Important COVID-19 Travel
Under current UK COVID-19 restrictions, you must stay at home. You must not travel, including abroad, unless you have a legally permitted reason to do so. It is illegal to travel abroad for holidays and other leisure purposes.
If you intend to travel to the UK from abroad, including UK nationals returning home, you must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result taken up to 3 days before departure. If you do not comply (and you do not have a valid exemption) your airline or carrier may refuse you boarding and/or you may be fined on arrival.
When you enter England from abroad (except Ireland), you must follow the new requirements for quarantining and taking additional COVID-19 tests. For those travelling from a country on the banned travel list you will be required to quarantine in a hotel. Different rules apply for arrivals into England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
If you are legally permitted to travel abroad, check our advice on your country of destination. Some other countries have closed borders, and may further restrict movement or bring in new rules including testing requirements with little warning.
If you are arriving in the UK from Cuba on or after 4am on 18 January you will need to self-isolate on your arrival, unless you have a valid exemption. Check the latest guidance for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales
Travel to Cuba is subject to entry restrictions
- From 10 January 2021, everyone travelling to Cuba must have a certified proof of a negative result of a PCR test taken within 72 hours before travel at an accredited testing centre in the UK or the country you are travelling from. Children are not exempt. You should not use the NHS testing services to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country. You should arrange to take a private test. You will still be given a PCR test on arrival in Cuba
- Jose Marti International Airport (Havana Airport) re-opened to commercial and charter flights on 15 November 2020. All other airports in Cuba are open for commercial and charter flights
- Everyone arriving into Cuba will have a PCR test on arrival
- From 6 February 2021, everyone arriving in Cuba will be taken to an isolation centre (may be a hotel) until they have a second PCR test with a negative result. Non-residents have to cover the costs of transport, the stay and test(s), which will have to be paid by credit card. You should bring cash in case your credit card does not work
- Tourists arriving on holiday charter flights will have a PCR test on arrival and will be transferred to their holiday resort
See Entry requirements for more information before you plan to travel.
Preparing for your return journey to the UK
If you’re returning to the UK from overseas, you will need to:
- provide your journey and contact details before you travel
If your return journey to the UK transits another country, you should check whether it is subject to a travel ban or any other additional requirements. If so, contact your travel provider.
Check our advice on foreign travel during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and sign up for email alerts for this travel advice.
If you’re planning travel to Cuba, find out what you need to know about coronavirus there in the Coronavirus section. The measures in place may differ between and within Provinces and Municipalities according to the level of COVID-19 cases and transmission. The situation and measures can change quickly. Anyone not complying with local rules, including self-isolation in hotels when required, can be fined.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. COVID insurance cover is compulsory for travel to Cuba. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.
For information about COVID-19 vaccines, see the Coronavirus page.
The British Embassy in is Havana open to the public by appointment only. If you need emergency consular assistance you should telephone the Embassy +53 7 214 2200 and select the option for emergency consular assistance (note there is a short time delay to connect to the officer). We are receiving an unprecedented number of calls so it may take some time to be connected. We are also receiving a high volume of email enquiries and may not be able to deal with your individual enquiry straight away.
The Cuban Convertible Peso (CUC) was removed from circulation on 1 January 2021. The Cuban National Peso (CUP) is now the currency in use. See Money.
The hurricane season in Cuba normally runs from June to November. You should monitor weather updates and track the progress of approaching storms. See Natural disasters.
In September 2019, the Cuban government announced that it was taking measures to manage electricity and fuel supplies in view of limited stocks and deliveries of oil. Government measures included prioritising supplies for essential services, and reducing transport services. The situation had normalised but services and stocks are now affected by Coronavirus.
Crime levels are low and mainly in the form of opportunistic theft. See Crime
Be cautious when travelling in Cuba. Driving standards are variable. See Road travel
UK health authorities have classified Cuba as having a risk of dengue, and Zika virus transmission. For more information and advice, visit the website of the National Travel Health Network and Centre website. You should take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.
Although there’s no recent history of terrorism in Cuba, attacks can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism
Most visits to Cuba are trouble free.
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.