USEFUL INFORMATION

TIME ZONE

Standard time: UTC/GMT -5 hours
Daylight savings hours : -4 hours
Compensation of the usual time zone: UTC/GMT -4 hours
Abbreviation of the time zone: CDT

CURRENCY

Convertible Pesos. (CUC)

All payments in establishments operating in freely convertible currency in Cuba are made exclusively in Convertible Pesos (CUC). The acceptance of Euros in the tourist poles is maintained: Varadero, Jardines del Rey, Norte de Holguín, Playa Santa Lucía en Camagüey, Playa Covarrubias en Las Tunas y Cayo Largo del Sur.
The exchange of any convertible currency can be executed in banks and exchange houses established for this purpose..
Credit Cards MasterCard, Visa and CABAL are accepted, as long as they have not been issued by US banks.
Traveler's checks are not accepted.

VISA

ON ARRIVAL IN CUBA, AT THE IMMIGRATION CONTROL YOU WILL BE REQUESTED:
- Passport with at least six months validity before expiration.
- Visa or tourist card issued less than sixty days in advance of your trip
- Medical assistance mandatory insurance.
- A real address of authorized accommodation (Hotel or private house legalized). A Voucher is not necessary. The address is given only when asked by the officer and it is not necessary to write anything on the visa (the modern forms do not have the section to put the accommodation)

Cuban authorities can check at any time the truth that you are really staying where you said, it is computerized and if you are staying in illegal homes you may have problems when you leave ...

If you change your accommodation, the new renter must immediately report where immigration is lodged. This is done for your safety, you must always be reachable by the authorities, in order to locate you safely in case of cyclone (hurricane), medical alerts, (flu A) etc.

VISA OR TOURIST CARD (they are the same thing) TO ENTER CUBA

To enter Cuba you need a visa or tourist card, (it is the same) issued by Cuban consulates in different countries or travel agencies.

The visa is valid for 30 days and can be renewed in the immigration office of any capital of the Cuban province for one more month.

There are countries whose citizens are allowed to stay up to three months, and others who are only allowed to stay for one month. You should check your case at any immigration office in the Cuban city where you stay. There are offices in all provincial capitals of Cuba.

The management of visa or tourist card extension is carried out in the immigration offices of the Cuban provincial capitals, upon payment of a fee in CUC, stamps-stamps, which are purchased in the branches of the Metropolitan Bank.

VISA for United States citizens:

12 OFAC CATEGORIES OF TRAVEL TO CUBA

1.- Family Visit
2.- Public Performance Athletic/Non-Athletic Competitions, Exhibitions
3.- Official business of the U.S.Airline ticket back to your country (or electronic ticket) Government, foreign government´s and certain intergovernment organizations
4.- Support for the Cuban people
5.- Journalistic Activity
6.- Humanitarian Projects
7.- Profesional Research and Professional Meetings
8.- Activities of Private Foundations or Research for Educational Institutes
9.- Educational Activities
10.- Exportation, Importation, or Transmission of Information or Informational Materials
11.- Religious Activities
12.- Travel related to some authorized export transactions

HEALTH SERVICE

Although Cuba is a country with a good level of hygiene, always be careful with food and especially with water. Therefore, we recommend you always drink bottled water and foods that have been boiled or fried.

Some of our tips are:

  • Remember that in case of any eventuality you should contact the insurance offices that you have hired to show you the closest convention center where you must go.
  • Take from your country any medicine you may need and remember that prevention is basic.

ELECTRICITY

The electricity in Varadero is 110-115 v and 60 Hz although most hotels have 220 volts at 50Hz. The outlets correspond to the flat parallel plugs.

PHONE CALLS

To call Varadero, dial:

  • 0053 (Cuba's prefix) + 5 (Varadero) + Phone Number

To call from Varadero to other countries, check:
  • 119 + (country prefix) + phone number

Phone numbers of interest
  • Emergencies: 55 11 85 / 55 21 85
  • Firefighters: 105
  • Police: 106