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Northwesta319
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Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:51 am

I thought Americans could not- but with flights leaving from JFK and MIA, and how easy it is to drive/fly to Canada, but if Americans are not allowed to enter Cuba, why would there be nonstops from places in the United States such as MIA?
 
A330Fan1
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:57 am

Hey Northwesta319

Americans are allowed to travel to Cuba, and I believe there are flights that end in Cuba from Los Angeles...a friend of mine traveled there recently, and I know someone who studied there over the summer (both American citizens from my home town, LA)

-Regards, A330Fan1
 
pilottim747
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:04 am

I believe Americans can go there but they are still banned from spending US dollars there.

pilottim747
Aviation Photographers & Enthusiasts--Coordinate your life.
 
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:04 am

American citizens are allowed to TRAVEL to Cuba, but are not allowed to SPEND MONEY there unless they fall under a special license issued by the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC).
 
ntspelich
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:14 am

However, getting an license from the Treasury Department isn't that difficult. Well, at least if you're a student. Many universisities have blanket licenses, allowing anyone associated with them to freely travel to and from Cuba as well as spend money there.

There are also flights to Cuba from somewhere in South Florida, maybe FLL, operated by Gulfstream Connection. As far as going through YYZ is concerned, when I was looking into going two years ago, I remember the HAV-YYZ flight arrived sometime after 12:30am, making for a fun night of chair sleeping.

Getting a Cuban visa is another story. I finally gave up after about 3 months when I tried to get an academic one to do some research. It's odd to me that it took so long, given the fact that Semester at Sea lands a boat there twice a year full of kids and no one that I've ever talked to from that program had any problems.

NS
United 717 heavy, you're facing the wrong way. Any chance you can powerback to get off of my deice pad?
 
ScottB
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:20 am

The U.S. Department of State is an excellent source of information on this subject; check out http://travel.state.gov/cuba.html to find out the particulars.

To quote:

The following categories of travelers are permitted to spend money for Cuban travel and to engage in other transactions directly incident to the purpose of their travel under a general license, without the need to obtain special permission from the U.S. Treasury Department:

- U.S. and foreign government officials traveling on official business, including representatives of international organizations of which the U.S. is a member;

- Journalists and supporting broadcasting or technical personnel regularly employed by a news reporting organization;

- Persons making a once-a-year visit to close family relatives in circumstances of humanitarian need;

- Full-time professionals whose travel transactions are directly related to professional research in their professional areas, provided that their research: (1) is of a noncommercial academic nature; (2) comprises a full work schedule in Cuba, and (3) has a substantial likelihood of public dissemination;

- Full-time professionals whose travel transactions are directly related to attendance at professional meetings or conferences in Cuba organized by an international professional organization, institution, or association that regularly sponsors such meetings or conferences in other countries;

- Amateur or semi-professional athletes or teams traveling to Cuba to participate in an athletic competition held under the auspices of the relevant international sports federation.

The Department of the Treasury may issue licenses on a case-by-case basis authorizing Cuba travel-related transactions directly incident to marketing, sales negotiation, accompanied delivery, and servicing of exports and reexports that appear consistent with the licensing policy of the Department of Commerce. The sectors in which U.S. citizens may sell and service products to Cuba include agricultural commodities, telecommunications activities, medicine, and medical devices. The Treasury Department will also consider requests for specific licenses for humanitarian travel not covered by the general license, educational exchanges, and religious activities by individuals or groups affiliated with a religious organization.

Unless otherwise exempted or authorized, any person subject to U.S. jurisdiction who engages in any travel-related transaction in Cuba violates the regulations. Persons not licensed to engage in travel-related transactions may travel to Cuba without violating the regulations only if all Cuba-related expenses are covered by a person not subject to U.S. jurisdiction and provided that the traveler does not provide any service to Cuba or a Cuban national. Such travel is called "fully-hosted" travel. Such travel may not by made on a Cuban carrier or aboard a direct flight between the United States and Cuba.

Failure to comply with Department of Treasury regulations may result in civil penalties and criminal prosecution upon return to the United States.

