6 Day Havana & Vinales Valley

From

$3269*

Air & Land

6 Day Havana & Vinales Valley

From

$3269*

Air & Land



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2024 Dates & Prices Single Supplement: $250
Hotel Dates Embark Tour Starts Ship Land Only Air & Land
Mon, Mar 25  (Sold Out) $3379*
Mon, Apr 22  (Sold Out) $3479*
Mon, May 13  (Sold Out) $3499*
$3269*
$3269*
$3269*
$3269*
$3269*
$3299*
$3679*

Not Included:
Gratuities.


Additional Information:
Pre/Post are not available for this program.

All passengers must complete & electronically sign this Travel Affidavit . Once completed, this form must be printed and kept with your travel documents.

Your tour will begin with an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager at approximately 6 PM. We recommend that you select flights which arrive no later than 4:30 PM.


Entry Requirements:
Passengers traveling abroad require a passport valid for six months beyond their travel dates. All travelers are responsible to check if a visa is required for all countries on their itinerary. For visa information, check our Visas page.



Is This Trip Right for You?

This active program covers a good amount of ground each day. Expect from two to three hours walking on some touring days. The pace is fast. You will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. Not recommended for people who have difficulty walking or who have heart conditions. There will be little or no free time during your tour, as most meals and sightseeing are included to be consistent with OFAC General License. The tourism infrastructure in Cuba is more limited than what you might be accustomed to from other escorted tour series. You can expect marginally lower standards at the hotel properties with less amenities. It may be necessary to make changes to the itinerary while the tour is in progress due to circumstances beyond the control of Gate 1 Travel and our local partners. Please keep this flexibility in mind during your tour. This is a Classic program. For more information, click here.

Accommodation Details





Room 1


  • Requests are not guaranteed and are subject to each hotel's discretion and availability

Additional Nights

Flight Details




Escorted Package Includes

  • Round trip flights Miami-Havana, Havana-Miami
    Other departure cities available. Click on date of departure for selection and prices
  • Airline taxes & fuel surcharges
  • 5 nights accommodations
    • 5 nights Havana
  • Hotel taxes, fees & service charges
  • Hotel porterage
  • All transfers
  • 13 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in modern air-conditioned motor coach
  • Services of English-speaking tour manager throughout
  • Entrance fees per itinerary

Special Features

  • A full-time schedule of daily people-to-people activities and cultural exchanges, including discussions with locals, artists, musicians, and more
  • Stop at San Jose Handicraft Market, famous indoor market located at the harbor
  • Travel through the unique landscapes of the Viñales Valley, best known for its tobacco farms
  • Gain insight into US-Cuba relations during a policy talk
  • Learn how to dance different Cuban rhythms
  • Attend a cooking class and interactive mojito-making and tasting experience

Is This Trip Right for You?

This active program covers a good amount of ground each day. Expect from two to three hours walking on some touring days. The pace is fast. You will encounter some uneven surfaces, stairs, steps and significant slopes. Not recommended for people who have difficulty walking or who have heart conditions. There will be little or no free time during your tour, as most meals and sightseeing are included to be consistent with OFAC General License. The tourism infrastructure in Cuba is more limited than what you might be accustomed to from other escorted tour series. You can expect marginally lower standards at the hotel properties with less amenities. It may be necessary to make changes to the itinerary while the tour is in progress due to circumstances beyond the control of Gate 1 Travel and our local partners. Please keep this flexibility in mind during your tour. This is a Classic program. For more information, click here.

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This program features the highlights of Cuba in an active itinerary which includes several walking tours as well as some early starts and long days. Itinerary is subject to change. If any activities do change, they will be replaced by other people-to-people activities.

DAY 1, Monday - Depart for Cuba
Welcome to Havana, Cuba's vibrant capital. Upon arrival, transfer to your hotel. This evening, attend an orientation meeting with your Tour Manager at approximately 6 PM, followed by a light dinner. We recommend that you select flights which arrive no later than 4:30 PM
Overnight: Havana
Meals: Dinner

DAY 2, Tuesday - Visit a Cigar Factory, Old Havana, San Jose Handicraft Market, Antique Car Club "A Lo Cubano"
Begin the morning with a visit to a cigar factory. Get insight into the art and history of this iconic industry from picking the leaves to the process of hand rolling each individual premium cigar. Then, take a walking tour through La Habana Vieja (Old Havana), a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Later, meet a former Cuban baseball player for a discussion about the history of this sport and what is like to like to play professional baseball in Cuba. Following lunch, tour the San Jose Handicraft Market. Stroll the lanes of this massive indoor market, offering the largest selection of Cuban handicrafts. Afterwards, meet the president of the Antique Car Club "A Lo Cubano" from the popular TV series Cuba Chrome and visit a private body shop. Tonight, dinner is at a restaurant
Overnight: Havana
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 3, Wednesday - Viñales Valley, Tobacco Farm Visit
Depart on a scenic drive through the countryside to Viñales Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where some of the world's best tobacco is grown. Visit a private tobacco farm and meet the owner, a 5th generation tobacco farmer. Gain insight into tobacco cultivation and view how tobacco leaves are processed for transport to the factory. Next, have lunch at an organic farm and private restaurant. Learn about organic farming practices and the entrepreneurial endeavors as a private business in Cuba. Afterwards, stop at a cigar factory to watch the captivating tradition of Cuban cigar rolling and witness the process of destemming tobacco leaves from the stem, before returning to the hotel in Havana
Overnight: Havana
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

DAY 4, Thursday - Casa Fuster, Havana Compas Dance, Community Project Visit
Following breakfast, participate in a discussion by a local expert on the current political policies between the U.S. and Cuba. Then, visit Casa Fuster, also known as Fusterlandia, the studio and residence of José Rodriguez Fuster and meet with local artisans in Jaimanitas. After lunch, continue to the Havana Compas Dance Company for a demonstration of Afro-Cuban, flamenco and other Spanish dances and music. Next, visit Vocal Clave de Sol, a community project, and immerse yourself into the Afro-Cuban Culture. Tonight, dinner is at a local paladar
Overnight: Havana
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5, Friday - Hemingway Museum
This morning, visit the Hemingway Museum at Finca Vigia San Francisco de Paula. During your visit, get a glimpse into Ernest Hemingway's life and work in Cuba. For lunch, head to a farm-to-table restaurant. Meet the chef who will lead you in a cooking class and interactive mojito-making and tasting experience. Return to the hotel. Tonight, meet private owners and taxi drivers of classic American cars for a special treat as you step into a classic 1950s American car and ride to a local restaurant for dinner
Overnight: Havana
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 6, Saturday - Depart Cuba
Transfer to the airport for your departure flight
Meals: Breakfast

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Gate 1 Travel itineraries may contain suggestions for activities for your leisure time; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently.
Book your Optional Tours before you travel. See more, save time, save money.
  • Tours purchased while travelling may cost an extra 10% or more
  • Tours often sell out. Avoid disappointment
  • Save your cash. Credit card processing may not be possible locally
  • Travel insurance only covers services purchased prior to departure
  • Book Online or call to book these tours up to 1 week before your departure
  • The day the optionals operate varies by the day of the week

Know Before You Go
Although most of the planning and preparation is taken care of for you, there are still a few things you should know and some details you should take care of to ensure your comfort, safety and peace of mind. Please review the following information before your departure to ensure that any surprises along the way will only be pleasant ones.
Getting Ready to Go
Passports and Visas
It is each traveler's responsibility to have a passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of travel and a visa if required. Please check the information at www.gate1travel.com/visas.aspx for the specific country/region you are visiting for more details. IMPORTANT: Passengers who are not U.S. citizens must check with the respective consulate or a visa agency to determine what personal identification is required. Passengers who enter, leave and then re-enter the same country on their itinerary should check if they require a double-entry visa. Passport applications are available at most U.S. Post Offices, as well as at regional Passport Agencies. Passengers requiring visas, whether obtained in advance or locally upon arrival, should ensure that their passport has blank pages.

Cuba
Visas required for Cuba
Important Information for Cuban-born U.S. Citizens
Upon completion of your booking, contact details for assistance for Cuban-born U.S. citizens will be provided. The following will be required:

a. Those who departed Cuba prior to December 31, 1970: HE-11 visa (allow 8 weeks to process) or a Cuban passport (allow 4 months); or

b. Those who departed Cuba after January 1, 1971: Cuban passport (allow 6-12 months for new requests or 2-4 months for renewals)

We recommend that Cuban-born U.S. Citizens who have previously been rejected for a Cuban visa do not reapply as a repeat rejection is likely and program cancellation fees will apply.

