US  Flights to Cuba Have Started!

Commercial US flights to Cuba started on 09/12/16. JetBlue had the first regularly scheduled flights (non-charter) in over 50 years. American Airlines followed soon after. The Department of Transportation approved over a 100 flights from US to Cuba, so more new routes will be started in Fall and Winter of 2016.

US Flights to Cuba Allow Americans to Visit Cities like Caibarien, Cuba
US flights to Cuba allow Americans to visit cities like Caibarien, Cuba.

Currently (in October 2016)  Americans have nine non-Havana Cuban cities to land in. These nine cities give visitors a large variety of destinations, beyond Havana. Beaches galore, colonial towns, revolutionary cities, gorgeous tobacco growing country. take your pick of cities from list below.

These Cuban destinations are served by 6 US Airlines from 5 US departure cities. A little complicated, but is becoming more untangled as airlines are actually publishing and booking the flights. Not all will be operational until year end.

See the latest list of US Airlines and their Cuban Destinations that I posted in September. These are the Non-Havana flights that were announced first.

US to Havana flights took longer to approve because more airlines wanted to go there than allotted slots. These were just approved on the same day the first flight arrived in Santa Clara. See my post with a Chart of US to Havana Flights.

The flights approved by the DOT gives the Cuban Capitol at least 1 daily non-stop flight from 10 US cities. These have not all started yet but the Obama administration wants them up and running by year end.  Time is near!

Get updates on US flights to Cuba in my blog posts on US to Cuba Flight News.  This page will also be updated when US flights are fully operating and settled down.

Which US Flight to Cuba to Pick?

Cuba is not a little Caribbean island with a single destination city. It is big; it is over 700 miles long and has 14 provinces and multiple international airports. Every part of Cuba is different and offers varied experiences.

You will want to visit Havana of course, but you may want the majority of your time to be elsewhere. Decide the places you want to visit then pick your Cuban destination airport. see list of destination cities below.

US flights to Santa Clara, Cuba allow Americans to visit the Che Guevara Mausoleum.
US flights to Santa Clara, Cuba allow Americans to visit the Che Guevara Mausoleum.

US Flights are Going to these Cuban Cities:

  • Havana (HAV) Jose Marti airport. Havana, the heart and soul of Cuba.
  • Holguin (HOG) Lots of beaches, beach resorts, all-inclusive resorts and ecotourism.
  • Camaguey (CMN) Beaches of course and the tangled fascinating streets of the city.
  • Santa Clara (SNU) Santa Clara is the Revolutionary City. It also serves as gateway to resorts on the northern keys (Cayos)
  • Varadero (VRA) Popular beach resort of Varadero
  • Cayo Coco (CCC) Serves the beach location of the lower Cayos

See Cuba Destinations and Map for location of the cities above.

Streets of Old Havana, Cuba (Habana Viejo)
Direct flights to Havana allow easy access to Old Havana (Habana Vieja)

US Origination Flights

The DOT had two goals in establishing flight schedules: to allow easier access of Cuban-Americans  to Cuba, and to connect major US hubs to various cities in Cuba. Thus most flights are out of Florida, but several other origination cities were chosen too.

It is logical that most flights are out of Florida of course, because of its proximity and Cuban population. That means for now you will most likely fly to Florida first. Having a night in Miami is not a bad thing though; take Uber  to South Beach and enjoy the ambiance. You’ll hear the “Cuban style” of Spanish spoken here too.

US Flights to Cuba can be found in my blog under Cuba Flight News

See my posts on: US Flights to Havana and US Flights to Non-Havana cities.