UPDATE Feb. 15, 2016: USA Today reports U.S. airlines can “begin applying for more air routes” to Cuba as of Feb. 16 but still no word on when scheduled service will start.
Dec. 17, 2015: “The United States and Cuba have reached an agreement to resume commercial air travel between the two countries for the first time in more than half a century,” says CNN, citing a State Department announcement.
LISTEN: Travel expert Rick Seaney with the latest details.
Flights to Cuba will Resume – But When?
This good news for anyone interested in going to Cuba. Although tourism is still banned by U.S. law, there are plenty of legitimate loopholes that allow many to travel to the island nation (and you can learn more about that in the Cuba Travel Guide). The bad news is no one is saying precisely when airlines will begin direct flights to Cuba.
American Airlines Jumps In
According to another news report, American Airlines “expects to submit a U.S.-Cuba service proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation” which the carrier hopes to lead to flights sometime in 2016 and we expect other airlines will announce their intentions shortly.
What’s the hold-up? According to CNN, it has to do with unspecified “other steps the Federal Aviation Administration needs to take to ensure certain safety regulations are in place” and it’s unclear how long that will take. For now, charter flights remain the best option.
But U.S. airline service to Cuba is coming. And we’ll let you know when it will happen as soon as the information is available.