Travel insurance for Cuba

Did you know medical travel insurance is compulsory for Cuba? We'll help you get the cover you need from $3/day*.

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Travel insurance rules continue to change as a result of the pandemic. Some information may not be accurate at this time. It’s even more important to double-check all details that matter to you before taking out cover. Please note:
    • Some policies may not be available through Finder at this time
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    Cuba is highly protective of its national healthcare system, which is why they won't let you in without travel insurance that covers medical. They're doing you a favour anyway, because not only will you be covered for expensive medical claims but you'll also be covered for a host of other travel-related risks.

    Airline loses your luggage? Street food didn't get along with your stomach? Hurricane disrupts your travel plans? Travel insurance will cover you for all that and more, so you can enjoy your holiday in peace.

    Compare travel insurance quotes for your trip to Cuba

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    *Quote of $3/day is based on a 25-year-old traveller going to Cuba for 15 days and getting a basic travel insurance policy retrieved on 30 August 2018.

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    Do I really need travel insurance for Cuba?

    As fragile as Cuba's healthcare system is, Cuba does not want to put any extra strain on it if it can be avoided. That's why they won't let you in without medical cover, and travel insurance is the best way for you to get it.

    Since May 2010 travel insurance for the duration of your trip with sufficient medical cover has been a requirement for entry into Cuba.

    Travel Insurance can also protect you from the specific risks in Cuba as well as common travel risks such as:

    • Stolen and delayed luggage
    • Cancelled trips
    • Personal liability
    • Overseas medical emergencies

    Continue reading to find out which 20 travel insurance brands provide cover for Cuba, or:

    Five reasons why travel insurance is necessary in Cuba

    While Cuba is generally considered a safe country to visit, travellers to Cuba can still be exposed to a wide range of risks which is why travel insurance is so important.

    • Pickpocketing, theft and even assault. These can be problems for travellers, particularly in big cities like Havana. Keep a close eye on your luggage at the airport at all times and avoid packing any highly valuable items in your checked baggage. Make sure your passport and travel documents are secure at all times and avoid wearing expensive jewellery or unnecessarily advertising your wealth.
    • Cuban roads can be quite dangerous. Signage is poor, road conditions can be atrocious in some parts and you’ll also be sharing the road with pedestrians, bicycles and even horse-drawn carts. Many of the taxis are unlicensed as well.
    • Motorcycle accidents. You can hire a motorcycle in Cuba, however you are prone to the common risks of motorcycle driving along with the dangers of riding on Cuban roads.
    • Food poisoning from street food. Due to the lack of proper hygiene sanctions along the street, food can be unsafe for tourists who aren't used to street food.
    • Animal bites. Watch out for stray dogs which can roam in packs in some areas. In particular, keep an eye out if you’re going camping or hiking.

    Add to these the fact that things can go wrong no matter where you are in the world, from stolen baggage and accidents to unexpected medical emergencies, and it becomes perfectly clear that travel insurance is a must for your Cuban holiday.

    Current travel warnings

    There are currently no warnings against travelling to Cuba. However, Cuba is currently experiencing transmissions of the Zika virus. Travellers should protect themselves from mosquito bites and pregnant women should discuss carefully with their doctor any plans to travel to Cuba.

    Can I get cover for adventure sports in Cuba?

    Cuba is a nation with a proud sporting history across a range of pursuits, although some of the facilities it has to offer are not up to world standards. Many travellers to Cuba enjoy participating in a range of adventure sports while in the country, from scuba diving to rock climbing and sky diving. Of course, all of these sports tend to come with a higher element of risk.

    You may have to pay an extra premium to cover the cost of cover for sports and adventure activities, but you can pay this amount for the specific number of days you will be participating in high-risk activities. If you're in the mood for adventure, you can compare how over 20 Australian travel insurance brands treat adventure sports.

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    Aside from travel insurance, what other entry requirements are there?

    There are several other entry requirements you’ll need to satisfy when visiting Cuba:

    You will need to apply for a visa - here's how:

    1. Contact the Consulate of Cuba for a Tourism Visa Application
    P: (02) 6290 2151
    A: 29 Kareelah Vista, O’Malley, ACT
    2. Fill out the form and supply the following:
    • A digital copy of your passport's photo page
    • A digital copy of your round tickets to Cuba
    • Payment of the visa fee

    If you need a visa to work or study in Cuba, contact the Consulate of Cuba for further details. Make sure you apply for a visa early, to avoid situations where you need to cancel your trip without travel insurance cover.

    Other requirements

    • A passport of at least 6 months old. This will be checked by officials upon entry
    • Travellers aged 70 years and older. You must purchase additional insurance from Asistur (Cuban travel insurance provider)
    • Personal medication. Medication must be in its original container with a clear label and prescription medication must be accompanied by a prescription from your doctor
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    Can I travel from the United States to Cuba?

    The trade embargo

    In early 2015, President Obama relaxed a strict trade embargo that the US had in place against Cuba for more than five decades. As well as affecting commerce and financial dealings between the US and Cuba, this change also relaxed the travel restrictions for Americans who want to visit Cuba. Since then, there have been several changes to entry requirements for US citizens which can make the subject very cloudy, even if you’re not a US citizen.

