Travel advice & practical information for travelogue:
'Backpacking in Cuba'
Consulate General of Cuba
5353 Dundas St. West, Suite 401
Toronto ON M9B 6H8
Tel.: 416-234 8181
Fax: 416-234 2754
16, Rue de Presles
Tel.: 01-4567 5535
Fax: 01-4567 1262
Outside the touristic areas (mainly Varadero) people only speak Spanish. If you want to travel around in the country, you have to take a basic course in Spanish or bring a good phrase book.
Traveler cheques issued by American Express are not accepted. Thomas Cook's are, in BFI banks. Most larger cities have one. Havana has several. You have to pay commission on those checks though.
It's probably better to bring cash. The local peso can only be used in the streets, for example if you buy food at a snack stall. Bring either euros or dollars, in small denominations.
Safety and security
Traveling in some countries or regions can be dangerous. That isn't always a reason not to go there, but part of preparing well for a trip includes finding out about possible risks.
The CIA World Factbook: Cuba is a good place to look. Of course you always should consult your own country's Foreign Department web site.
Find current information on the web site of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Always consult your family doctor and your country's Health Department web site.
Plan your trip to Cuba online
Through online reservation systems like À la Carte Vacations you can book airline tickets, hotels, rental cars and holiday houses. You can build a fly-drive itinerary with maximum flexibility, book a flight plus a hotel hotel for a night or weekend. Without the limitations of package deals from travel organisations and most times for a much better price.