Note that the Department of the Treasury's overview states:

"Any person subject to U.S. jurisdiction determined to have
traveled to Cuba without an OFAC general or specific license is
presumed to have engaged in prohibited travel-related
transactions. In order to overcome this presumption, any
traveler who claims to have been fully hosted or otherwise not to
have engaged in any travel-related transactions must be able to
provide a signed explanatory statement, accompanied by relevant
supporting documentation, showing that no transactions were
engaged in by the traveler or on the traveler's behalf by any
person subject to U.S. jurisdiction, stating that payments made
by any non-U.S. host were not in exchange for services provided,
and providing a day-to-day account of financial transactions
waived or entered into on behalf of the traveler. A fully-hosted
traveler must also provide an original signed statement from the
sponsor or host, specific to the traveler, confirming that the
travel was fully-hosted and the reasons for the travel. For a
complete list of all evidence necessary to rebut the presumption
of travel-related transactions, see Section 515.420 of the
Regulations. Fully-hosted travelers are also prohibited from
providing any unauthorized services to Cuba or to Cuban nationals
or within Cuba."

[Edited 2003-09-25 02:30:25]
 
ThreeWests
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:32 am

Not long ago I was in Tijuana and saw sign outside a travel agency advertising airfare to Cuba. So being curious I went in to ask about the flights. The agent told me that Mexicana and Cubana flew weekly charter flights from Tijuana to Havana. When I thanked him for the info and started to leave he said in a hushed voice "I sell tickets to a lot of Americans so you don't have to worry - its completely safe" I don't remember the price but it seems to me it was very reasonable. Has anyone flown this route?
If you can read this your flying too close
 
mopac
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:33 am

Are Americans allowed to go to Cuba?

Sure, and you can ride on one of these to boot:

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Brian Stevenson - SPOT THIS!



It's all perfectly legal Big grin so long at you tip the customs guy in Havana and the customs guy in Cancun (on the way back) $20 each not to stamp your passport... Or, so I've been told.  Innocent
 
expressjetphx
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 9:40 am

Yes, Ntspelich, Gulfstream operates a Cuba service out of Florida. It is a MIA-Havana charter. I believe Continental also offers a MIA-Havana charter using the 733.
 
ibe1238
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 10:03 am

Last year I flew non-rev with Mexicana de Aviación from Cancún to La Habana and in the plane were some americans. I stayed in the MELIA COHIBA and some guests were also american.
One thing that I don't understand. Why do Americans need a permission from the Treasaury Dptment? I ask this, because tourist in CUBA can only use American dollar, we cannot use PESOS to pay.
 
KQ777
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 10:42 am

Although Americans can travel on the special visas listed above, most tourists do not have these visas and travel via a third country, usually Canada or Mexico. However, traveling via another country without a US-issued visa is still illegal for US citizens, and moreover, you CAN get caught, believe me. I recommend that anyone who attempts this does not use their credit card to book the flight. If you are caught you face possible imprisonment and fines of up to $40,000. Moreover, the current US government is much more actively searching out Americans who travel illegally to Cuba. Keep this in mind before deciding to go!
 
VonRichtofen
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 10:56 am

Superfly went to Cuba, not sure how he got there though. I think he went through YYZ?

He'll have some info for you I'm sure.
 
n844aa
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 11:10 am

I'm traveling to Cuba next week, on a Continental charter from MIA-HAV. I have one of the aforementioned Treasury Dept. exemptions, as I'm going for humanitarian reasons (on a license granted under this section of the travel guidelines: "The Treasury Department will also consider requests for specific licenses for humanitarian travel not covered by the general license, educational exchanges, and religious activities by individuals or groups affiliated with a religious organization.") And if I should do a little siteseeing on the side, well ...  Innocent

For several years, non-authorized travel to Cuba by an American was not actively prosecuted. However, at some point during the current presidency, the Treasury Dept. stepped up enforcement. Among other measures, they are now frequently stationing agents in Mexican air and sea terminals that offer direct travel to Cuba, keeping an eye out for Americans leaving the plane/boat. (How they pick out the Americans from the Europeans, I'm not sure.) But you can most definitely get caught nowadays and for this reason I avoided traveling until I was able to gain the proper credentials.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
WMUPilot
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 12:49 pm

ATA and their charters are the only US based airline that does have State Department approval to fly to Cuba (or so I have been told, i do think that others may beable to fly there please correct me if i am wrong)
JetBlue - Bringing humanity back to air travel
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 5:10 pm

So who shouldn't allow the americans to fly to cuba?
The american or cuban government?
I know it's not allowed to trade with cuba. And what does it mean: not allowed to spend money there? Anybody thinks they get invited or sleep on the beach?
 
wgw2707
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 5:44 pm

"So who shouldn't allow the americans to fly to cuba?
The american or cuban government?"