    What does this mean?

    While there is still an embargo on travel to Cuba, there are 12 types of travel to the country that are permitted for Americans, including family visits, professional research, journalism assignments, public performance, religious activities and for educational reasons. These rules may apply to Australians who travel from the US to Cuba. For the most up to date information, visit the U.S. Department of State’s website.

    What about via cruise?

    Flights are available to Cuba’s capital from several US cities but during the peak of the relaxed embargo, Cuba also emerged as a popular cruising destination. Currently, however, there are no cruises to Cuba from the US due, in part, to tightened and changing restrictions. If you’re still keen to sail to Cuba, instead of flying, there are a handful of cruise lines that have Cuban itineraries starting outside of the US.

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    Organising money for Cuba

    General Tips

    • Don't purely rely on ATMs. A common problem faced by foreign travellers to Cuba is difficulty withdrawing cash, typically due to a lack of ATMs and a similar lack of working cash machines
    • Withdraw money at the airport. Cuban currency is not traded internationally you cannot stock up on cash before you leave home; you’ll have to wait until you arrive in Cuba to get the money you need
    • Beware of the surcharge for USD. It’s also worth pointing out that, as the US embargo is still in place and efforts are underway to remove it, you’ll still be hit with a huge surcharge (10 per cent) when you convert US Dollars into Cuban Convertible Pesos. It can therefore be cheaper to exchange other currencies for Convertible Pesos, such as Euros, Swiss Francs or Canadian Dollars

    Using cards in Cuba

    Debit cards are highly recommended when travelling to Cuba as they can be used in stores and to pay for trips to your tour guide. Additionally, Debit cards from both Mastercard and Visa should work with ATMs however any credit cards will not. If you do have a Mastercard Credit Card or a Visa Credit Card, you can withdraw money from Cuban banks such as Cadeca so long as the card is not issued in the US. Have a look to see what options you have when looking for travel money for Cuba.

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    When is hurricane season?

    As Cuba is in the Caribbean, don’t forget the fact that it does sometimes get hit by hurricanes. Hurricane season runs from June to November and while this shouldn’t put you off travelling to Cuba, it’s always good to be well informed and prepared in advance. Travelling during this period can also enable you to access cheaper flights and hotel deals.

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    Who do I contact in an emergency?

    • Contact your insurer. You can contact your insurer to receive emergency and medical assistance. Many insurance providers offer 24/7 call centres for this very purpose.
    • Use a pre-paid mobile. Using a landline in Cuba is quite expensive, so the cheapest option is typically to use a mobile, although US cell phone providers do not have any roaming agreements in place in Cuba.
    • Cuban emergency number. The number for police, fire and medical emergencies in Cuba is 106
    • Australian embassy. The Australian Embassy in Cuba is located in Havana as shown below.
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    Travel tips for Cuba

    • There are two currencies in Cuba: the CUC (Cuban Convertible Peso), which is commonly used by tourists, and the CUP (Cuban Peso). Be wary of paying for goods with one currency and receiving change in the other currency.
    • Every traveller needs to pay an exit tax to leave Cuba. But this should be included in the price of your holiday.
    • Credit cards are accepted in Cuba as long as they are not backed by an American bank.
    • Be aware of being scammed with bogus excess baggage charges when checking in at a Cuban airport.
    • You’ll need a valid driver’s licence If you want to rent or drive a car in Cuba.
    • Hold on to your purse or bag. Especially when in crowded public areas.
    • Watch your valuables. Don’t leave your valuables unattended in a public place and make sure to keep your wallet in your front pocket.

    5 Questions to ask yourself before selecting a travel insurance policy for Cuba

    • Do you know Cuba? Familiarise yourself with Cuba and the risks you may face while travelling there – this will help determine your insurance needs
    • How long are you going for? Will a normal travel insurance policy do the trick, or should you consider an annual multi-trip policy or cover offered by your credit card provider?
    • What will you be doing in Cuba? Will you just be sightseeing or will you be indulging in adventure activities? Remember that there are many high-risk activities and events that a lot of insurers won’t cover
    • Will you be taking any valuables? Do you really need to take your laptop and top-of-the-line SLR camera? If so, remember that most insurers put limits on the cover they offer for high-value items
    • Do you have any medical conditions? Any conditions that already exist when you purchase a policy may not be covered by your insurer

    Travel insurance is an essential requirement when visiting Cuba, and it’s vital that you take the time to shop around for the right policy by looking at the features, benefits and exclusions of multiple policies

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    2 Responses

      Default Gravatar
      OthonielMay 1, 2018

      We are a group of 5 related, 2 of the guest live in Mexico and 3 of us from the United States. I just want to make sure all this is ok, we are all flying to Cuba from Mexico.

        Avatarfinder Customer Care
        JoshuaMay 3, 2018Staff

        Hi Othoniel,

        Thanks for getting in touch with finder. I hope all is well for you today. :)

        I understand that you are looking for a travel insurance. Generally, it is advisable that you get your travel insurance from where you are from. In this case, since you are from the United States, then you get insurance from the United States while your relatives in Mexico get theirs in their country.

        If you are looking for travel insurance for Cuba, please feel free to use our online form to get a quote found on this page.

        I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

        Have a wonderful day!


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