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posted by cmn32480 on Sunday December 20 2015, @12:42PM   Printer-friendly
from the short-flight dept.

Air travel from the United States to Cuba, and in particular Havana, may see a massive increase as the result of a new deal between the two countries:

The United States and Cuba have struck a deal to allow as many as 110 regular airline flights a day, allowing a surge of American travel to Cuba that could eventually flood the island with hundreds of thousands more U.S. visitors a year, officials said Thursday on the anniversary of detente between the Cold War foes.

The deal reached Wednesday night after three days of talks in Washington opens the way for U.S. airlines to negotiate with Cuba's government for 20 routes a day to Havana and 10 to each of Cuba's other nine major airports, the State Department said. While it will likely take months before the first commercial flight to Havana, the reestablishment of regular aviation to Cuba after half a century will almost certainly be the biggest business development since the two countries began normalizing relations last year.

Even a fraction of the newly allowed number of flights would more than double current U.S. air traffic to Cuba but it may take years to reach that number. U.S. travel to Cuba has risen by more than 50 percent this year alongside an even great surge in travel from other countries, overwhelming the country's outmoded tourist infrastructure.

Havana Times has an op-ed marking the year after President Obama and Raul Castro's statements on normalizing relations.


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Related Stories

Politics: President Trump Revises U.S. Policy Towards Cuba 47 comments

President Trump has placed some restrictions on travel to Cuba, but has not entirely undone the changes that former President Obama made in his second term:

In an overhaul of one of his predecessor's signature legacies, President Donald Trump will redraw U.S. policy toward Cuba on Friday, tightening travel restrictions for Americans that had been loosened under President Barack Obama and banning U.S. business transactions with Cuba's vast military conglomerate.

Trump's changes are intended to sharply curtail cash flow to the Cuban government and pressure its communist leaders to let the island's fledgling private sector grow. Diplomatic relations reestablished by Obama, including reopened embassies in Washington and Havana, will remain. Travel and money sent by Cuban Americans will be unaffected, but Americans will be unable to spend money in state-run hotels or restaurants tied to the military, a significant prohibition.

Editorials for and against the rollback.

Previously: Deal Will Allow Up to 110 U.S. Flights to Cuba Daily
President Obama Visits Cuba
USA Ends "Wet Foot/Dry Foot" Policy for Cuban Migrants


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  • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Sunday December 20 2015, @12:55PM

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday December 20 2015, @12:55PM (#278896) Journal

    I've never really traveled much, unless I was paid for it. In one manner or another, almost all of my travels have been funded by someone else, and I was paid for going somewhere to do something. A few exceptions, but not many.

    I'd like to walk through Havana. I'd like to buy a box of cigars, I'd like to sit down and enjoy a good smoke and a good drink. In Havana. I may just take a real vacation this year.

    Crap - I'm not even sure that I know how to take a vacation. Time to learn?

    Cuba, with no obligations. The last time I was there, was in Guantanamo, for Propulsion/Engineering Board (PEB). I never did meet a Cuban.

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    • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Sunday December 20 2015, @06:01PM

      by dyingtolive (952) on Sunday December 20 2015, @06:01PM (#278964)

      Yeah, I could see myself going to Cuba, for much the same reasons.

      Might wait a year or two, just to see how the locals react to the influx of tourism though. :)

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      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 21 2015, @10:15AM

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 21 2015, @10:15AM (#279214)

        You do know that it's only the cowardly Americans who didn't go to Cuba the last few decades right? Everyone else just kept on enjoying themselves there.

        From wikipedia:

        Cuban officials estimate roughly 1.6 million tourists visited Cuba in 1999 with about $1.9 billion in gross revenues. In 2000, 1,773,986 foreign visitors arrived in Cuba. Revenue from tourism reached US $1.7 billion.[63] By 2012, some 3M visitors brought nearly £2 billion yearly.

        • (Score: 2) by dyingtolive on Monday December 21 2015, @03:17PM

          by dyingtolive (952) on Monday December 21 2015, @03:17PM (#279261)

          Oh yeah, sure. I also understand that it's not unusual in certain countries for someone from the US to be treated differently than someone from, say, Germany or France.

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  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by isostatic on Sunday December 20 2015, @01:09PM

    by isostatic (365) on Sunday December 20 2015, @01:09PM (#278899) Journal

    So Long cube, was nice to know you. In 5 years time it will just be another Caribbean island.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Nerdfest on Sunday December 20 2015, @02:19PM

      by Nerdfest (80) Subscriber Badge on Sunday December 20 2015, @02:19PM (#278904)

      It is too bad. Cuba was like Canada's private vacation island.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @03:54PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @03:54PM (#278914)

      Yeah, I was WAY into Cuba before it became popular. They should be obliged to maintain my hipster mentality and keep themselves isolated.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:08PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:08PM (#278940)

        It's more like being into Cuba before it gets invaded by Fatmerican piggus.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @04:43PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @04:43PM (#278930)

      It was pretty much that before the revolt. It will get real ugly when real money is going there and the people who had their building seized want their property back.

      • (Score: 2) by hemocyanin on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:59PM

        by hemocyanin (186) Subscriber Badge on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:59PM (#278962)

        Man, all those people need to just give it up. It's called conquest and when you lose, you are lucky to get to keep your skin. If the US gets on some high horse about Cuba paying back those owners, it would be incongruous for the US to then not pay off the native tribes the US conquered to get all this land.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 21 2015, @05:14AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 21 2015, @05:14AM (#279164)

          Another round of glass beads, and the problem is solved.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:38PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:38PM (#278951)

      I figured terrorists would go there to fly into the US now, rather than having to try to jump over the mexican border.

      Many people equate brown with brown, and many people are ignorant.

      I know of some people that are Syrians; they run a tobacco shop near me. They have for years -- before the *present* mess in Syria developed.

      While they are a bit older now, they're still in the market for dating. Whenever someone attractive walks in, they change their names to vinny, vito,etc and pretend to be Italian. Most attractive women walking in have no concept its a ruse, and some have been frequent customers for years and have no idea at all that the "Italian" they hear being spoken is not actually the language of romance as they think it is...

      • (Score: 4, Informative) by isostatic on Sunday December 20 2015, @06:27PM

        by isostatic (365) on Sunday December 20 2015, @06:27PM (#278979) Journal

        I figured terrorists would go there to fly into the US now, rather than having to try to jump over the mexican border.

        Yeah, terrorists! Theyr'e behind every curtain, under ever rug, millions of them

  • (Score: 2) by Dr Spin on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:53PM

    by Dr Spin (5239) on Sunday December 20 2015, @05:53PM (#278954)

    So now I can actually visit The Buena Vista Social Club, but its too late?

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