Cuban Visas - Visa required. To save time and skip some of the lines, we recommend purchasing your tourist card online in advance from Cuba Travel Services by clicking here. When purchasing your visa, you must select "Educational Activities" as your OFAC Category. The cost of this tourist card is $85 plus shipping and handling. Alternatively, the tourist card can be purchased on the day of departure at the airport's CTS "Cuba Ready" Kiosk. The kiosks are located adjacent to the check-in desk and gate in Miami, Tampa, and Fort Lauderdale. For those flying from Miami, this is at the American Airlines desk. For those flying from Tampa and Fort Lauderdale, this is at the Southwest Airlines desk. The cost of this tourist card is $100.

Important: Cuban-born U.S. Citizens should contact Gate 1 immediately. Those who departed Cuba prior to December 31, 1970 will require a HE-11 visa (allow 8 weeks to process) or a Cuban passport (allow 4 months). Those who departed Cuba after January 1, 1971 will require a Cuban passport (allow 6-12 months for new requests or 2-4 months for renewals).

Any passengers born in Cuba, regardless of current citizenship, must notify Gate 1 at the time of booking as additional entry restrictions or fees may apply. We recommend that Cuban-born U.S. Citizens who have previously been rejected for a Cuban visa do not reapply as a repeat rejection is likely and program cancellation fees will apply. Please contact Cuba Travel Services at [email protected]. Please indicate that you are a Discovery Tours by Gate 1 passenger and your booking number.

Traveling with Friends or Family?
If you are traveling with friends or family who are booked on another reservation, please make sure that we are aware. On occasion, we may operate more than one vehicle on your tour departure in which case we will ensure that guests will be assigned together. This is achieved by connecting your reservations before your departure. Once you arrive in your destination, it may not be possible to make assignment changes. To check that your reservations are linked, log into https://www.gate1travel.com/reservations with your email and password, select your reservation number, and check to see that your reservations are indicated as "Traveling With" at the top right side of the display.

Trip Preparation
A little pre-planning can make your trip go a lot smoother. Several weeks before your trip, make a list of what you will need to take with you. Make sure your personal documents (passports, visas, driver's license) are in order. Make sure also that you have enough prescription medications to last through the trip and carry them with you in case your luggage is delayed. Bring a change of clothes in your carry-on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost. Lost luggage is common. We strongly urge you to consider carry-ons instead of checked bags when possible, and when checking a bag is necessary, choose a bag color and identification that stands out. We suggest that you make photocopies of passports, visas, personal ID and any other important travel documents and pack them separately from the originals. You may also make a digital copy of your passport to keep a clear picture with the important details in your cell phone or digital camera photos. If you lose the originals while traveling, you'll have copies for easier reporting and replacement. Pack a list of medications including dosage and generic names. You may consider bringing a small supply of over the counter medications for headaches and/or anti-diarrhea pills (especially when traveling outside of the USA and Western Europe). We recommend that you pack a portable alarm clock. Due to security reasons, many museums have restrictions on the size of bags that can be taken inside and backpacks, carry-on bags or large purses may not be permitted. It is recommended to bring a small shoulder bag or purse to use in these situations instead. Avoid placing valuables such as cameras in your checked luggage. Airplane pressure can cause similar pressure in your body, most notably in ears, as well as liquid tubes and bottles. Your physician can suggest medication for decongestion. We suggest that you place liquid containers into Ziploc bags to catch any leaks.

Important Information About Travel to Cuba

Travel to Cuba is monitored by the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. OFAC issues general licenses for People-to-People travel (31 CFR § 515.565[b]), an initiative that allows U.S. citizens and legal U.S. residents to travel to Cuba on a limited basis to participate in cultural experiences and have direct contact with the Cuban people in order to learn more about them and their culture. Each traveler will have a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities that will result in meaningful interaction between the traveler and individuals in Cuba.

Information about OFAC and the rules governing U.S. citizens' travel to Cuba is located on the U.S. Department of the Treasury website at https://home.treasury.gov/policy-issues/financial-sanctions/faqs/topic/1541.

Required Daily Journal of Activities

Gate 1 Travel will complete and store the required OFAC documents, including a copy of the final tour itinerary and individual travel documents for five years. This will serve as proof that, under the requirements of the OFAC, you have visited Cuba for educational purposes. In the rare circumstance that a U.S. official asks for proof of the educational nature of your journey, please reach out to Gate 1 Travel for a copy of your final documentation.

Mandatory Health Insurance

Cuba requires the purchase of Mandatory Health Insurance (called Asistur) which is included in your air ticket price. Please keep a copy of your boarding pass which indicates the carrier provider, your date of arrival to Cuba and your point of entry. The boarding pass, or flight record itinerary is your proof of health insurance.

Travel Safety Advice: The safety of our guests is Gate 1’s #1 concern. Before making the decision to reserve your vacation, we want you to be aware of potential situations which may impact your holiday. While most of the time our programs run precisely according to plans, on rare occasion force majeure events including weather, transportation mechanical issues, or uninhabitable accommodation, civil unrest and even criminal or terrorist activities will present themselves unexpectedly and with little or no notice. Gate 1 will make the decision to cancel a tour only after receiving verifiable government issued information. We are otherwise obliged to comply with contractual airline and vendor agreements and carry out the tour until or unless we are advised otherwise. In the event of such an occurrence anytime after your date of departure, Gate 1 and the local destination ground staff, in coordination with government advisories, airlines, hotels, cruise ships and other vendors, will make decisions with regard to your safety first. We strongly recommend that tour participants review the destination country's specific information at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/alertswarnings.html.

Travel Protection
Even the best-planned trips can be impacted by the unexpected. And that is why we recommend that you help protect yourself and your investment by purchasing Travel Protection for your Gate 1 trip. Travel Protection can help with medical coverage for illness or injury, trip cancellation and/or interruption, baggage loss, medical evacuation, and more. At any time before you complete Final Payment, you may choose to purchase Travel Protection. The protection plan premium is non-refundable after a 10-day review period. In addition, you must be medically able to travel at the time the premium is paid. For a summary of the plan details on coverages, benefits, limitations and exclusions, please refer to the Description of Coverage by visiting www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit (CFAR) is a non-insurance feature that allows you to cancel up to 72 hours before your scheduled departure for any reason not otherwise covered in the Travel Protection Plan. CFAR must be purchased at the same time as the Travel Protection Plan as well as within 21 days of the original booking date. Independent or escorted tour reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to the full cost of your trip, less the cost of initial deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. Sea or river cruise reservations will be eligible for a future travel credit equal to 50% of the cost of your trip, less the cost of initial trip deposit, airline-assessed fees, amendment fees, and insurance premium. All CFAR credits are valid for a period of two years from the original date of travel. CFAR Credits have no cash value and are not transferrable. Airline-assessed fees are generally $300 per person, but may be as much as fully non-refundable. Some non-refundable airline tickets may retain value, less airline-assessed fees. Your future air credit must be used to book with the same airline. Deadlines to rebook and complete travel vary by airline and may be as early as 12 months from when the tickets were originally issued (not the date of travel). For details, www.gate1travel.com/insurance/.

This program does not apply to custom groups and Antarctica cruises. Residents of New York, Missouri & Minnesota may purchase this Cancel for Any Reason Waiver Benefit separate from Travel Protection. Call to speak with a reservation agent for details. This Cancel for any Reason Wavier Benefit is not insurance and is provided by Gate 1 Travel.

Mobile Phones
Mobile networks differ from country to country. We recommend you check with your provider to see if your wireless plan will work in the destination(s) you are visiting. To avoid possible roaming charges, you may want to consider purchasing an international plan. With most major phone companies, for a modest fee, you will be able to use your domestic plan's talk, text, and data allowances just like you do at home. If you can access the internet while you travel, you can also take advantage of services such as WhatsApp or Skype.

Cuba - The telecommunications in Cuba is changing rapidly, so before you travel, be sure to check with your wireless provider for the latest developments. Some U.S. carriers have or are beginning to make agreements with service carriers in Cuba to provide roaming services for cell phones and personal devices. If your carrier offers a roaming plan and your mobile phone is capable of roaming in Cuba, you should ask your carrier about any additional charges for voice calls, data, and outgoing text messages that you may incur during your trip. Please note that we are unable to provide compensation for phone calls regardless of reason.

Additionally, you can buy SIM card. If you have an unlocked GSM-capable mobile phone, you can buy a SIM card (CUBACELTur) once in Cuba or online for $25, that will allow you to use your mobile phone in Cuba. SIM cards come with 6GB of internet data, 100 minutes and 100sms. The SIM card expires 30 days after its activation. If bought online, the SIM card can be picked up at ETECSA Office before going through Immigration services, in Terminal 3, Jose Marti airport. Contact your wireless provider to check whether your mobile phone operates on the compatible standard and request that your carrier unlock your mobile phone.