A complete embargo between the United States and Cuba was introduced in the 1960s following the Cuban revolution and, shortly thereafter, the Cuban missile crises. It was considered that the USSR might try to launch an attack against the United States via Cuba. In order to make this more difficult, the US embargo effectively prevented Cuba from direclty buying US technology or having access to the flow of US dollars that were caused by tourism to Cuba (in the 1950s, Havana, Cuba was one of the most popular tourist destinations for Americans). Both the US technology and free flowing cash from the US could have enabled Cuba to build up sufficient infrastructure for this invasion to be staged, or so it was reasoned. The embargo has been a considerable success in that it has prevented Cuba from developing the industry required for this.

However, now that the USSR is gone, and the capitalist world has triumphed, some persons may question the need for the continued existence of the embargo. The reason why it is still neccessary is that Cuba is a small country, one that could easily fall victim to a democratic revolution or to attacks, one that has a record of human rights abuses and other atrocities preventing it from entering the world of civilized nations, and one that is on the whole, relatively weak and at the same time very close to its number one enemy, which at present happens to have the largest and most advanced military in the world. Thus, under this pressure, it is believed that Fidel Castro might attempt to forge ties with various terrorist organizations that would threaten the US, and until we can be certain that this is not the case, it is vital that the continued free flow of US dollars into the Cuban economy be prevented.

That said, many Americans illegally enter Cuba each year. I consider this act to be unpatriotic, and those who break the law thus deserve to be fined. If an American legally wants to visit Cuba, there are several companies that offer legal cultural interest tours, plus there are various humanitarian institutes, and also, many educational institutes have the authority to secure licenses for their pupils and faculties. In addition, Americans with relatives in Cuba are of course given the right to travel to Cuba. So it is possible for an American to legally spend money in Cuba.

Finally, if someone else pays the bill, and you can prove that you personally spent no money in Cuba, it is possible to go without having a travel license.

-WGW
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 5:49 pm

@WGW - unpatriotic? lol
Sorry, am not interrested into political discussions. But for me it's a shame that a person from so-called "free land" isn't allowed to enter a country he wants to visit?
Unpatriotic?
Any more US-republican statements here?
 
Shenzhen
Posts: 1666
Joined: Wed Jun 25, 2003 12:11 pm

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 6:25 pm

An American Citizen (US Passport) can travel to Cuba. There is nothing noted in a US passport that bars it's holder from traveling anywhere in the world.

As others have stated, the US government is trying to stop the flow of commerce to Cuba, and regrettably, tourism is commerce, thus the ban on bringing/spending currency into/in the country.
 
wgw2707
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 6:30 pm

"But for me it's a shame that a person from so-called "free land" isn't allowed to enter a country he wants to visit?
Unpatriotic?"

Stefandodte, any American with a passport and a visa may enter Cuba at any time without a license-he just can't spend money there. Licences for travel to Cuba are easy to obtain. Universities provide them, and specially licensed travel agencies offer convenient Cultural Tours of varying length hosted by experienced guides. Also if your a journalist, a humanitarian aid worker, or if your with a religious or other special humanitarian interest travel group, you either qualify for a General Permit or you can easily apply for a Special Permit. It's not THAT hard. Cuba, btw is the only country that the US government imposes spending restrictions of this kind on. Though there are trade embargos on other countries, no one will stop you if you desire to go to Libya, Iran, North Korea, Syria or one of the other countries that has managed to make itself an enemy of the US.

-WGW


[Edited 2003-09-25 11:36:19]
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 6:36 pm

But it's still unpatriotic (you wrote that)?
Who is an enemy of the US? Everybody without coalition of the willings?
 
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lapper
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 7:23 pm

If a non American citizen has a Cuba stamp in their passport, will it cause them problems at US immigration if they want to travel to the US?
 
