ViaHero · Updated October 2, 2018
The Cuban government requires visitors from almost every country to obtain a Tourist Card (sometimes called a visa). It’s a pink or green paper that you must have to enter and exit Cuba. Here’s how to get one. Once you've read the article, feel free to message us any questions directly.
Who needs a Tourist Card?
Americans who travel to Cuba through an OFAC approved travel category need a Cuban Tourist Card. These are valid for 30 days and can be renewed once in Cuba for an additional 30 days. This is a Cuban government requirement and has nothing to do with the US government's 12 approved travel categories. All travelers to Cuba need a Tourist Card.
The following guidelines are for passengers who are traveling to Cuba on American Airlines. If you’re traveling on another airline, it will be more helpful to review our general guidelines on the Cuba tourist card/visa.
Buying your Tourist Card
If you want to get your documentation through American Airlines you have 2 options for purchasing a Tourist Card.
1. You can purchase the Cuban tourist card at the final airport before you depart for Cuba. This will be either Charlotte (CLT) or Miami (MIA) airport.
2. You can also order an American Airlines Cuban visa directly from Cuba Visa Services, they offer a package specifically for American Airlines passengers. If you are in Puerto Rico, Hawaii, or Alaska you must purchase your American Airlines Cuban visa at the airport because Cuba Visa Services does not ship to those locations.
The American Airlines Cuban visa costs $85, not including fees and/or shipping.
Pro tip: You can also purchase your Cuban Tourist Card online through Easy Tourist Card ahead of time if you don't want to wait until the last moment to secure your documentation (even if you're in Puerto Rico, Hawaii, or Alaska). This company sells green Tourist Cards for $29 and pink cards for $99, and offers 2-day DHL shipping anywhere in the world.
Pink or Green Tourist Card?
If you're flying straight from the US, your Cuban Tourist Card will be pink. The color signifies that you are entering Cuba from the United States. Since American Airlines flights to Cuba go directly from Charlotte and Miami, you must have the pink tourist card regardless of your citizenship.
Once you have your tourist card, fill it out completely. Keep it with your passport and don’t lose it! You’ll need it to clear customs when you arrive in Cuba and again when you depart.