WiFi Access
WiFi is available in most airports, hotels, and cruise lines, as well as on some flights, trains, and buses. There may be a fee for access and service quality and speed may vary greatly especially while on moving vehicles. Availability on cruises is also dependent upon its location while sailing through multiple countries. Please note that WiFi can be extremely slow, unreliable, and sometimes nonexistent in developing countries.

Cuba - Major hotels and resorts across Cuba offer WiFi, with hourly rates varying from approximately $2 to $15 CUP. General WFI access in the main areas of the hotel(s) are accessible with varied amounts of time offered free to the guests. You will be provided with additional information as to each hotel's amenities, when they become available prior to departure. As developments are being made, public WiFi hotspots are becoming available through major cities. Some of these hotspots require the purchase of an access ticket before you can log on to the WiFi network. The connection in Cuba is likely slower than you are accustomed to and in rural areas, the connection may not be available at all times. It is recommended to download the app WhatsApp to cellphones, tablets or iPads that will utilize WiFi while traveling, prior to travel. Once downloaded, the WhatsApp mobile application will in most cases allow you to use your cell phone to send text messages and calls using WiFi internet rather than over cellular service. In most instances, it will allow you to communicate with others in the US who have also downloaded WhatsApp.

Staying Healthy While Traveling
All travelers should familiarize themselves with local conditions, such as high altitude or required immunizations, which could affect their health. We recommend you consult with your personal healthcare provider, the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov) and/or the World Health Organization (http://www.who.int/en/) for their recommendations.

There are several easy steps you can take to stay healthy while traveling which may help prevent contracting an illness while away from home.

  • Watch what you eat. Try new foods in modest quantities, and depending upon your destination, you may want to avoid street foods, salad bars, raw vegetables and fruits, unless they have thick peels like bananas or grapefruit.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink bottled water and avoid consuming ice cubes made with tap water.
  • If you have allergies to foods, medications or insect bites, or have any other unique medical issues, consider a medical alert bracelet and/or a physician’s note detailing required treatment should you become ill.
  • Wash your hands regularly and carry hand sanitizer.
  • Where appropriate, pack sunscreen and insect repellent (for both active and warm destinations).
  • You may also want to bring a small first-aid kit with bandaids, antibiotic cream, pain killers, bug bite cream, digestive aids like antidiarrheal or anti-bloat medications, antacids, and cold medicine. This is in addition to any prescription medications which should be adequate for the entire trip.


Notice on Aircraft Cabin Insecticide Treatment - Please note that some countries may require aircraft cabin insecticide treatment for in-bound foreign flights. A list of such countries is available at: http://www.dot.gov/office-policy/aviation-policy/aircraft-disinsection-requirements.

About the Zika Virus - The Zika Virus is a mosquito-borne virus mostly found in areas of Mexico, the Caribbean, Central and South America. According to the CDC, most cases of Zika are mild. However, there is a potential link between this virus and a brain defect called microcephaly which affects unborn babies and may pose a potential risk to pregnant women. If you are pregnant or believe you could be at the time of travel, the CDC cautions against traveling to these destinations. For information, please visit www.cdc.gov/zika/.

Cuba - Dengue fever is endemic to the country, so it is advised to take precautions against being bitten by mosquitoes.

Consideration for Tour Participants (Escorted Tours)
For the benefit of all tour participants, we ask tour members to be considerate of their fellow travelers in the following ways:
  • Refrain from wearing colognes, perfumes and/or personal products containing excessive fragrance in respect for other guests who may be allergic
  • Avoid smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes or cigars in the vicinity of other tour members, including in outdoor areas where smoking may be permitted but may still affect other tour participants
  • No Smoking of any kind (medical or recreational) is allowed on any transportation that is exclusively provided by Gate 1. This includes e-cigarettes, e-cigars or any other smoking device. Furthermore, some countries heavily regulate the public use and possession of cigarettes (including e-cigarettes and vape pens) which could include their complete ban. Please check the regulation for the destinations you plan on traveling to prior to departure.
  • Avoid attire with political or religious messages that may offend other travelers
  • Respect your fellow passengers. Guests come from all walks of life and varied lifestyles. Please refrain from topics of conversation which might cause offense, such as religion and politics
  • Refrain from conversation or talking on mobile phones while commentary is in progress
  • Respect the mandatory seat rotation policy on the coach
  • Make use of the available hand sanitizer on the coach to support a healthy environment
  • Seek approval before taking photographs of other tour participants
  • Respect tour departures times to avoid delay and loss of sightseeing opportunities

Climate & Clothing
Cuba -The weather in Cuba is semi-subtropical. Temperatures are generally warm year-round. The rainy season in Cuba typically runs from May to October and the dry season between November and April. However, it may rain at any time and rain gear is recommended. Temperatures may range between 60-90 degrees so comfortable, cool clothing is appropriate. Air-conditioning is common in hotels and restaurants so layering is recommended. Not all locations have air-conditioning.

Cuba Average Temperatures

Dress for comfort and convenience with a casual wardrobe that allows for layering. Comfortable, cotton clothing is suggested. Your packing list may include casual daytime wear: shorts, slacks, long and short-sleeved shirts; a light sweater or jacket; comfortable walking shoes; sunscreen, sunglasses and hats; rain poncho and collapsible umbrella; insect repellent; toilet paper and travel packs of tissue. Please note medicines, toiletries and other items obtainable in drugstores in the U.S. are in very short supply in Cuba. We recommend that you pack an adequate supply of your prescription and non-prescription medication. Prescription medication should be in its original container. It is also recommended to bring copies of your doctor's prescription or a letter on your doctor's office stationary explaining that the medication has be prescribed for you, along with a list of the generic names of your medication. Please note that there are still some places where the use of face masks is mandatory in Cuba, so make sure to pack masks.

About Drones
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) or "drone" technology has quickly become affordable and is increasingly popular with recreational users. While some countries have clear, established drone laws, others do not, or existing regulations are undergoing review and change. Travelers who wish to bring a drone on their trip are responsible to research and abide by the laws and regulations of the countries they are visiting, as well as to check with their airline(s) regarding their rules for transporting drones. Please note that tours are unable to extend the length of scheduled visits and stops to accommodate use of drones.

Preparing for Your Trip
Reconfirming Flights
It is not necessary to call your airline to reconfirm your flights. However, we do recommend that you check your airline’s website 24 hours prior to your flight to ensure that your flights remain on schedule and that flight times are unchanged.

Seat Assignments
As a courtesy service, complimentary airline seat assignments are requested on your behalf and, when available, are displayed in order of Passenger #1, #2 and so on. Assignments reflect the best available seats at the time of booking. Some airlines and/or fare types do not allow for pre-seating and require this be done at airport check-in only; in which case the display shows “N/A”. Seats are subject to change by your airline(s) including, for example, when there is a schedule change or equipment change after your initial booking; this may cause seat assignments to be changed or even cancelled. Some airlines offer preferred seating for an additional fee; these seats may only be purchased directly from the airline. You will need your family name and the 6-digit airline “Record Locator” which is displayed with the flight details on your reservation. In the event that you change seat assignments directly with your airline, changes will not be reflected on your invoice or documents. At the time that Gate 1 travel documents are issued, the currently assigned seats will be listed based on the assignments stored in your airline reservation at that time. Should you have questions regarding your assignments, please write to us at www.gate1travel.com/contactus.

Frequent Flier Programs
Passengers are responsible to contact their airline directly regarding mileage eligibility and accrual. Airline frequent flier programs determine whether to award miles in part or total based on their own rules which are updated frequently. Some discounted or promotional airfares as well as some code-share flights are not eligible for mileage accrual. Some private airfares, such as a “Gate 1 Travel Airfare”, are not eligible for mileage or may qualify for reduced mileage, even if the same airline class of service is eligible for full mileage when sold as an “Instant Purchase” published airfare. Not all published airfares are eligible for mileage. Gate 1 Travel will record frequent flier numbers when provided by the passenger prior to travel documents being issued. However, the addition of frequent flier numbers to airline records does not guarantee mileage eligibility which is at the sole discretion of each airline. Airline schedule changes may result in flights which were originally eligible for mileage accrual no longer being eligible. We highly recommend passengers to provide their frequent flier account information whenever checking in online and/or at the airport check-in desk. After travel has commenced, it is often not possible to apply for frequent mileage credit. Passengers are also responsible to determine whether previously earned mileage may be applied to flights to secure upgrades.

