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Cuba

Capital
Havana
Time Zone
GMT - 4
Telephone Services
Country Code: 53
Outgoing Code: 00. (From Havana only. All other international calls must go through the operator.)
Emergency Telephone Numbers
All services - 26811
Tourist Information
Cuba Tourist Office, 167 High Holborn, London, WC1V 6PA Tel: (020) 7240 6655. Fax: (020) 7240 6656.
Passport Information
Passports must be valid for at least 6 months beyond the length of stay. Return ticket required. Requirements may be subject to short-term change. Contact Embassy before departure.
Visa Information
Required by all except: Holders of a tourist card. Nationals of Barbados for stays of up to 1 days. Nationals of CIS (except Uzbekistan), Czech Republic, Hungary, Mongolia, Namibia, Slovak Republic. Nationals of certain countries travelling on certain kinds of official business. - Enquire at the consulate.
Health Information
Polio, Typhoid: Low risk present.
Other Health Risks: Rabies
Food & Drink
Water is untreated and not safe to drink.
Currency
Cuban Peso (Cub$) = 100 centavos.
At official tourist shops purchases can only be made in US Dollars.
Exchange: Should only be made at authorised money exchanges as there are severe penalties for black market money exchanging.
NOTE Keep all exchange receipts which will be required when making purchases. Do not enter the place or date details on any cheque until ready to make the transaction or the cheque will be refused. The import of local currency is prohibited. Generally a maximum of Cub$ 10 can be reconverted to foreign currency when leaving on presentation of an official exchange form.
Visa and MasterCard are widely accepted. US Dollars (but not drawn from a US bank) and Sterling are accepted in travellers cheques.
ATM availability: Unavailable.
Cost of Living
Not as expensive as some of the other Caribbean Islands.
Languages
Spanish. English and French may also be spoken.
Weather
Hot all year round. Raining season May - Oct. Hurricane possible Aug - Nov. Cooler between Nov - Apr.
Electricity
110/220 volts Ac 60 Hz. American style plugs are used except for large hotels, which may use European type plugs
Post
Can take up to several weeks.
Transport
FLIGHTS: Cubana operates scheduled services between the main towns. It is essential to book in advance. Avoid flights on older soviet aircraft as some risk is involved. Transatlantic and some regional flights are serviced by more modern DC-10 aircraft.
Special Information
The tourist industry is rapidly developing with a growing tolerance of Western influences. Visitors should be alert for bag snatchers and other street theft especially in the area of Old Havana and major tourist sites. Do not carry large amounts of cash. Avoid restricted areas and military zones which are NOT always well signposted. Shorts should only be worn at the beach or pool. The penalties for drug trafficking are severe.
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