Flights to Cuba

Discussion in 'Your Questions' started by zeiron, Apr 12, 2011.

  1. zeiron

    zeiron Guest

    Hi there,
    ill be in Miami in June and wanted to get to Cuba. ive looked into it but the only 2 options i have found are via Cancun or Grand Cayman. I thought about going one way via each, but the one way fares are basically the same as the return so its not ideal. Anyone have some suggestions on what the best options might be? I dont really have an airline preference but having said that, I wouldnt mind trying Cubana.

    cheers for your yelp.
     
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  2. docjames

    docjames Senior Member

    Jul 10, 2007
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    Your best options ex-MIA would basically be via CUN, or Canada with Air Canada.

    Cubana are notoriously unreliable, so allow plenty of time at each end of your connection into/out of HAV. Also factor in weather (hurricane season) depending on when you plan to travel.

    Via MEX is also an option I believe.

    We flew MX ex-CUN which of course is no longer an option......

    if you search, there's quite a few threads on best ways to/from cuba.
     
  3. notzac

    notzac Established Member

    Oct 6, 2008
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    #3 notzac, Apr 12, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2011
    From that part of the world, your best bet would either be with AC out of YYZ or AM out of MEX. For the latter, you'll probably need a TA to issue the ticket as AM don't make these flights available online; the direct MEX-HAV flights are apparently new (and are showing up as waitlist-only at this stage in Expert Flyer, though that might be the point of sale that EF is using).

    Both options are probably equally inconvenient ;)

    Also happy to answer any other questions you might have about Cuba :)

    EDIT: www.jetabroad.com.au can book tix on the AM flights, so it must just be EF. The flight numbers are AM461 on the way over and AM462 on the way back; it's a daily flight so there should be options there for you. Fares in to HAV are usually sky high and you won't be able to book everything in one ticket ex-MIA; MIA-MEX return is around $450 and MEX-HAV return is around $600. You'd need to overnight in MEX on the way over, but should be able to connect back to MIA same day for the return.
     
  4. zeiron

    zeiron Guest

    Thanks for your help sofar and any help regarding Cuba, like what to do and where to stay would be really appreciated. At this point i'm thinking to stay for 5 days, is this enough? or too long?
    I've found flights with AA to CUN for about $150 return or $900 for a YUPP fare.Id be interested in the YUPP fare if I score a weird routing that would maximise the SC earn. from CUN i've found a R/T fare with Cubana for $260, meaning i could get from MIA to HAV for about $400, albeit on 2 separate tickets. Can also get to GCM for about $300 plus the same again to HAV with Cayman Airways. Ideally, i wouldnt mind doing one way via CUN and the other via GCM but oneways are almost the same price as R/T so it doesn't make sense to do it this way.
     
  5. sergeyvzn

    sergeyvzn Established Member

    Dec 9, 2010
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    5 days??? Of course it's not enough unless you are not going to leave Havana...I've been twice and both times stayed for two weeks and thought it was not enough, there is a lot to see. Besides, if I were you, I'd go and visit places other than Havana - Trinidad is a must as well Cayo Coco or Cayo Largo, Pinar del Rio is interesting too and I'd go and visit Santiago as well
     


  6. notzac

    notzac Established Member

    Oct 6, 2008
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    I stayed here: Hotel Florida .. of course, it doesn't compare with what I'd expect most anywhere else in the world, but it wasn't too bad. Great location. Didn't get to trying a Casa Particular (staying in someones' apartment), but that's supposed to be pretty awesome as well.

    As for things to do, I thoroughly recommend reading your way through: Cuba-Junky - All About Cuba Traveler's information and reviews

    What sorts of things do you want to do? Havana is a fun city, but 5 days is about as long as I'd want to stay there in a single visit. Perr sergeyvzn, if you have longer .. go to other places as well. (Trinidad is supposed to be especially beautiful).