Known Traveler Number (KTN)
If you have a KTN number, you are normally able to join the TSA security line for expedited processing at the airport. Prior to check in, you should go online or call your airline and add your KTN number to your reservation record. In most cases, you will then see the letters "TSA PRE" printed on your boarding pass. If these letters are not printed, you will not be permitted on the TSA line. Please be aware that some airlines do not participate in the program and therefore even if there is a TSA line at the airport, you will not be given TSA PRE status. Sometimes you may not be selected by TSA (even if you entered a KTN number) and even a minor name discrepancy can result in TSA PRE being denied. It is your responsibility to register your KTN number with your airline and Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for denial of expedited security. Note: KTNs are issued by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) after completing a background check through TSA's PreCheck® program. Global Entry members may also enjoy expedited customs processing.

Cuba - Mandatory Health Insurance - All visitors are required to have health insurance that is accepted in Cuba. In most cases, health or travel insurance policies issued in the United States are not accepted at medical facilities in Cuba (please check with your health insurance providers and travel protection providers). The mandatory health insurance is included in the total cost of your air ticket. Passengers must retain their boarding pass during their stay in Cuba. The boarding pass will serve as evidence of the insurance policy should any emergency medical services be required during the trip. The medical insurance issued by airlines is only valid for a period of up to 30 days. If a medical insurance policy is required for more than 30 days, subsequent policies may be purchased while in Cuba.

Please note that while Gate 1 Travel is facilitating the purchase of this required Cuban health insurance, Gate 1 Travel bears no liability and all matters regarding the insurance policy’s terms and limits, and health care in Cuba, are solely between the traveler, airlines and ESICUBA.

More information about ESICUBA can be found on their website: http://www.esicuba.cu/ProdPersonas.html

Luggage & Packing
Checked bags are typically limited to a total dimension of 62 inches by adding length + width + height (example: 26"+26"+10" = 62”), and a maximum weight of 50 lbs (23kg). Smart Bags with a USB charging port, GPS tracking device and other high-tech features are prohibited as checked or carry-on baggage unless the bag is made with removable batteries and the batteries are removed and stored separately. Many airlines charge for checked bags including flights which begin and end within the USA. The most inexpensive airfare options commonly known as Basic Economy airfares do not include any checked bags nor seat assignments before the day of departure. However, for some airlines, other airfare categories also do not include checked baggage. This will be clearly displayed in our airfare selection and on your invoice. Where available, we highly recommend selecting airfares which include at least 1 piece of checked baggage. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for checked bag fees, excess luggage or weight charges levied by an airline. Checked baggage allowances displayed on reservation details and invoices reflect the applicable allowance at the time of booking but are subject to change by your airline(s). For your airline’s requirements and fees, visit www.gate1travel.com/baggagefees.aspx. For important baggage information, visit www.gate1travel.com/luggage.aspx. Avoid placing valuables in your checked luggage. Federal law forbids the carriage of hazardous materials aboard the aircraft in your luggage, your carry-on or on your person. A violation can result in five years’ imprisonment and penalties of $250,000 or more (49 U.S.C. 5124). Hazardous materials include explosives, compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosives and radioactive materials. Examples: Paints, lighter fluid, fireworks, tear gases, oxygen bottles, and radio-pharmaceuticals. There are special exceptions for small quantities (up to 70 ounces total) of medicinal and toilet articles carried in your luggage and certain smoking materials carried on your person. Check the Transportation and Safety Administration (TSA) website www.tsa.gov to find out the current list of acceptable items you may bring on a plane before packing. We recommend that you use brightly colored luggage tags, straps or other identifiers to help you locate you luggage upon arrival or to describe it in the event that it is lost.

Carry on Luggage
Missed connections and lost luggage are more common than ever. We strongly suggest you use your carry on bag for those necessities you would miss if your checked bags went astray. Items to consider, but not limited to, are prescription medicines, eyeglasses, a change of clothes, mobile phone and charger, valuables (including jewelry and cash), passport, keys, insurance cards, local contact information. Refer to the TSA website for a complete list of items and their sizes which may be carried on board. We also recommend you bring a change of clothes in your carry on bag in the event that your luggage is delayed or lost.

E-Tickets & Advance Check-In
Review the flight itinerary included in your documents. Print and carry a copy of the air itinerary which contains the 6-digit airline "Record Locator" and e-ticket numbers. Advance online check-in is available on some airlines. If available, you may enter your name and 6-digit Record Locator or Flight Ticket Number at the airline's website, and print the boarding pass on your home printer within twenty-four hours of departure. You may check-in online, even if you plan to check luggage at the airport. Airlines without advance online check-in require you to present your identification and e-ticket numbers at the airport self-service kiosk or check-in counter. Paper tickets will be provided in the rare instance when e-tickets cannot be issued.

Day of Departure
Arrive On Time
Due to increased security measures, you should plan to check in at least three hours prior to the scheduled departure time for international flights and two hours prior for domestic flights. Many airlines do not permit check-in less than one hour prior to the scheduled departure time. It is your responsibility to arrive on time for all scheduled flights. Enhanced security procedures, including passenger screening, canine inspection, and inspection of personal electronic devices, have been implemented for all flights into the United States, and therefore security procedures may take longer than normal.

Check-In
If your flight itinerary displays a flight as “Operated By” another carrier, you should check-in at the desk of the “Operated By” airline. When you arrive at the airport, check the airport monitors for updated check-in desk listings. At check-in, be prepared to provide your government issued identification (valid passport required when traveling internationally) and your e-ticket itinerary/ticket numbers to the agent. Once you've checked in and received your boarding passes and luggage claim tickets, proceed directly to the security check. Security lines are often backed up and can take time to get through. Once you've completed security check, proceed directly to your gate and check the large electronic flight screens for your flight time and departure gate for schedule and gate changes. Airport desk clerks will assist with unexpected changes. Once you are in the gate area you can relax, shop or buy a snack before your flight.

Connecting Passengers
Passengers connecting from another point within the USA should check their luggage through to their final destination. Although problems with lost luggage have been minimal, it is a possibility. Certain carriers do not allow baggage “interlining,” and luggage must be checked separately for each flight. When you check your luggage, please verify where your luggage is being sent. When connecting between flights in major airports, you may need to pass through multiple security checkpoints. Therefore, we recommend that you proceed immediately to the gate area for your connecting flight to avoid any unexpected delays which may cause you to be late. Passengers returning to the USA may need to collect their luggage at the first airport of entry and recheck their luggage for their connecting flight.

Flight Services
Avoiding Jet Lag
In order to minimize fatigue and general restlessness caused by jet lag, there are a few steps you may take including switching to your destination time zone when you board the plane, by sleeping and eating according to the new schedule, avoiding heavy eating, caffeine or alcoholic beverages before or during your flight, and by drinking plenty of water and/or fruit juice while flying. Try to sleep on overnight flights and then, upon arrival, avoid the temptation to nap until nighttime.

Airline Food
Unless you are a first or business class passenger, you will likely be treated to a pretty mediocre culinary experience. Reasons for this range from airline budget constraints to the logistics of high altitudes, low humidity and air pressure which tend to desensitize taste buds. Small galleys, tiny ovens and precooked food, plus previously mentioned cost-cuts in order to keep airfares as low as possible, add to some often pretty poor fare. Our suggestion is to stick to simple options, carry a few granola bars, and don't expect this to be your best dining experience.

Premium Economy or Business Class
Service may not be available on all flights or aircraft types, and therefore some flights within an itinerary may not include Premium Economy or Business Class seating. This includes, for example, some US domestic connections and/or short haul flights abroad. When service is not available, you will be accommodated in the best alternative class of service and seating. Please check your operating airline to determine the extra services you may receive.

US Customs & Immigration for Return Flights
In most cases, passengers with return flights that include a connection in the US will need to complete customs and immigration formalities in their first port of entry, requiring them to collect their luggage and check-in for their onward flight. However, there are some exceptions: certain airports in Canada and Ireland (Dublin), allow US Immigration formalities to be completed in the overseas airport at the gate area.

Foreign Domestic Flights
If your tour program includes foreign domestic flights, and those tickets are not included together with the e-ticket itinerary in your travel documents, you will receive those tickets at your destination from our local representative.

What to do if You Need Assistance

Whether you purchased your airfare from Gate 1 Travel or from the airline directly, please bear in mind that Gate 1 Travel does not own nor operate the airline(s), nor the airport facilities where they operate. At times, flying can be a frustrating experience, especially when things do not go exactly as planned, and airline explanations can be confusing or even misleading. Should you face a problem, remain calm and seek assistance either from the airline directly or from Gate 1. Please be aware that in most cases, on the day of your flight(s), airlines pass responsibility for your reservation to their staff at the airport and it is not always possible for Gate 1 Travel to intervene on your behalf, either through our reservations system or directly with your airline.

