The Law Regarding Travel to Cuba
Any American citizen or resident wishing to travel to Cuba must abide by regulations set forth by the U.S. Treasury Department. You may be asking yourself, “Why the Treasury Department?” It is because all U.S. currency, regardless of whether they are in your wallet or not, are controlled by the U.S. Treasury Department. When the U.S. Government decided to limit trade with Cuba and restrict travel for its citizens, it did so by placing strict controls on US currency. To monitor the situation the Treasury Department has a division dedicated solely to monitoring and controlling US dollars outside of our country. This department is called The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), and it plays a key role in governing all activities concerning Cuba. All travelers and flights to Cuba must abide by rules set forth by OFAC. Any transaction involving Cuba or a Cuban National must comply by regulations written and enforced by OFAC.
Cuba Cultural Travel has operated under a “People to People” specific license since 2011. With the latest amendments to the regulations, as of January 16, 2015, authorized travel is still required; however, CCT now operates under a general license. This stipulates that visitors to Cuba will engage in a full time schedule of people-to-people educational activities that will result in meaningful interaction between the travelers and individuals in Cuba. This general license allows Cuba Cultural Travel to operate tours in Cuba. These tours are open to all Americans, and no application or approval process is required. This license stipulates travelers must be part of a group and must adhere to the approved itinerary.