is so ancient they do not even give you visa's with photos included.

The visa costs roughly N30,200 inclusive of the agency premium. It is valid for a month but is only single entry.

Passport. Ticket and Visa all ready.
I flew into Cuba from Miami.

My Ticket cost $230.52 and it was  from Miami to Cienfuegos and Havana back to Miami.

Tip: American Airlines fly out of Miami International but charges $25/bag on flights to Cuba for economy seats.
Southwest Airlines fly out of Fort lauderdale and lets you check in two bags free. (So all your fire IG posts can get the work)

Since I had just one week, I had to pick the cities I want to visit and Cuba is the largest Caribbean Island so there are lotssss of cities.

Settled on Trindad and Havana and a day trip to Vinales.

Now that we have gotten all the boring but necessary paper work talk out of the way, look out of the next few posts with the photos and all that jazz.

*Send me a message if you need his details.

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