Emergency Assistance
The Gate 1 emergency line is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call: 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676. From overseas, call: 001 215 572-7676. Outside office hours, listen to the prompts, then press 3. You will speak immediately with a representative, or you may be asked to leave a detailed message including your name, your booking number, and most importantly the telephone number where you can be reached. Your message will be forwarded immediately to a representative who will contact you at the telephone number provided.

Last Minute Schedule Changes & Flight Delays
On the day of travel, check the flight schedule and advise Gate 1 by phone, 800 682-3333 or 215 572-7676, of any significant changes that might affect your arrival transfer or hotel reservation. Gate 1 cannot be held responsible for affected land services, including arrival and/or departure transfers should flights be changed without our knowledge. Gate 1 will make every effort to inform passengers of schedule changes and cannot be held responsible for changes in routing and/or the number of stops in the itinerary. Nor will Gate 1 provide compensation for changes or cancellations implemented by an airline.

Missed Flights
In the event that you miss your flight which departs as scheduled, for any reason, your airline will consider you a "no-show” and may resell your seat(s) to other customers. This will also result in the cancellation of any later flights in your itinerary. Similarly, if you voluntarily decide not to use any of the flights on your itinerary, the airline will consider you a “no show” and cancel remaining flights on your itinerary. In this case, please contact your airline immediately for assistance in getting you to your destination. Missed flights are typically fully non-refundable and you may be required to purchase new flights from the airline at your own expense. Once your alternative arrangements have been confirmed, please contact Gate 1 with your new flight details.

Missed Connection
If you are connecting from a domestic flight which is delayed for any reason, causing you to miss your international flight, ask the airline for assistance in getting you to your destination. Since all airline tickets are issued on special fares which carry restrictions and penalties if changed, it's the airline's responsibility to make alternate arrangements on your behalf as Gate 1 has no authority or control over airline activities and policies. Do not leave the airline check-in desk until an alternative itinerary has been confirmed.

Lost Luggage
If your luggage is lost or damaged by the airlines, a baggage claim form must be filed with the carrier before leaving the airport. Any cost to retrieve luggage will be your responsibility and you should retain receipts to submit to your insurance provider. You may be required to return to an airport to retrieve your luggage personally.

Arrival & Departure
Arrival Procedures
Upon arrival, please complete immigration formalities if necessary and claim your luggage. If your program includes airport arrival transfers, check your voucher for specific instructions, as they vary with every destination. In most cases, you will be met after collecting your luggage or passing through Customs by the local representative who will be holding a Gate 1 Travel sign and/or a sign with your name on it. In some instances you will be instructed to walk a short distance to a transportation counter. The company's name and location will be printed on your voucher. If for any reason you do not connect with the Gate 1 transfer personnel, go to the Tourist Information Desk and ask them to page the Gate 1 Travel representative or phone the number on your voucher. If you are delayed due to lost luggage, phone the number on the voucher or have a companion exit the Customs Area to advise the transfer representative.

Be wary of airport scammers who offer unwanted assistance. If you are arriving without a pre-arranged transfer, we strongly recommend going to the Tourist Information Desk to ask for a licensed taxi or transfer service. You may be asked to pay for the transfer at the desk prior to the trip, this will ensure you are not charged extra during the trip.

What To Do When Your Flight Is Delayed
Airlines do not share flight manifest information. Therefore, the only way we may learn of a delay or schedule change while you are traveling is from you, the traveler. The sooner you are able to contact one of our offices, the better we can respond. Please refer to the Emergency Assistance instructions on this same document. Gate 1 Travel is only able to guarantee pre-reserved arrival transfers for up to one hour from the scheduled time, no matter the cause. In case you are delayed for any reason, and are unable to follow the instructions on your voucher, please make independent transfer arrangements and retain your receipts. Unused tour services, including transfers and hotel nights are not refundable. Upon you return home you will need to contact your airline and/or insurance carrier to investigate the possibility of reimbursement for any unused tour services.

Departure Procedures
If your program includes departure transfers, instructions will be stated on your voucher or provided locally.

Transfers
Due to local traffic and other extenuating circumstances, we ask that you allow 30 minutes from your scheduled transfer time for our representative to arrive. This includes hotel, airport and cruise transfers. Such possible delays are taken into consideration in scheduling transfers and you should therefore have no concerns about arriving late for your tour, flight or cruise. For transfers from a hotel, let the hotel reception desk or concierge know that you are waiting for a transfer. In the case of a missed transfer, reimbursement for your out-of-pocket expenses will be considered provided you obtain a written statement from the hotel's front desk verifying the length of time you waited, and the time you left the hotel, and a receipt for your transportation with time and date.

The cost of a transfer is more expensive than hiring a taxi, as a Gate 1 transfer necessarily includes round trip service, or 'dead-leg'. Often the places of call (airports, seaports, hotels) demand entrance and parking fees, where drivers may have to wait for up to an hour. Passengers comfortable hiring a taxi on their own and do not require assistance will save money.

About Your Accommodations
Hotels
Gate 1 Travel has carefully selected each hotel based on overall quality, location, price, food, service, and cleanliness. All rooms are standard twin-bedded (two single beds) rooms with private facilities. Special requests such as bed types, smoking preference and connecting rooms are subject to availability. Room selection in all cases, unless otherwise reserved, is strictly at the discretion of the hotel's management on a run-of-house basis. Triple rooms consist of standard twin beds or one double bed plus a sofa/folding bed or cot for third person except in the U.S. and Canada, where triple rooms often consist of two double/queen beds for three persons; where available, a fee may be charged by the hotel for the addition of a cot/rollaway. The number of persons accommodated does not dictate the room size. Although available at most 4 and 5 star hotels, the use of air-conditioning abroad differs greatly from the United States, and is often shut down at night and from the end until the start of the summer months. Some lodges and accommodations in remote regions may not have all of the amenities, such as hairdryer, alarm clock and room service, that you might find in a larger hotel located in a city center.

Cuba - You can expect marginally lower standards at the hotel properties with fewer amenities that vary from city to city. While basic toiletries are generally provided, guests may choose to bring their own.

Hotel Check-in/ Check-out
Hotel check-in time is generally not before 4:00 p.m. and check-out time is prior to noon. If you will be arriving early in the day or departing in the evening, hotels will usually allow you to store your luggage in their luggage room. Ask at the front desk if the hotel can check you in earlier, or let you stay later.

At Your Destination
Eco & Sustainable Tourism
We support global efforts to create a more eco-friendly world, intolerant of any forms of cruelty, abuse and intentional environmental destruction. To that end we ask that our clients maintain a watchful eye as they travel, and report any abuses they may encounter. One of the many benefits of tourism is the shared cultural knowledge and ultimate elimination of negative behavior through education. We rely on your good feedback to enable this element of symbiosis. As you travel and learn about foreign cultures, we ask first and foremost that you practice tolerance and respect for local customs.

Gratuities
Tipping is always a matter of personal discretion. For your convenience, please use the summary below as a guideline for recommended gratuity amounts. Gratuities may be paid in local currency or US dollar equivalent where accepted. Please be aware that tipping is considered by many locals to be a part of their normal remuneration and some may approach you for additional "compensation." There is no need to be intimidated by the request, nor should you feel pressured to pay more than recommended. If you become uncomfortable by any behavior you encounter, please advise your tour manager or phone our local office. Numbers are provided in your documents for your convenience.

Suggested Tipping: Cuba

In Cuba, tipping is a way of life. Local salaries are extremely low and don't suffice to buy everyday items. Tourism touches the lives of many Cubans and they truly depend on small donations and tips to feed their families. Though it may be a small amount to us, anything you offer these individuals that work hard to make a difference in your experience while there is greatly appreciated.
US Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): $8 - $10 per person per day
Cuba Tour Manager (Coordinator; may or may not act as a guide): $8 - $10 per person per day
Driver (Provides chauffeur services and limited assistance with luggage) : $2 - $3 per person per day
Cuban Local Guide (Offers in-depth information at specific locations. There may be one or many guides along a tour program): $4 - $6 per person per day
Hotel porters and wait staff: Included
Musicians in bars and restaurants depend on tips. We encourage you to tip a little if you enjoy their music.

Small Gifts: Some visitors enjoy bringing small items such as pens, markers, coloring books, and small toys to give out to Cubans. To avoid misunderstandings at Cuban customs, you should not refer to these items as donations, which require prior authorization, rather as small gifts.

