Update: As of June 16, 2016, it is possible to reserve tickets to Cuba using frequent flier miles!
However, as of this date it is only possible to reserve frequent flier tickets by speaking to an American Airlines agent over the phone.
The good news: American Airlines has included Cuba in the Carribean region on its Flight Award Chart. So a round trip ticket would cost 30,000 miles if there is MileSAAver availability.
The bad news: The process is still somewhat complicated. At this time
- you can only reserve a round trip ticket
- travel can not originate in Cuba
- the entire trip must be less than 90 days
- reservations can only be made by phone
- you must specify on of the 12 reasons allowed for travel to Cuba, and sign an affidavit to that effect before departing from Miami
A few days ago, the US Department of Transportation approved some routes for direct flights to Cuba.
(Stock image courtesy of PIxabay)
Some of the airlines that will be able to start flights to Cuba within the next 90 days are:
- American Airlines
- Sun Country
- Silver Airways
At the time of writing this post, it is now possible to reserve flights to Cuba on American Airlines on the following schedule:
- Starting September 7, 2016:
Miami-Cienfuegos, one flight a day
Miami-Holguín, two flights a day
- Starting September 9, 2016:
Miami-Camagüey, one flight a day
Miami-Santa Clara, two flights a day
- Starting September 11, 2016:
Miami-Varadero, two flights a day
At this time, flights are still on the expensive side, over $400 when we checked. Also, at this time the option to reserve online with frequent flier miles did not seem to be available. We hope that soon it will be possible to easily fly to Cuba with miles.
It is still not permitted to travel to Cuba for tourism only. When you reserve a flight to Cuba, you must specify one of the following 12 reasons for travel:
- Family visits
- Official business of the U.S. Government, foreign governments and certain intergovernmental organizations
- Journalistic activities
- Professional research or professional meetings
- Educational activities and people-to-people exchanges
- Religious activities
- Public performance, clinics, workshops, athletic or other competitions and exhibitions
- Support for the Cuban people
- Humanitarian projects
- Activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes
- Exportation, importation, or transmission of information or informational materials
- Travel related to certain authorized export transactions
This seems to be the most updated information we could find at the time of writing this blog post on June 14, 2016. At this moment the news regarding travel to Cuba are changing by the moment, and we try our best to keep you updated.