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Guide of 65 cities, towns and villages listing some 500 of the best casas particulares [aka B&B]

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Casilda near Trinidad Santa Clara

Today's Flight Arrivals
HavanaVaraderoHolguinCamagueyCayo Coco

Cuban Farmers impacted by embargo
A bipartisan delegation of agriculture commissioners
from seven U.S. states
- three Democratic and four Republican -
traveled to Cuba to meet Cuban farmers and explore business opportunities.

But they say their hands are tied due to U.S. sanctions,
which make trade and investment extremely difficult if not impossible.

Says Indiana Ag.Director Don Lamb:
“We're close neighbors and there ought to be opportunities for us to trade.”

Belly of The Beast, youtube 08.04.24

Cuba is witnessing an economic crisis that has turned the island clock
back 30 years, to the so-called "special period".
And so, a new mass exodus of Cubans is underway,
the largest in many a decade.

Notwithstanding, the number of tourists (Canada still in the lead)
increased in 2023: 2.1 million between Jan. and Nov., +158.1%
as compared to 2022, but 48% less than the same period in 2019,
the year preceding the “plandemic”.

Nevertheless, Cubans suffer hardship and severe shortages
of everything from basic necessities (eggs, bread, sugar, butter, meat)
to transportation fuel and medicine and construction materials.

Bottom line, many say that the worst shortage
- for Cubans who cannot afford exile - is that of hope.

For "all-inclusive" tourists and the many new
5-star hotels that have appeared as quickly as the
new variants of "plandemia", this does not pose a major problem.

But for travelers in casas particulares where rooms are rented,
the owners no longer serve meals or only a very basic breakfast.

One of many examples of very affordable restaurant
due to the evergrowing street rates of exchange.

Travelers must therefore find (and reserve) a table
every evening in the numerous restaurants
which elaborate their daily menus according
to the meat, fish and vegetables and fruits available.

Arriving visitors may bring unlimited quantities* - without customs fees -
of food and hygiene products. * Max. 50kg (110 lbs.)

The best recap of 2023 and one outlook for 2024
has been published by
Read it >
here < in English.

A good source cuban vitamins

Viazul bus (intercity) tickets can only be booked
on the internet - by the traveller or the Viazul agent at the Viazul station
- and can only be paid by credit card. In advance (sometimes 24 hours ahead)
or minimum 3 hours before departure.

••• Beware of scams by bagage handlers/ticket vendors/drivers. •••

:: Official exchange rates > on CADECA < ::

State-run enterprises and banks use official exchange rates,
but the superior services offered by private businesses
generally reflect the more favorable black market exchange rates.

US Dollars / Euros are the most interchangeable
currencies and the ones preferred by private Cuban shops / home owners.
You can also use and exchange Canadian dollars
and pounds sterling, Swiss pounds and Japanese Yen.

The street rates got better for tourists in 2023 ... (Oct. above)

... and better still in April 24 but worse for the Cuban CUP.

More on ElToqué's web site here.

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What do we live for, if not to make life less difficult for each other ? 21.04.2024