About Your Itinerary
Cuba - Consistent with the requirements of the OFAC educational People-to-People license, this program features a full-time schedule of cultural exchange between participants and your Cuban hosts. There will be little or no free time on most days, except perhaps during a free evening when you're welcome to seek a local restaurant for dinner. The itinerary is subject to change. If any activities do change, they will be replaced by other up-close, people-to-people activities.

Travel to Cuba is regulated by the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. OFAC issues general licenses for People-to-People travel (31 CFR § 515.565[b]), an initiative that allows U.S. citizens and legal U.S. residents to travel to Cuba on a limited basis to participate in cultural experiences and have direct contact with the Cuban people in order to learn more about them and their culture. This program is planned to have minimal leisure time. Schedule of activities is intended to enhance contact with the Cuban people, support civil society in Cuba, and promote the Cuban people's independence. Each traveler has a full-time schedule of educational exchange activities that will result in meaningful interaction between the traveler and individuals in Cuba.

Suggestions for activities, when your full-time planned activities are complete, can be advised locally; these suggestions do not constitute a recommendation nor an endorsement of any specific service provider and the decision to participate in any such activities should be made independently and with due consideration. Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any activities not expressly included in its programs. Caution should be exercised when selecting certain activities that may require physical strength, coordination or exertion. Particular care should be taken when considering animal rides, such as on camels, mules or horses.

Land Only Passengers (Escorted Tours)
Your tour manager will contact you after your arrival at your hotel. Passengers who have not purchased arrival transfers from Gate 1 Travel should proceed directly to the hotel for check-in. The details of the hotel can be found in your documents.

Currency
Cuba - The official currency in Cuba, is the Cuban Peso (CUP). US Dollars can be used for tipping and paying in some private venues. Traveler's checks are not accepted anywhere in Cuba.
Credit Cards
While credit cards are accepted in most destinations, it is advisable to carry local currency. Inform your credit card company that you are traveling to avoid your card being blocked for security reasons.

While most US-issued credit cards have the embedded microprocessor chip, there are still some that have the magnetic-strip technology. The "chip-and-PIN" cards require users to punch in a personal identification number (PIN) instead of signing for a purchase. For example, many automated ticket kiosks, such as those commonly found at train stations, gas pumps and parking garages, don't accept cards without a chip and PIN. Most cash registers are equipped to handle American cards but if you encounter difficulties, offer an alternative credit card or politely insist that the cashier keep trying to swipe the credit card. ATMs typically recognize and accept US issued debit cards. For travel to Europe, should you anticipate using ticket kiosks or purchasing train tickets locally, you may consider buying tickets and other basic purchases prior to departure.

Cuba - U.S. Bank-issued credit cards, and debit cards are still not accepted in most locations in Cuba, at this time. Only the Havana hotel will take US credit cards. Please bring an adequate amount of cash in small bills. The suggested per day amount for travelers is US $100 for each day in Cuba. US dollars brought into the country must be clean, and in good condition with no tears or rips in them.

US Customs & Shopping
Cuba - Travelers authorized to travel to Cuba may import into the United States, as accompanied baggage, merchandise acquired in Cuba, such as coffee, art, music, handmade carvings, provided that the merchandise is for personal use only. Such imports remain subject to the normal limits on duty and tax exemptions for merchandise imported as accompanied baggage and for personal use. Please note, that as of September 24, 2020, authorized travelers may no longer return to the United States with alcohol and/or tobacco products acquired in Cuba as accompanied baggage for personal use.

Your Safety is Very Important
Prior to your trip, if you are traveling overseas, we strongly recommend that you visit the website of the U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov, specifically the section which addresses International Travel. You should read the tips for foreign travel and travel warnings for the country or countries that you plan to visit.

It is also important that you do not allow your common sense to take a vacation while on your trip. Here are several tips which, if followed, will save much potential hardship:

  • Always use seat belts (if provided)
  • Be aware of potentially dangerous places and situations as you would be at home. Avoid wearing expensive jewelry and carry your valuables concealed in inside pockets or hidden pouches. Your objective is to avoid drawing attention and to blend in with the crowd
  • Don't put all your valuables (money, credit cards, passports, etc.) in the same place (in case one wallet is stolen, you should have other valuables and identification in another safe place)
  • Do not leave valuables laying loose in your room or on the bus as Gate 1 Travel is not responsible for any loss. Use the hotel safe. Keep copies of your passports, credit card numbers and travelers checks numbers in the hotel safe
  • When possible we suggest traveling in pairs or groups when moving about independently
  • Do not pack valuables (cameras, computers, jewelry, etc.) in your checked luggage. Keep hard to replace valuables with you in your carry-on bag
  • Keep wallets safely tucked into front trouser pockets and/or wear a money pouch inside your clothing
  • Carry handbags close to your body, shoulder bags the cross-body method with the bag in front of your body
  • Credit cards are generally accepted everywhere and are safer than traveling with large amounts of cash
  • While in destination, you may encounter local wildlife. Please refrain from touching any animal as they may carry diseases or harm you.

If you've purchased an escorted tour program, your travel documents will include telephone numbers of local Gate 1 Travel representatives who will do their utmost to assist you in the event of an emergency. The numbers are printed on your Gate 1 Travel vouchers. Please copy the numbers. Once you relinquish the voucher, you will not have this information. Passengers traveling independently should employ the services of hotel concierges and local authorities.

Tourist Street Scams
Pickpockets and thieves can destroy an otherwise wonderful holiday. Be mindful of these precautions to help avoid being scammed or robbed:

  • Remain alert and cautious. Be wary of any unusual contact or commotion in crowded public places, including train stations, markets, subways and tourist sites;
  • Be especially careful when traveling independently, or leaving your tour group to explore on your own. Try not to travel alone, especially at night. Avoid narrow alleys and poorly lit streets;
  • Use only official taxis and check the change you receive from all taxi drivers and vendors;
  • Beware of pickpockets often working with an accomplice who will distract you by spilling something on you, dropping a wallet or other seemingly valuable object, or tripping and falling down in front of you;
  • Beware of aggressive street vendors who may approach you offering a demonstration which may end with you being pressured to purchase an item or act as a distraction for another pickpocket;
  • Don’t tip beggars;
  • Wear the shoulder strap of your bag across your chest;
  • Carry modest amounts of cash (US dollars) in small denominations so that you can avoid flashing large bills when paying for small items;
  • ATM machines can be a convenient way to carry less currency. However those machines too can be used for robbery. Be wary of anyone who can look over your shoulder when inputting PINs. Another scam involves rigging the machine with a plastic insert which makes your card retrieval difficult; the thief then removes your card after you walk away;
  • If you are confronted, do not fight back - give up your valuables. If your possessions are lost or stolen, report the loss immediately to the local police and keep a copy of the official report for insurance claims.


Cuba - While Cuba is considered relatively safe due to the military and police presence, we still suggest you take precautions while traveling throughout the country.

Pickpocketing, purse-snatching, or theft is possible anywhere. In the event of a confrontation, travelers should not resist. Theft generally occurs in crowded areas such as markets, beaches, and other gathering points. Exercise basic situational awareness at all times and do not leave belongings unattended, nor carry purses and bags loosely over one shoulder.

Avoid wearing flashy jewelry or displaying large amounts of cash. When possible, visitors should carry a copy of their passport with them and leave the original at a secure location. Be cautious of Cuban "jineteros" (hustlers) who specialize in swindling tourists. While most jineteros speak English and go out of their way to appear friendly, many are in fact professional criminals who may resort to violence in their efforts to acquire money and other valuables.

Local Emergency Phone Numbers
Languages
Cuba - Spanish is the local language. Cubans in general have a strong educational background and many will be able to speak some English, French, and Russian.

Electricity
Please note: The U.S. uses 120 volts and you can purchase a converter and transformer at most hardware stores for your 120V appliances.

Cuba - The voltage used is 220 volts but it is common to find both 110V and 220V throughout Cuba. Sometimes both European and American plugs can be used. It is advisable to bring a converter, if your electronics are not travel-ready (105-240V).It is possible to experience temporary power outages due to limited resources on the island.

Code of Conduct
Cuba - Cubans are friendly and expressive people. Shaking hands is the standard greeting. Direct eye contact in conversation is commonplace as it shows interest and respect. Visitors should observe normal courtesies. The atmosphere is generally informal and casual dress is appropriate. Politics can be a difficult topic for conversation, though many are open to the discussion. It is best to avoid open criticism of the government and allow for a polite difference of opinion on all sides. Please note that taking photos of school children while you visit schools is prohibited. Other prohibited subjects include military installations, industrial complexes, shipping ports, airports, secure government buildings, military personnel and other uniformed officials, all of which are generally not permitted in most countries. Otherwise you are free to photograph as you please. It is polite to ask permission before photographing a person. Some museums and historic sites may charge a small fee to take pictures inside exhibits.