JGPH1A
Posts: 15079
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 4:36 pm

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:10 pm

The whole Cuba-embargo thing is just a way for the Republicans to sew up the Cuban-American vote in Florida - complete hypocrisy, and a pain in the ass. When Cubana migrated to Amadeus System User, we were not allowed by US Law to allow them to use our Help Desk in Miami for their day-to-day help desk requirements, which is what we offer to all our Latin American carriers. Instead they have to route their queries via the help desk in Buenos Aires - how bloody stupid is that ??
Young and beautiful and thin and gorgeous AND BANNED ! Cya at airspaceonline.com, losers
 
Shenzhen
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:26 pm

Yes, leave it to a German and a French guy to turn a simple question into something political (America Bashing). I'm really not sure how an American traveling to Cuba has anything to do with Republicans sewing up votes (especially since the restrictions have been in place through both Dem and Rep administrations).
or
How it has anything to do with the "coalition of the willing," whatever that is (new inflight entertainment system?)

Good going guys.
 
JGPH1A
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:33 pm

P.S. Shenzen, I'm not French, I just live here.
Young and beautiful and thin and gorgeous AND BANNED ! Cya at airspaceonline.com, losers
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:35 pm

@JGPH1A :
"how blody stupid?" It's not bloody stupid, it's a fight at the frontline in a helpdesk to protect you against bad communists  Wink/being sarcastic


@Shenzhen: What about comunism in your country? and human rights? and democracy? you got an embargo? No! Why: cause your people working so hard for western industry - and very very cheap. That's the reason why you don't get an embargo. lol
 
Shenzhen
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:45 pm

Stefan,
This thread is about Americans having the right to travel to Cuba. I don't think it has anything to do with China, Coalitions, or people working hard for western industry.

I think there has been great answers to the question. Why digress?
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 8:51 pm

@JGPH1A : Is that a manual question to route calls to another helpdesk or do the cuban calls automatically arrive in BUE?
 
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B747-437B
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 10:16 pm

Though there are trade embargos on other countries, no one will stop you if you desire to go to Libya, Iran, North Korea, Syria or one of the other countries that has managed to make itself an enemy of the US.

Absolutely incorrect.

On December 11, 1981, U.S. passports ceased to be valid for travel to, in, or through Libya and may not be used for that purpose without a special validation.

From : http://travel.state.gov/libya.html
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Thu Sep 25, 2003 10:18 pm

and by the way
@ Shenzhen: maybe when you are old enough, I will explain you why that is in context - no digress.  Wink/being sarcastic)
 
n844aa
Posts: 1266
Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:38 am

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 12:11 am

Lapper: No, it won't. It's no problem to have a Cuban stamp in your passport if you're a non-citizen. I suppose if you came across a particularly unpleasant customs agent, he/she could potentially hassle you, but in no way would it be grounds for denying entry.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
Guest

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 12:16 am

N844AA but isn't it more unpatreotic if a us-american customs agent hassles another us-citizen than making holidays in cuba (that was, was WGW rote).
So you not patreotic?
 
n844aa
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 12:37 am

I'm not here to get into a political discussion. The fact is that the embargo is the law. I completely respect someone's belief that it is unpatriotic to engage in unlicensed travel to Cuba. Personally, I disagree, but that's just my opinion. As far as my own patriotism goes, I'm sure there are plenty of reasons for it to be questioned. But hey, that's the great thing about living in a democracy, right?

It would be unpatriotic (in my opinion) for a U.S. customs agent to hassle a non-citizen, or give him a hard time, for having a Cuban stamp in his passport. If they were to do the same thing to an American citizen ... well, like I said, the embargo is the law, and it's the job of a customs agent to uphold the law. I don't think I could call it unpatriotic.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
BCAInfoSys
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 12:39 am

There are a LOT of misperceptions here. Americans ARE allowed to go to Cuba, it is just restricted. And there is no rule against spending money there as Pilottim747 implied. My sister went there with an exchange from the University of Vermont for almost a month.

Granted, they flew out of Dorval (Montreal), but they had the official visas and approval of the US government.
Militant Agnostic - I don't know and you don't either.
 
