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U.S. to Cuba travel expands ahead of expected lifting of travel embargo

Flying into the Communist governed Island of Cuba ceased as long ago as 1962 when a trade embargo was implemented by the U.S. government and a long cold war has existed since that time. However, relations between the countries have thawed, particularly since travel to the Island was relaxed by President Obama to allow certain American citizens and Cuban Americans to go on specially sanctioned travel.

U.S. airline JetBlue already flies to Cuba and is planning to add a second charter flight from the John F Kennedy airport in New York, non-stop operating every Tuesday commencing on December 1st this year. Commercial air travel is expected to be granted in the near future as representatives of both countries are scheduled to hold aviation talks on Monday and Tuesday in Havana. This is when it is hoped that officials with successfully negotiate a new civil aviation agreement.

The new initiative by JetBlue is in partnership with Cuba Travel Services, who were granted a licence to operate by the U.S. government to operate and arrange flights to Cuba. Presently both Cuba Travel Services and JetBlue along with other charter flights already operate services from Florida to Havana.

None of this would have been possible had it not been for President Obama announcing a détente with Cuba, this has allowed U.S. airlines to Cuba without the need for special permission from the Treasury Department. Currently tourism is not allowed to Cuba, excepting those with special permission along with Cuban Americans.

If an agreement is reached a large market for travel to the Island is expected, particularly if the United States lifts either the tourism ban or the embargo, currently both of which are currently pending in the U.S congress.

Picture : Fotos593 / Shutterstock.com

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