Meals & Dietary Requests
Included meals are based on the restaurant's buffet or set menu. Beverages are not included, unless specifically stated. Although special diets like Vegetarian and Vegan are relatively commonplace in the USA, much of the world's menu options are more provincial. Please do not expect to find the variety of food selection outside of the local norm. Every effort will be made to honor special dietary requests selected no later than 5 days prior to departure in the passenger details section of your reservation. In addition, we recommend that you make preferences known to your tour manager upon arrival, and at each hotel/restaurant. Special requests are subject to local conditions and availability and cannot be guaranteed.

Cuba - Cuban cuisine is largely limited by the lack of resources available. The primary staples of Cuban cuisine are rice, beans, chicken, pork, fish, plantains and root vegetables. Restaurants don’t always have as much of a selection as in the US and menu choices can be limited, but there will always be another option for vegetarians. Unfortunately we are unable to entertain any significant dietary demands including but not limited to gluten-free, Kosher, Vegan, Muslim.

It is best to drink bottled water while in Cuba. Water is purified in the hotels and restaurants, and it is okay to drink beverages with ice at restaurants included on your tour. It is also not necessary to use bottled water to brush your teeth, as the tap water has also been purified.

Holidays
On public holidays, there may be reduced public transportation, as well as limited hours or closures of attractions, shops and restaurants.

Holidays - Cuba

Holidays 2024

Jan 1: Liberation Day
Jan 2: Victory Day
Mar 29: Good Friday
Mar 31: Easter Sunday
May 1: Labor Day
Jul 25-27: Revolution Anniversary
Oct 10: Independence Day
Dec 25: Christmas Day
Dec 31: New Year's Eve
Holidays 2025

Jan 1: Liberation Day
Jan 2: Victory Day
Apr 18: Good Friday
Apr 20: Easter
May 1: Labor Day
May 20: Independence Day
Jul 25-27: Revolution Anniversary
Dec 25: Christmas Day





5 Day Havana, Face to Face, February 2018
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Everything went very well on the trip. The guides Amit and Giselle were especially helpful and knowledgeable and a pleasure to be around. They were always accessible. The itinerary was extensive and gave us a real insight into life in Cuba. The Memories Miramar was a good choice for a hotel. Riding in a 50's convertible was an experience...There were plenty of educational and cultural experiences planned every day. I would recommend this trip to anyone.

Bernardine E. Peckville, PA
Cuba, Face to Face, February 2018
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It was wonderful. One of the best trips we have taken! Our guides (Doug and Romero) and driver (Luis) were excellent. They made it educational but also a ton of fun, and their passion for the country and its people was clear. I'm sure there must have been a glitch here and there like there always is on a trip, but they took care of everything and never let our group see any difficulty. Cuba is so beautiful!

Debbie H. Franklin, TN
Cuba, Face to Face, February 2018
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I just returned from a most fabulous trip to Cuba People to People by Gate 1 Travel. I travel quite a bit and this was one of the best trips I've taken. Everyday was filled with great touring, very informative and exciting. The guides were spectacular. Our tour manager, Douglas, was the best! He was very engaged with everyone, making sure we were all enjoying ourselves, staying safe, answering any questions or concerns we had. Our local guide Romero was excellent as was our driver Alexander. I so enjoyed the trip and the experience...I would go back and do it all over again. Thank you for a wonderful trip.

Joan G. Cuyahoga Falls, OH
Cuba, Face to Face, January 2018
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The trip was very interesting. The tour director, guide and bus driver were all great. Every thing went smoothly. Hope to travel with gate1 in the future.

Patrick R. Silver Spring, MD
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, March 2017
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Douglas, the American guide, and Gretel, the Cuban guide, were wonderful. They were very knowledgeable, accommodating, and great leaders. I enjoyed the activities, meals, accommodations, fellow travelers, and particularly all the tours we took. I would recommend this trip to family and friends, and I would definitely do another trip with Gate 1 in the future.

Mark F. Cambridge, MA
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, November 2016
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It was just lovely. We did not know what to expect in visiting Cuba and there were some surprises for sure. It feels important to have improved our understanding. Our guide Daniel was great.

Diane D. Stillwater, MN
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, November 2016
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Our trip was wonderful! Daniel, our USA guide, was excellent and our Cuban guide Romiro was also outstanding!

Paula S. Stillwater, MN
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, October 2016
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We had such a wonderful time in Cuba and it was a so informative on all levels. This is the second time we have used Gate 1 Travel and our experience was even better than before. Lillianna was so professional and her travel experience was exceptional. Our Cuban tour guide was also excellent!!!! This was quite the experience and we shall never forget it.

Janet B. New York, NY
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, October 2016
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We had a fantastic time. Great guides, great people. We will definitely use Gate 1 again.

Jill S. Sarasota, FL
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, September 2016
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The trip was absolutely fantastic! Carole and Graciel are amazing tour guides! They love Cuba, and it certainly shows. Everything was great - from the sites to the food to the hotel room!

Karla R. Midlothian, VA
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, August 2016
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Gate 1 rocks! You guys blew me away this trip. I’ve taken two other trips with your company, which I also enjoyed. But this one was the best for a number of reasons. Most impressive was the fact that you fed us for all three meals, every day that we were in country. These weren’t average meals either. Every one was a feast that could be categorized as “gourmet” at times. Lobster! Swordfish! Red snapper. Amazingly great fare served at top-tier restaurants; and not just by Cuban standards. Every lunch and dinner included dessert, too. Not only that, but you ensured that we travelers had our whistle more than whetted. Imagine, a mojito (sometimes 2 or 3), AND a beer, every meal! How could we not have a swinging time? You folks did not skimp. I can’t tell you how much it relieves us travelers when we don’t have to go through the stress of finding a good restaurant in a strange country. One that has great food, and one that won’t make us sick. You have no idea how much stress you relieved by providing this service. The other thing that I enjoyed was how action-packed each day was. You took us to all the places I personally wanted to see in Havana. Visiting Heminway’s home was tops on the list of “must dos.” So was the ride in the 50’s era American cars. Here was another place where you didn’t cut corners. We got to ride in convertibles! So cool. The night at the Havana Club was also a highlight I will never forget. Again, you folks exceeded our expectations by paying for a number of mojitos, and even tapas on top of that. We had a blast. The show was terrific and so was the dancing that we got to do. Which reminds me, thanks for the Salsa lesson. Best of all, none of these “excursions” were extra! What a refreshing change from other tours I have been on. You guys rolled everything into one single price; which I might add was very reasonable. When it comes to value for your money, Gate 1 cannot be beat. Of course, we loved our guides. Sergio and Romero knew their stuff, and we felt very confident that they could take care of us throughout the trip. You sure know how to pick your guides. And yes, Juanito, the bus driver, was also more than helpful and patient. Did I say that Gate 1 rocks? I mean it. I can hardly wait to sign up for another trip with your company.

David R. Phoenix, AZ
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, August 2016
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I enjoyed my Gate 1 escorted trip to Cuba very much. I took the People to People tour on August 22, 2016. It was everything the brochure advertised. I was very pleased with every aspect of the itinerary. It gave the comprehensive look of Havana I wanted and expected. I was very pleased with the accommodations at Memories Hotel. It was lovely and the staff there was very pleasant. All of the dining establishments we were brought to exceeded my expectations. The food was delicious and the service was excellent. The sightseeing destinations were all interesting. The air conditioned bus was outstanding. It was always clean and cool!!! It made it a pleasure to be driven around Havana. The local tour guide as well as the Gate 1 guide (Sergio) were very informative, organized, and were fabulous at their jobs. I would highly recommend this tour to others. Despite the fact that it was only 3 days, I felt I saw so much. I got a real peek into the life of the people of Havana.

Valerie P. Oakland Gdns, NY
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, August 2016
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Thank you for an awesome trip! Gate 1 can't be beat, from the tour manager (Andrew Spark was awesome!) to the visits to sites, restaurants, Cuban driver and guide, to the entire experience. Next time, I will plan the longer trip as there is so much to see. My favorites: The old cars, Fusterlandia, the performance at the Buena Vista Social Club, and lunch at the Leyendhabana Restaurant -- the food there was the best of all the restaurants! The hospitality of the Cubans is unsurpassed.