Ealsys1
Posts: 216
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 12:53 am

The one of the main purposes of those flights MIA-HAV is for Cuban-Americans to return to the island to visit family. Let us not forget that this is a government that shot down the planes of those performing a humanitarian act. Cessna vs. MIG THAT'S FAIR! WGW2707 you are very eloquent.
To all those who like to go to Cuba, enjoy supporting a tyrant. NONE of your money goes to the people of Cuba. It goes to Castro.
 
n844aa
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Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:38 am

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 1:11 am

EALSYS1, I don't appreciate your blanket statements. A great many American visitors to Cuba each year visit out of concern for their families or the Cuban people.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
Kempa
Posts: 364
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RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 1:25 am

@N844AA: You wrote "It's no problem to have a Cuban stamp in your passport if you're a non-citizen."

That conflicts with the State Department's statement that "Unless otherwise exempted or authorized, any person subject to U.S. jurisdiction who engages in any travel-related transaction in Cuba violates the regulations."

So, even, non-citizens cannot travel to Cuba (unless exempted or authorized) if they are under US jurisdiction. Yes, it is confusing. I have a Green Card, and, of course, a foreign passport. Technically, I am only under US jurisdiction when I am on US territory. But, as a foreign resident, I should exercise caution if I ever want to visit Cuba. From what I hear, Cubans will give you a visa and entry stamp on a separate document, so that people will not have a problem upon entering the United States.

Kempa
 
n844aa
Posts: 1266
Joined: Fri Jul 18, 2003 10:38 am

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 1:30 am

OK, yes, that was very misleading of me to say. I'm sorry, I used the word citizen when I should have been less specific.

As you noted, what I should have said that if you are not under U.S. jurisdiction, then a Cuban passport stamp will not be a problem if you attempt to visit the U.S.

Forgive my imprecision and thanks for the correction.
New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
 
mopac
Posts: 196
Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2003 12:05 am

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 2:05 am

For several years, non-authorized travel to Cuba by an American was not actively prosecuted.

they are now frequently stationing agents in Mexican air and sea terminals that offer direct travel to Cuba, keeping an eye out for Americans leaving the plane/boat. (How they pick out the Americans from the Europeans, I'm not sure.)

Wow. For starters they could look for Orvis fly rod travel cases walking off of Sunday afternoon Cubana flts to CUN between April and July. Americans have been traveling there for years to fish the flats south of Cuba (some of the best fly fishing in the world) and it was my understanding that officials didn't actively pursue these sportsmen so long as you didn't make it obvious (read: no passport stamp & fly through 3rd country) and because they knew that the hosting company (usually a European based adventure sport outfit) diligently rushed customers from the airplane to a boat and off the mainland within minutes, same on the return. But it sounds like things have changed drastically.

@WGW - unpatriotic? lol
Sorry, am not interrested into political discussions. But for me it's a shame that a person from so-called "free land" isn't allowed to enter a country he wants to visit?
Unpatriotic?
Any more US-republican statements here?


LOL Stefan, you have some of the funniest posts I have ever come across. Partner, if you "am not interested into political discussions" then you might want to avoid actively engaging people in political discussions in you next sentence. Oh... and you might want to ease up on the Michael Moore there guy, "Roger & Me" is one of my favorite movies but you gotta take his stuff in moderation.
 
Navion
Posts: 1069
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 1:52 am

Ignorance Of America

Fri Sep 26, 2003 2:30 am

I have now read more statements on this forum made by people not living in America commenting on America and it's politics (wrongly as usual). Presidents Kennedy and Johnson in the 1960's were both Democrats who enforced in implemented embargoes against Cuba. Democrat Presidents Carter and Clinton further honored the embargoes so calling something a "Republican" statement is truly, absolutely, unequivocally, and utterly ignorant. Let it go folks. Stick to what you know. By the way, I personally find Shenzhen's comments well said and his tone worthy of respect.
 
DeltaRules
Posts: 5207
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2001 11:57 am

RE: Are Americans Allowed To Go To Cuba?

Fri Sep 26, 2003 5:44 am

My Spanish teacher from last year saw an article that said Cuban travel permits for students were not going to be issued anymore.The reason being that students were using their time in "paradise" for a vacation instead of its intended purpose. (I don't know if anyone posted the same thing....in a hurry & didn't have any time to look.)

DeltaRules
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