    Learn some Spanish if you don't already speak the language; it definitely helps. The Mojitos just about anywhere you go are fab, but the food at regular restaurants is pretty average. Find out the location of some Paladars for much better eating. Definitely go to a restaurant or nightclub to hear some of the local music -- I had a great night out at Casa de la Musica, great band and dirt cheap booze -- always a good combination :)
     
  7. docjames

    docjames Senior Member

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    All good advice so far. Agree 5 days isnt enough!! We managed to fit Cienfuegos (sp?), Trinidad (Iberostar hotel there was quite modern) and Havana into about 7 days. Could have stayed 7 months if i'd been able!

    Note we also stayed at the hotel mentioned. Great location. Easy walk though "old" Havana.

    A couple of issues:

    1. There's more than one "hotel florida" so unless transport arranged directly with the hotel or a tour company, beware the taxi driver takes you to the right one. Ours dropped us off down near the waterfront, whilst Havana was under curfew (post cyclone) and said "up there" pointing to a dark, cobblestoned alley. Cue four of us hauling suitcases up a closed street, fully expecting to be mugged by the driver's "friends". He comes roaring back in his minivan and waving furiously to come back down to him. Somewhat panicked, we do so. "Wrong Hotel Florida!!" he tells us in broken english. Phew. "Right" hotel Florida located and checked in (around 2 am!!).

    2. The cleaning staff stole various (non valuable) items from our luggage. Mostly soaps, perfumes, and some mini koalas (clip ons) we had broght to give away to local kids etc. Hotel staff useless in dealing with complaint, and seemed no point making police report as the overall value was less than required to make a claim on travel insurance - it was more the annoyance. After two nights in Trinidad, you should have seen the cleaning staff hiding from us when we were back there for our final night prior to flying out.

    3. The breakfast buffet (included in room rate) was appalling - virtually unedible.

    Lock your suitcases when you leave your room. Otherwise it's fine for what it is - a Cuban hotel.


    I'd also advise to be respectful to the people, who often genuinely dont have very much,but if you're nice to them, will do almost anything to assist you. Beware also that everything tourists see and do is quite closely controlled. Not that it's such an issue, just be aware of this. Some of the better things we saw / did were in our time wandering around on our own. Random tiny clubs with guys playing music etc. Note that most will then try and sell you a CD of thier music afterwards. Not overly expensive and a great souvenir. Ask them to pose for a photo with you (and have someone take your photo with the band).

    A 1950's car tour sounds corny, but was actually great fun, and a great way to get about and see parts of the city you couldnt walk to.

    Happy to answer more specific questions.
     
  8. Happy Dude

    Happy Dude Active Member

    Oct 13, 2006
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    Via Cancun will be the cheapest way for you and, as others have pointed out, the most adventurous. You may be able to book CUN-HAV-CUN online, although my card was not accepted. We ended up booking at CUN airport. If you go via Mexico city you may have the option of AeroMexico.

    The hotels in Havana were way way too much for our budget, so we did Casa Particulares. They're great and you get a good look at how the reasonably well-off Cubans live. I wouldn't bother making a booking as they'll often take the "bird in the hand" approach. You won't be left without a roof though because they'll find you somewhere. We just asked around upon landing at HAV and then each owner called their friend in the town we were heading to. Very easy. The cost was always 20-30 CUCs for two of us, and they were pretty similar in quality. You can pay them for meals but quality did vary from place to place though.

    You'll be gouged regularly and pay way more than the locals for practically everything, so if that sort of treatment bothers you then Cuba ain't for you. However, it's a fascinating place - a living museum. Nothing has changed in 50-odd years. The Cubans without access to CUCs are extremely poor and this can be particularly confronting at times.

    We did 18 days and visited Havana, Cienfuegos, Trinidad, Santa Clara and Cayo Largo. We found it difficult to move around quickly. Five days in Havana is plenty, perhaps not enough if you're into the music/dancing, so perhaps a two night trip to a beach or mountain area could be considered.
     

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