Betty A. Owings Mills, MD
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, July 2016
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It was a great trip. Our guides were very good - knowledgeable & fun. The group was the best - no one complained & everyone was always on time - amazing! We enjoyed seeing Cuba as it is because we fear that once the US starts pouring money in it will loose its charm. Of course, the country really needs the money. Everyone commented on how much they enjoyed a Gate 1 tour & would use them again

Carol S. Fleming Isle, FL
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, July 2016
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This was a good trip, nice people in the group and an eye opener on the conditions in Cuba.

Mikhail B. Huntsville, AL
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, June 2016
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It was the best! I am not prone to group guided tours. I have always ventured out on my own. Heidi and her team really made the trip informative and fun. We had a wonderful group synergy and I'm sure that that has a lot to do with the guides. I loved Cuba and all the places we got to experience. I especially loved the heart behind the trip. I am very glad you asked people to bring gifts, which I did. It was wonderful to give. Heidi really has a big heart too, and I commend her on the deep connections she has cultivated during her years of travel there. I am recommending Gate 1 to any and every one who expresses an interest in going to Cuba.

Lisa M. Baltimore, MD
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, May 2016
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I could not be more pleased. This was one of the best travel experiences I have ever had (country #38 for me) and you guys did a great job. Andrew was a great guide and tirelessly worked to make it the best trip possible. I do not know when, but I would definitely book another trip through your company in a heartbeat. Truly a great experience and my entire party was extremely pleased.

Michael Z. Fitchburg, WI
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, April 2016
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The trip was a fantastic journey. My daughter and I loved every minute of it. Andrew our guide was terrific. Cuba is a fascinating beautiful place. Meeting the people of Cuba made the trip so special , i am so happy to have been part of a special group that got to see Cuba in its time warped state soon to change very rapidly. Thank you for all your help.

Theresa G. Syosset, NY
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, April 2016
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Absolutely amazing! Cuba is a wonderful gem. The tour was great- accommodations, travel, and especially the food. Sergio is an outstanding, very knowledgable, and always helpful guide. He always went the extra mile to make sure everyone was satisfied. Honestly he is one of Gate 1 best assest!! I am already considering another trip to Cuba with your agency. Would just prefer a little more down time with the tour schedule. Overall one of the best tours I've ever been on in my 30 years of world travel!!!

Ajay K. Fort Myers, FL
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, April 2016
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The trip was fantastic; all I have come to expect form gate 1! Our Tour Guide, Pam, was very professional, extremely attentive and organized, pleasant, and just all around top notch. i would highly recommend her to any of your clients. our local guide, Romiro, was also very professional, knowledgeable, and helpful. Also top notch. As was the driver. Activities, accommodations, "extra's" they were able to have us do were all quite comfortable. While many things could go awry traveling to a place like Cuba, we were fortunate in that nothing did. Nothing at all! Thanks again for asking.

Victor G. Schenectady, NY
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, April 2016
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Amazing!!!! Cuba was everything I expected. The group was larger than I would have liked (37) but still went well and was well organized and we got to see everything on our itinerary plus a little more. Our tour guide Pam was fabulous and very patient and our Cuban guide, Ramiro, was a wealth of knowledge. Favorite items included the old styler car ride and the visit to the children's school. The Barber community project was also pretty inspirational. Truly a beautiful, educational and historical experience.

Robin W. Mobile, AL
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, March 2016
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The trip was fantastic. It was also a whirlwind. So many things to see in three days! We felt we got a great view of the country. The artistic values (visual & music) were everywhere and so enjoyable. Food was great. Being in Havana during President Obama's visit was icing on the cake. But the best was the people of Cuba. They are kind and considerate of one another and to us. A most enjoyable trip!

Patricia M. Saint Louis, MO
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, March 2016
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The trip was fantastic. It was also a whirlwind. So many things to see in three days! We felt we got a great view of the country. The artistic values (visual & music) were everywhere and so enjoyable. Food was great. Being in Havana during President Obama's visit was icing on the cake. But the best was the people of Cuba. They are kind and considerate of one another and to us. A most enjoyable trip!

Patricia M. Saint Louis, MO
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, March 2016
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The trip was great - good food, fun itinerary and a wonderful tour guide.

Linda R. Wilmington, DE
5 Day Havana, Face to Face with Miami, February 2016
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The trip was very educational and excellent, our Gate 1 travel guide Andrew was very helpful and provided us with very interesting information. In addition the local guide Johnie was extremely knowledgeable and enthusiastic.

Stephen N. Great Neck, NY
Cuba, Face to Face, July 2013
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It was great, very educational and saw a lot of interesting things. The people are warm and friendly and our Cuban guide, Ari, made the trip even more special. She was able to shed a lot of light on Cuba. I learned so much. The food, rum drinks and dancing made it a memorable trip. I would return again. Heidi was very helpful and planned some surprises for the group, which were fun. I will be recommending this tour to anyone who wants to go to Cuba.

Lorraine S. Boulder, CO
Cuba, Face to Face, July 2013
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We had a wonderful time. Our guide, Heidi, was excellent, and the itinerary really gave us the ability to see real life of the people of Cuba. I really liked the small group tour, and we'll be booking with Gate 1 again.

Nanci B. Auburn, AL
Cuba, Face to Face, June 2013
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It was fabulous and full of surprises. It's like an unspoiled paradise for American tourists. Nevertheless you should encourage as many Americans as possible to go at this time. It's such an opportunity, and actually kind of an emotionally moving experience, not only based on the beauty of the country and its cities, but also the spirit of its people (who clearly love Americans). We had 2 superb guides Heidi, from the Midwest and Ariadna, from Cuba, who did all they could possibly do to help us realize the full experience. Our driver, Luis, also was outstanding, both for driving skills and as genial companion.

David C. Baltimore, MD
Cuba, Face to Face, June 2013
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The trip was great! Heidi, our tour guide, was such a wonderful tour orchestrator and person. She made all of us comfortable immediately and we all just had a super time for the entire 8 days in Cuba. We also very much liked our Cuban guide and our bus driver, Luis, was the best!! He was amazing. We are so happy we went on this trip. We can't wait to go on another.

Leslye G. Inverness, FL
Cuba, Face to Face, June 2013
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We had a FANTASTIC trip! Heidi, our American guide, and Ariadna, our Cuban guide, were both amazing: extremely organized, competent, informed, engaging and funny too. We were very impressed with how well the whole trip was organized, all the amazing places we saw each day and the amount of history and information we learned each day from both Ariadna and Heidi. Mostly they were both so fun as a team and kept us all entertained and informed.

We did end up missing our connection in Miami due to the Cuba flight leaving almost an hour late. But I must say Heidi was most helpful in arranging another overnight at Crowne Plaza hotel and we caught another flight in the morning. So it all worked out. We want to go again to Cuba! Thanks for a great trip. I would recommend Gate 1 Travel to friends.

Angelina W. Portland, OR
Cuba, Face to Face, June 2013
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Our trip to Cuba was fantastic. Despite heat and humidity, we had an amazing experience. Eye-opening. The trip is not for everyone, but for those not stuck on creature comforts, I can't say enough about what we learned and how terrific our two guides were, the Gate 1 coordinator and the local guide.

Janet M. Concord, MA
Cuba, Face to Face, June 2013
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We had a FANTASTIC trip! Heidi, our American guide, and Ariadna, our Cuban guide, were both amazing: extremely organized, competent, informed, engaging and funny too. We were very impressed with how well the whole trip was organized, all the amazing places we saw each day and the amount of history and information we learned each day from both Ariadna and Heidi. Mostly they were both so fun as a team and kept us all entertained and informed.

We did end up missing our connection in Miami due to the Cuba flight leaving almost an hour late. But I must say Heidi was most helpful in arranging another overnight at Crowne Plaza hotel and we caught another flight in the morning. So it all worked out. We want to go again to Cuba! Thanks for a great trip. I would recommend Gate 1 Travel to friends.

Angelina W. Portland, OR
Cuba, Face to Face, April 2013
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Trip was great! Very informative. Gives one a new and different aspect of Cuba and its people.  Our tour leader, Ernesto, was great. To sum it up, our experience with Gate 1 was superb. Thanks again for a wonderful experience.

Herbert H. Lake Worth, FL
Cuba, Face to Face, April 2013
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Trip to Cuba was just great and probably one of the best Gate 1 tours I have taken since 2000. Ernesto, our guide was organized, articulate and well informed of the history and life in Cuba. He was also very good in keeping our group on time. What I learned about Cuba, the Cuban people and their history was not what American people have been told about Cuba, Cuban life and Cuban history. Cuba was such a beautiful place with friendly people, many beautifully kept historical sites and really fresh, good food.

I have taken quite a few Gate 1 trips/tours and I would highly recommend Cuba through the Gate 1 to many people.

Ginger L. Fresno, CA

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