From Application to Arrival: Navigating the Cuban Non Immigrant Visa Process

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While Cuba has grown to be a popular travel destination for tourists seeking to enjoy its warm climate and golden beaches it takes some careful planning and important paperwork to get there.

For almost all travelers to Cuba, a tourist visa will be needed.

And understanding the visa application process is your first step to a successful trip.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

If you are ready to apply for your Cuban tourist visa, we are here to help you.

Let’s look more closely at the Cuban visa applicant process and make sure that you understand which visa you need and how to apply so that you can plan for the effortless Cuban experience you’ve been hoping for.

Understanding the Cuban Non-Immigrant Visa: What is it and Who Needs One?

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Navigating the Cuban travel landscape can be a challenge, especially when it comes to deciphering the difference between the various terms used for the documents required.

Here is a breakdown of the different documents and who needs which one:

1. Cuban Visa:

An actual visa is the most formal type of document that may be needed to enter Cuba.

While most people will not need this level of formality to enter the country, there are a handful of nationalities that will, including US citizens who require Cuban Visa for US citizens for entry.

  • Afghanistan
  • Bangladesh
  • Cameroon
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • India
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Nepal
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Sierra Leona
  • Somalia
  • Sri Lanka
  • Syria
  • Uzbekistan
  • Yemen
 
  • Afghanistan
  • Bangladesh
  • Cameroon
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • India
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Nepal
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Sierra Leona
  • Somalia
  • Sri Lanka
  • Syria
  • Uzbekistan
  • Yemen
 

(Remember: Applying for nonimmigrant visas is a more involved process than applying for a tourist card and you’ll want to check with the embassy in Havana, your country’s embassy, or your local national visa center to make sure you have all the paperwork in place if a Cuba visa is needed for your travel.

That said, here are some of the most common documents that will most likely be required:

  • Original Passport (with at least 6 months validity)
  • 2 scanned color photographs
  • 2 visa application forms
  • A cover letter, explaining the purpose of your travel to Cuba
  • An original bank statement, stamped and updated for the last 3 months
  • Air tickets and proof of return flight back to your home country
  • Hotel reservations and/or proof of your accommodations during the entirety of your stay
  • Birth certificates for children 
  • Invitation letter (if you are applying for a business visa)
  • Yellow Fever vaccination card

While these documents are quite standard when applying for a Cuban visa, the most precise and up-to-date list of necessary documents will always be available at the closest Cuban embassy near you. Here is a site that can help you find yours.

Cuban Tourist Card

The Cuban tourist card is the more common document that is needed for most travelers to enter the country of Cuba.

While it is common to see this document referred to as a “Cuban visa,” the process to acquire this document is different.

  • Albania
  • Amsterdam
  • Andora
  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Cayenne
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Denmark
  • Dublin
  • Ecuador
  • Estonia
  • Faroe
  • Fiji Island
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Guatemala
  • Haiti
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Latvia
  • Libya
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Mauritiana
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Morocco
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • North Korea
  • Norway
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • San Marino
  • Senegal
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Vatican City
  • Venezuela
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Albania
  • Amsterdam
  • Andora
  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Cayenne
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Denmark
  • Dublin
  • Ecuador
  • Estonia
  • Faroe
  • Fiji Island
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Guatemala
  • Haiti
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Latvia
  • Libya
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Mauritiana
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Morocco
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • North Korea
  • Norway
  • Panama
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • San Marino
  • Senegal
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Vatican City
  • Venezuela
  • Saudi Arabia

(Remember: as with the Cuban visa, the countries that need a Cuban tourist card can change. Make sure you check with your embassy or your local nonimmigrant visa services organization to confirm your country’s current status for travel to Cuba.)

Your Key to

Paradise!

Traveling from a NON-US airport? You’re in! Explore Cuba for up to 90 days within 180 days of issuance.

3. Cuban Nationals Visa

For anyone who was born in Cuba or is a Cuban permanent resident, they will not need a visa or a tourist card to re-enter their homeland. Tourist cards and immigrant visas are solely for those who do not hold a Cuban passport.

I Need a Cuban Tourist Visa...Which One?

