Cuban government to offer private tourism products to holidaymakers starting this November
During a recent press conference held last Saturday 8th September, the Commercial Director of Cuba's Ministry of Tourism announced how the government would be offering new privately owned tourism products and services to international visitors as of next season (starting November through to April), thus enhancing the overall holiday experiences available in Cuba to the average tourist.
Aiming to diversify the Cuba tourism product and make it more appealing to a wider variety of potential tourists with different interests when looking at the prospect of planning a visit to the Caribbean island, the Ministry of Tourism in Cuba is currently working with the government to make privately-owned establishments and services more accessible to international visitors.
According to the official announcement, the Cuban government will start promoting private offers in tourism services during the next tourist season which starts in November and ends in April.
The new privately-owned products to be sold through state-owned travel agencies and independent travel companies at home and abroad will include BandB's style of accommodation, private tours and restaurants (the so-called "paladares" which have become so famous and successful in recent years that even distinguished visitors such as the Queen of Spain, JayZ, Beyonce and Leonardo Dicaprio have dined there).
Jose Manuel Bisbe, Commercial Director of the island's Tourism Ministry revealed that at the moment, the government was in the process of recruiting a big group of independent private businesses owned by the locals such as accommodation and the above-mentioned "paladares" restaurants, which in recent times have garnered very favourable reviews on sites like TripAdvisor.
According to Bisbe, these new offers are to be sold through state-owned travel agencies, as part of the packages and programmes they offer during peak tourism season, starting this November 2013.
This new initiative follows the previous efforts made by Cuba's president, Raul Castro, since he took office in 2008, when he started updating the island's 50-year-long socialist economic model. This resulted in a slow but ongoing government retreat from running virtually everything in Cuba, including cafes, restaurants, transport and tourist accommodation.
The recent plans to also improve the country's tourism infrastructure have also extended to the renovation of the island's main airports (which are currently taking place island-wide), including the $10 million investment at Havana's Jose Marti International Airport.
Mr Bisbe also announced plans of operating new direct flights to Cuba from emerging tourism markets in Europe, such as Denmark, Poland and Spain, as well as an expansion of Air France-KLM's weekly service.
At present, Cuba runs ten international airports and three cruise terminals, which welcomed 2.8 million tourists in 2012. This year, partly due to the confirmation of new cruises arriving from Canada, Germany, Greece and the United Kingdom which will be bringing in over 1000 passengers each, the island expects to receive over 3 million international travellers.
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
Relish the timeless charms of Cuba from the comfort of Cuba’s most cutting edge hotels
- Stay at two of Cuba’s most cutting edge hotels, bursting with modern comforts
- Relish an all-inclusive beach retreat, boasting an overabundance of facilities
- Explore Havana’s charismatic, timeless and bustling streets
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
Discover the relaxing Varadero and sink into sublim tranquillity
- Experience the beauty of Varadero Beach where you can relax and unwind on the tranquil white sandy beaches whilst enjoying the 24-hrs All-inclusive offered at the Luxurious Iberostar Varadero
- Stay in Havana's most highly rated hotel, with an iconic location facing Central Park
- Discover Cuba whilst staying at the 2 Top rated TripAdvisor hotels in Cuba
A couples' special - enjoy the perfect mix of history, local culture and laidback beach retreat for the perfect romantic Cuban experience.
- Enjoy all kind of the Spa treatments, water and land sports at Blau Varadero
- Fantastic views to the ocean from the modern and elegant rooms with balcony or terrace
- The perfect location of Blau Varadero beside the pristine sandy beach
One of Havana's most historically popular mafia-run hotels of the 50s, the NH Capri is a legendary property with over...
Combine exploring the old dimes of Havana with a refreshing beach retreat in Vardero on an unforgettable twin centre...
Discover the cultural and historical treasures of Havana as you're treated to 5-star service at the Iberostar Parque...
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...
Look out onto the day to day life of Havana's streets from the Casa Santy's balconies, with its great location and a...