The United States imposes substantial restrictions on travel for both airfare and fights as well as hotels and tours to Cuba.
Tico Travel is licensed by the US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control to make travel arrangements to Cuba including but not limited to airfare and flights, for those individuals and groups who either (a) have obtained a Specific License from OFAC authorizing their travel to Cuba, or (b) are traveling under the general authorization given by OFAC for certain categories of persons without any need for them to apply for a Specific License (this general authorization is called a General License).
The US restrictions on travel to Cuba apply to all citizens and residents of the US, no matter from what country you travel to Cuba and no matter if you hold citizenship from another country as well. Only persons authorized by OFAC may use the charter service for airfare and flights between Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Cuba.
General Cuba Travel License:
This type of license allows certain categories of travel to Cuba and, if your travel is described by one of these categories, then you can travel and you do not have to make an application to OFAC. Categories under the General License include:
A: Visiting “close relatives” who are nationals of Cuba or visiting “close relatives” who are U.S. Government employees assigned to the U.S. Interest Section in Havana.
B: Official business travel by officials of the U.S. government, foreign government, or intergovernmental organizations of which the United States is a member.
C: Journalistic activities by persons regularly employed as journalists by a news reporting organizations or by persons regularly employed as supporting broadcast or technical personnel.
D: Professional Research conducted by full-time professionals in their professional areas, attendance at certain professional meetings or conferences organized by international professional organizations, or participation in certain telecommunications-related professional meetings.
E: Educational activities by faculty, staff, and students of accredited U.S. graduate and undergraduate degree-granting academic institutions.
F: Religious activities under the auspices of a religious organization located in the United States.
G: The commercial marketing, sales negotiation, accompanied delivery, or servicing in Cuba of telecommunications-related items that have been authorized for commercial export or
re-export by employees or, or an entity duly appointed to represent, a telecommunications services provider.
H:The commercial marketing, sales negotiation, accompanied delivery, or servicing in Cuba of agricultural commodities, medicine, or medical devices by employees of a producer or distributor or an entity duly appointed to represent a producer or distributor.Tico Travel's attorney has written a full description of the U.S. restrictions on professional research and educational activities in Cuba, including attendance at internationally organized and Cuban organized professional meetings.
Specific Cuba License
OFAC will consider issuing a Specific License in a number of categories of travel including and for which an application must be sent by an individual or institution to the Office of Foreign Assets Control OFAC:
A: Visiting a close relative who is neither a national of Cuba nor a U.S. Government employee assigned to the US Interest Section in Havana.
B: Journalistic activities for a free-lance journalistic project.
C: Professional research and professional meetings that do not qualify for the general license.
D: Academic educational activities not authorized by the general license for accredited U.S. graduate and undergraduate degree-granting academic institutions.
E: Educational exchanges not involving academic studies pursuant to a degree program and that takes place under the auspices of an organization that promoted people-to-people contact.
F: Academic seminars, conferences, and workshops related to Cuba or global issues involving Cuba and sponsored or co-sponsored by the traveler’s accredited U.S. graduate or undergraduate academic institution.
G: Religious activities not authorized by the general license for religious organizations located in the United States.
H: Athletic competitions by amateur or semi-professional athletes or teams selected by the relevant U.S. federation.
I: Participation in a public performance, clinic, workshop, other athletic or nonathletic competition, or exhibition in Cuba.
J: Activities intended to provide support for the Cuban people.
K: Humanitarian projects in/or related to Cuba designed to directly benefit the Cuban people.
L: Activities by private foundations or research or educational institutes that have an established interest in international relations to collect information related to Cuba for non-commercial purposes.
M: Activities related to the exportation, importation, or transmission of information or informational materials.
N: The marketing, sales negotiation, accompanied delivery, or servicing in Cuba of exports that appear consistent with the export or re-export licensing policy of the Department of Commerce and that are not authorized by a general license.
O: The marketing, sales negotiation, accompanied delivery, or servicing of medicine, medical supplies, or certain telecommunications equipment by a US –owned or—controlled firm in a third country to CubaFor a complete description of these categories of travel to Cuba,
For guidelines to apply for these Specific License, write to us or go to the following OFAC website:http://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/Programs/Documents/cuba_tr_app.pdf
If you do not qualify to travel to Cuba under the current restrictions but wish to be kept informed of any changes in the regulations, new opportunities to travel to Cuba we suggest you join our Cuba mailing list
FAMILY TRAVEL TO CUBA
OFAC has eased restrictions on travel-related transactions for visits to "close relatives" who are nationals of Cuba by issuing a general license.
Travelers may visit "close relatives" (including, for example, aunts, uncles, cousins, and second cousins) who are nationals of Cuba.
There is no limit on the duration of a visit to these "close relatives."
There is no limit on the frequency of visits to these "close relatives."
Travelers may be accompanied by persons who share a common dwelling as a family with them.
Authorized expenditure limits for travel within Cuba have been increased to match the expenditures allowed for all other authorized categories of travel to Cuba -- specifically, the current State Department "per diem rate" for Havana (for use anywhere in Cuba) plus amounts for additional transactions directly incident to visiting close relatives in Cuba. The current "maximum per diem rate" is $179. For future updates to this rate, travelers may check the Department of State's Office of Allowances web site (http://aoprals.state.gov)
Fact Sheet: Treasury Amends Cuban Assets Control Regulations To Implement the President’s Initiative on Family Visits, Remittances, and Telecommunications http://www.treasury.gov/press-center/press-releases/Pages/tg273.aspx