United States citizens are jumping on the opportunity to fly direct to Cuba from New Orleans, Louisiana and New York, New York.
Both cities are now offering nonstop flights to Cuba as the United States is taking steps to normalize diplomatic relations for the first time since 1961.
These new flights come on the heels of the US announcing the new steps it is taking to build a relationship with Cuba and “mend diplomatic ties.” Included in this mending is the easing of travel restrictions and some sales of agricultural and other products, as well as permitting Americans to bring up to $400 of Cuban goods when returning, with a $100 limit on alcohol and tobacco products.
Although I remain mostly optimistic about this unprecedented and forward movement, there are still some obstacles. Travel for tourism remains prohibited and a US trade embargo remains in place, which cannot be removed without an act of Congress.
It should also be mentioned that not everything is coming up sunshine during these behind door meetings. One big sticking point is the relationship that the US has with one of Cuba’s closest allies, Venezuela. The US considers them to be a “security threat” and has dealt with them by imposing sanctions, something that Cuba is adamantly against.
The changes that have come around during the recent months prove that Cuba and the US are in the process of becoming more amicable towards each other. However, there are still some items on the “to do” list: removing Cuba from the “State Sponsors of Terrorism” list.
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