I was supposed to be in Cuba this week on the inaugural Fathom cruise to the country (check out our coverage of the ship and itinerary), which was the first cruise ship from the US in 50 years. Sadly, my wife and I had to pull out because she’s pregnant and we didn’t want to take a chance with the Zika virus.
If you’ve never been to Cuba and have all kinds of questions (my hand is raised, too), check out this helpful first-timer’s Cuba guide from Lonely Planet. Of course, they want you to buy their Cuba guide book (it’s free for Kindle users or $16.16 on Amazon) but on its own, this page provides all kinds of great info and it’s free. For example, did you know if you lose the tourist card they give you on arrival it will take at least a day for the card to be replaced? Or how about that Cuba is a cash society and they have two currencies? The Cuban peso is for locals only and the other convertible Cuban peso (or CUC) is for tourists. The CUC is around 25 times the price of the local peso so be sure to check your change as the notes look similar. I also learned that it’s best to take a common currency like the Euro into the country and exchange it once you land. Don’t take US dollars.