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Cuba

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You will adore the sights and sounds of

  • the numerous beaches, with their crystal clear waters as well her string of small islands (called cayes), each one as beautiful as the next,
  • a multi-cultural population, warm and welcoming to the visitor,
  • her bright daylight and a warm climate that boasts 330 days of sunshine a year..

Key information for your trip
Cuba


Here is a summary of the information you should know before flying off to the country.

Sail by boat during a cruise Cuba

The biggest of the Caribbean islands has a bit the form of a great crocodile. But rather is a pearl: its hundreds miles of beach have the colour of nacre. If it was called the "socialist paradise", seen from inside, socialism is nothing sorcerer: lack everything! But Cuba opens to the world and the world opens to the island. You will come for the softness of subtropical climate, natural wealth, beaches, coral reefs ... But Cuba is also five centuries of history with numerous architectural treasures and a culture filled with joy and laughter the minor event is celebrated dancing.

Money

Currency 

National currency is Cuban peso, divided into cents, but in the big cities, most consumables are purchased in convertible peso. Attention, American dollars are not accepted in the island. 

If you change dollars for pesos, it will apply a rate of 10%. None rate change for euros, Swiss francs or Canadian dollars.
Exchange rate
In January 2005, 1 euro = 1.31 Cuban peso. Traveller's checks
Caution with traveller's checks: the country accepts only those from non-American banks! Then opt for Visa travellers or Thomas Cook. However, few merchants accept them so you must change them at the hotel or the Cadeca
Credit cards
¡Visa International, MasterCard and Eurocard are accepted anywhere in Cuba providing that they are not freed by a bank of the United States (seizure!).
Many places accept payment by credit card, most big hotels, but very rarely restaurants, and almost never the paladares.
The service stations Cupet (or Servicupet) also accept it. But in practice, doesn't work always.
Many tourist shops accept payment by card.
Withdrawal of money with a credit card
Cash dispensers are beginning to appear in la Havana. But everything is going very slowly, a tourist can easily draw money with Visa or MasterCard directly in the counter. We must always present a passport.
Banks
Big banks (National Bank of Cuba, International Finance Bank, International Bank of Commerce, Banco Popular de Ahorro) open from 8.30 to 15, every day, except Saturdays and Sundays. Some banks (Cadeca of Santiago de Cuba, for example) are open on Saturday morning, even Sunday morning. In Havana, when everything is closed, it is always possible to go to the Hotel Habana Libre Tryp to make change.
Safety Tips
In pensions and hotels: in guest houses, check the safety of the house and check the status of room doors, before accepting it. In many middle and high range hotels, there are safes at the front desk, as well as small boxes with digicode in the rooms. On the street: Come out with a minimum of money.To avoid: backpacks.In the shops: either count your money, ask for the receipt of purchase () and always check, because there are many cases of small scam.
Budget 
A trip to Cuba is quite expensive compared to Latin America countries.

Useful information

Passport / Visa 

A current valid passport is required, valid 6 months after the date of return.
You must also submit a tourist visa obtained at the consulate in Cuba or in travel agencies and valid for 30 days. To get this visa, we have to submit a passport and a proof of the airline (or travel agent) that shows the dates going and back of its air travel. This affidative must also certify that your first two nights in a hotel in Cuba have already been reserved

Health 

No vaccine mandatory to go to Cuba, unless you come from a country where acting with rigor yellow fever and cholera.
In this case, the international certificate of vaccination will be required.
The health system seems to be one of the great achievements of Cuban socialism. Awesome the number of hospitals in this country! And the doctors are really competent.
However, Cuba is regularly victim of epidemics sometimes very curious.
t is advisable in any event, a minimum of vaccines:
Vaccines "universal" need to be updated: tetanus, polio, diphtheria, hepatitis B. Protect yourself against typhoid and hepatitis A. 
Yellow fever certainly has been eradicated in Cuba: there's no need of this vaccine (unless you must perform scales or travel in the south side of the Panama Canal).

Tips and prevention 

There's no malaria in Cuba. But you need to protect from mosquitoes, which are quite numerous and aggressives and can transmit many other diseases (dengue for example). Thus, from the sunset, carry clothes that leave few areas uncovered skin, apply repulsive anti mosquitoes really effective (Repel Insect Adult, Child and Trempage for impregnating fabrics), sleeping under mosquito net impregnated with insecticide. 
Attention in the sun.

Food Hygiene

Some precautions:
- Avoid drinking tap water, irrespective of the place where you are (even in the luxury hotels).
- Officially, the water is potable. In fact, it has very bad taste. Don't run risks, even in Havana.
- Eat fruits and vegetables only if they can be peeled, if they have been properly washed, and, of course, if they are cooked 

- Demand the meat well done
- No problem for the fish restaurants but not eat any product of its fishing
- Eat without restraint delicious Cuban lobster and all other crustaceans, but avoid the shells
- Milk and derivatives are permitted in the case of industrial products
Electricity 
You must have an adapter cause plugs are Americans. 
Overall, the current is 110 volts and monophasic, 220 in recent hotels

Useful information

Capital : Havena
Currency : peso cubain
Area :
Population : 11 167 325 Hab
Density : 101,6 Hab/sqm
Time zone : GMT - 5
Head of state : Raul Castro

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