How do you arrange a visa for Cuba?
Cuba is a special country to visit. It has a turbulent and incredibly interesting history along with a unique and tropical nature. It is the ideal place for a sun vacation where you also want to learn something. But of course Cuba is not in Europe and so there is a fairly present chance that you will need to arrange a visa. How does this all work? We explain it here in detail.
What do you need?
We’ll start right off with the simplest question: do you need a visa for Cuba? The answer is yes! Also, Cuba is less internationally oriented compared to the United States, so it’s important to get started in time so you don’t get into trouble. After all, Cuba is not a country where you want to get into trouble. So how do you get this visa?
How to arrange a visa for
Arranging a visa can seem complicated, but it’s actually not that bad. The most important thing is to start your application on time. It is wise to start arranging your visa at least six months in advance. This way you can be sure that all documents will arrive on time and you will not encounter any problems in Cuba.
The first thing to check before you start your visa application is to have a valid passport that is still valid for at least 6 months after your trip. So if you don’t have a passport yet then this is the time when you need to apply for one and if your passport expires before travel time then it is also wise to apply for it now. You may want to apply for a new passport later, so you don’t waste the validity of this current passport, but that can be inconvenient with visa applications. Make sure you have your passport arranged first.
Then the process of applying for a visa begins. This is also occasionally called a tourist card but so it is basically the same document. You can apply for a visa online. You will receive a blank visa by mail which you have to fill in yourself. So don’t panick if the piece of paper you receive is still completely empty. If you are traveling with a group then it is helpful to apply for all these visas at once so you can fill out all the information at once. This way you can be sure that all of this is correct.
Attention! All travelers must have their own visa. Children and infants must also have their own visa. So it is also wise to make sure that all travelers have their own passports. Also children and babies. Regardless of age, everyone should have their own visa.
Where can you apply for a visa for Cuba?
You have several websites where you can apply for this visa. Many travel companies will also arrange it for you if you travel to Cuba with them. The prices always vary slightly but it is usually a few euros.
You can also travel to the consulate of Cuba in Rotterdam or Brussels where you can arrange it on the spot. If you live in Rotterdam or Brussels or near these cities, this may be helpful when filling out the blank visa. Of course, you want to avoid filling in the blank visa incorrectly and having to start the whole procedure over again. That’s why we’ve listed some of the rules you need to follow.
First, it is essential that you write everything down in block letters, this way you will avoid any ambiguities. In addition, it is helpful to keep your passport next to your document and double check that you are copying all the information correctly. A spelling error can cause the visa to be invalidated.
You are not allowed to put lines through your words on the blank visa, even then it will be invalidated. As a result, you have to be extra careful when filling out your visa. It would then be wiser to fill everything out in pencil first so you can still erase if you fill something out wrong. Although you would also prefer to avoid that and so it is better to pay close attention before you write anything down. The visa will have two fields called ‘ENTRADA’ and ‘SALIDA’. You must leave these blank so that customs in Cuba can fill them in.
What's not aloud?
The visa you apply for Cuba is a tourist visa and with this some things are also not allowed. For example, you are not allowed to work while in Cuba. This visa is not valid if you are coming from America to Cuba or if you are coming off a cruise ship. In that case, you must apply for a “pink visa“. That’s another different thing. Also, a tourist visa allows you to stay in Cuba for up to 30 days.
It is possible to extend your visa in Cuba for 30 days. It is important that you do this at least 5 days before your current visa expires. You can have this done at the local immigration office and you must be able to show that the flight home and accommodation have already been booked. To pay for this, you must first visit the Cuban bank to get stamps, or “sellos”. So getting a visa for Cuba is not necessarily a lot of work but you have to pay close attention to all the details. If you start doing this on time then it won’t matter if a mistake is made once. But if you pay close attention at every step then this is not necessary at all.