Stiles' holidays in Cuba taught her a lesson
While enjoying her holidays in Cuba, Hollywood actress Julia Stiles was taught a lesson when she ran out of cash while exploring the beautiful Caribbean island after misjudging cost of lodgings and discovering that credit cards aren't accepted everywhere.
Hollywood actress, Julia Stiles, recently found herself strapped for cash during her holidays in Cuba after misjudging the cost of accommodation and discovering that the faithful credit card is not as globally accepted as many might presume.
With just three days of her Cuba holidays left to go, Julia explained: "I had been spending my convertibles, the secondary currency used by tourists, like Monopoly money. I figured when my cash supply got low, I'd simply slow down my spending.
"With funds dwindling, I realized I had miscalculated the cost of my lodging, and forgotten about the exit fee at the airport. Cuba is not a place where one can access American banks or use credit cards, so if you run out of cash you cannot get anything. You can't even get off the island."
Julia shunned Cuba hotels for a more authentic Cuban experience at a casa particular where local residents are permitted to rent out a room in their family home to travellers on holidays in Cuba.
Julia said: "The couple putting me up had become like my surrogate Cuban parents; Carlos knew just how I took my coffee, and would stay up waiting for me if I came home late at night. We would sit in their sun room and chat about everything from rations to folkloric dance, and I couldn't bear the thought of not being able to pay my bill."
Despite Julia's famous status within the film industry, it appeared even the locals stuck to their rules when it came to money.
"There are two currencies in Cuba, one for tourists and one for Cubans, and therefore two prices for everything", Julia commented.
Fortunately, Julia was able to borrow some money to pay for her housing and her experience of Cuba was reaching an end.
"My host generously offered to drive me to the airport in his 25-year-old stick shift, and I boarded the flight to Miami. With all of its crumbling beauty, Havana taught me the true value of a dollar. It also taught me that the people you know, and the ways in which you rely on one another, are more valuable than any paper currency."
Talk to a specialist
Call 020 7644 1770 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.
Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT
Popular Holidays In Cuba Browse all
Delight in the best Cuba has to offer with this stunning beach and city twin centre holiday
- Add Havana half-day tour from £49pp, taking in Revolution Square, Malecón and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Old Havana
- Iberostar Tainos is designed in the style of a traditional Caribbean village with two-storey bungalows that comprise spacious and elegant rooms
- Enjoy a historic stay in Havana at the NH Capri Hotel, which opened in 1957 and was initially run by the mafia
Combine colourful and vibrant Havana with a relaxing beach holiday in an award winning resort on the shores of Varadero
- Book early and benifit from huge early bird summer discounts!
- Discover Havana by day visit the historial sites and by night you can listen to live music or dance to the Salsa beat
- Enjoy complimentary pool-based dive courses on offer for beginners and experience one free daily dive at the Royalton Hicacos
- Three freshwater pools including four whirlpools and signature swim-up pool bar at Royalton Hicacos ensure an unforgettable holiday
Fall in love with Havana and its captivating heritage before being dazzled by the pristine shores of Varadero
- This package offers little touches to make your holiday extra special including a Welcome cocktail and a bottle of cava on arrival in Havana and Varadero
- You will be staying in luxurious hotels in both Havana and Varadero that combine perfectly and offer the best of both worlds whether you are looking for adventure or relaxation
- Experience the best of the world famous Varadero Beach where white sand is lapped by the clear waters when staying at Melia Varadero
Ideal for trendy couples - stay at a chic and sleek hotel in the heart of vibrant Havana and then Stay next to Cuba's famous Varadero beach
- Blau Varadero offers something for everyone with as little or as much as you want to do on offer including a spa
- Exclusive Couples offer - Welcome Cocktail, 1 hour free Wifi Access in Havana plus a bottle of wine on arrival, 30-minute massage and a Romantic Dinner in Varadero
- Be swept away by the amazing views of Havana from Capri's rooftop pool
Combine exploring the old dimes of Havana with a refreshing beach retreat in Vardero on an unforgettable twin centre...
Travel to one of Cuba's hidden touristic gems, Varadero, where stretches of secluded beach await you at Blau Varadero....
If you want to really feel Cuba's beating heart and pulsating rhythms, this is one of the best for an unforgettable...
Are you searching for an adventurous holiday filled with culture, authenticity and charm? Then why not enjoy a twin...
Beyond its sober elegance of Mudejar roots and the presence of round arches and red clay tile roof, it is known for its...
Club Kawama depicts a traditional hacienda type atmosphere, but in actual fact it's an All Inclusive resort. Beautifully...