You’ve consulted the lists and double-checked the provided information with your local embassy and/or immigrant visa processing center. You know that your trip to Cuba will require a Cuban tourist card.

But now the question arises:

What type of Cuban tourist card do I need?

Cuban tourist cards come in two forms: one is the Pink Tourist Card and one is the Green Tourist Card.

Let’s make it clear who needs which one and why.

The Pink Cuba Tourist Card:

The Pink Tourist Card is for anyone whose trip to Cuba will begin from the United States.

This means that — regardless of your nationality — if you come from a country that is on the list for the Cuban tourist card, you’ll apply for a Pink Tourist Card if your travel originates from United States soil.

Example: You are a French citizen, but you live in the United States. You will apply for a Pink Tourist Card.

The Green Cuba Tourist Card:

The Green Tourist Card is for all travelers who are departing from countries other than the United States.

Even if you hold a U.S. passport, you will apply for the Green Tourist Card if you are traveling to Cuba from a different country.

Example: You live in New York but have been in Europe before your trip to Cuba. You will apply for a Green Tourist Card.

Cuba Pink

Tourist Card

For US nationals or those departing from a US airport. Explore Cuba for up to 90 days within 180 days of issuance.

Time to Apply: The Steps for Obtaining Your Cuban Visa

Navigating the visa application process is easiest when you have the specific steps laid out in front of you.

Identify the specific visa you need based on your travel purpose. Refer back to the previous section on “Understanding the Cuban Non-Immigrant Visa” for details on different categories and eligibility requirements.

The exact requirements might vary depending on your visa type, but generally, you’ll need:

  • Valid passport: With at least six months of sufficient validity beyond your intended stay in Cuba.
  • Completed visa application form: Complete this online from our website. Remember to be specific as to whether or not you need the Pink Tourist Card or the Green Tourist Card.
  • The required fee: This can vary based on which tourist card you need as wel as shipping fees to your country. Refer back to our site for help.

Proof of travel insurance: Covering medical treatment and medical related expenses while in Cuba. Proof of travel insurance that covers medical expenses during your stay in Cuba is a must.

At Easy Tourist Card, we make it easy to pay for your tourist card while online. Our site offers secure payment options, including credit card payments.

After submitting your application, you’ll just need to wait for your tourist card to be delivered. This will usually take 5-7 business days.

Other Questions You May Have:

By following the above steps for your Cuban tourist visa, there’s an excellent chance that everything will go smoothly. That said, you may have some additional questions throughout the process.

Here are some frequent ones:

A pink chat box of letter Q inside

1. How long does it take to get a visa?

A green chat box of letter A inside

Processing times can vary based on the time of year and your country of origin. For most tourist visas, we ask our customers to plan on receiving their card in less than a week.

A pink chat box of letter Q inside

2. Will my tourist card be completed when I receive it?

A green chat box of letter A inside

When your tourist card arrives, you'll notice that there is information you will need to fill in. At Easy Tourist Card, we will provide you with a specific guide to ensure everything is filled out correctly, in order to not cause any delays in your trip.

A pink chat box of letter Q inside

3. What if I have questions about the card after it arrives?

A green chat box of letter A inside

Using Easy Tourist Card for your travel needs means that we take the guesswork out of the process for you. That said, if you still have questions after you receive your documents, feel free to reach out to us. We will always get back to you within 24 hours.

For an Effortless Trip...Choose Easy Tourist Card as Your Travel Companion

By following the above steps for your Cuban tourist visa, there’s an excellent chance that everything will go smoothly. That said, you may have some additional questions throughout the process.

Here are some frequent ones:

A couple tourist in their travel outfits looking at a map.

Travel is one of life’s biggest joys. But it can also come with its own host of obstacles and frustrations.

At Easy Tourist Card, our goal is simple.

We want to make your pre-trip preparation experience as effortless as possible, while also ensuring that your travel documents are accurate. We will work with you every step of the way.

If you’re ready to plan your trip to Cuba, start with Easy Tourist Card. We have all the information you need to make your Cuban adventure exactly what you want it to be.

Cuba Green Tourist Card

Traveling from a NON-US airport? You’re in! Explore Cuba for up to 90 days within 180 days of issuance.

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