Back in May 2016, under the Obama administration, US sanctions were lifted on Cuba and US cruise ships were allowed to start sailing and docking in Cuba. This gave a wealth of opportunity for tourism to flourish on the beautiful, virtually untouched Caribbean island. It wasn’t made too easy for the Americans to get to Cuba as they were still required to obtain visas but at least it opened the gateways for a destination that many thought they would never get to see. Cuba said more than 140,000 US citizens had already visited the island in 2019 aboard cruises alone.
With Cuba itineraries from Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, Carnival plus others, Cuba was proving to be a very popular cruise destination.
However, things have now gone back to how it was before May 2016, after just 3 years of having Cuba on their itineraries, cruise schedules from some of the biggest cruise lines have had to have major changes for travel even as close as in the next few days.
The announcement by the Trump administration last week banning all US cruise ship operations from the United States to Cuba along with other travel restrictions meant that cruise lines were told they had a little more than one day to reroute or get their ships out of Cuba. Nearly 800,000 bookings were affected, according to the Cruise Lines International Association.
Eleven categories of legal travel to Cuba remain. They include family visits for Cuban-Americans, professional research, journalism, religious activities and athletic competitions. The bottom line is the Trump administration wants to limit US travel to Cuba and the economic benefits that US visitors provide to the Cuban government.
So just like the classic 1950’s cars you see dotted around Havana it seems that Trump has also gone back to that era with these absolutely ludicrous sanctions against Cuba.
However, if you are British or European citizenship then travel to Cuba remains the same and the cruise lines such as MSC and Marella Cruises will still operate their cruises as planned.
I wonder what the imbecile, sorry President does next.. actually build that wall?