Flights from Orlando to Cuba begin this summer



Orlando International Airport has announced that it'll be offering nonstop flights to Cuba beginning July 8 via Island Travel and Tours. The 90-minute flights will be offered on Wednesdays, and eventually Island Travel and Tours hopes to expand to Sundays as well. 

You can't just book a trip for fun, though, because straight-up tourism to Cuba from the United States is still illegal. Although travel restrictions were relaxed on visits to Cuba by the Obama administration in January, your trip needs to fall into one of 12 special travel "activities" to be allowed. According to the U.S. Department of State, those categories are limited to:

  • family visits
  • official business of the U.S. government, foreign governments and certain intergovernmental organizations
  • journalistic activity
  • professional research and professional meetings 
  • educational activities
  • religious activities
  • public performances, clinics, workshops, athletic and other competitions, and exhibitions
  • support for the Cuban people
  • humanitarian projects
  • activities of private foundations or research or educational institutes
  • exportation, importation or transmission of information or information materials
  • and certain authorized export transactions

In its clear-as-mud FAQ about Cuban travel, the U.S. Department of Treasury explains that you don't actually need to apply for a license to go to Cuba – you just need to meet all the criteria for your approved "activity" as outlined here. 

But even if you're not a tourist, you can bring back up to $100 in Cuban rum and cigars when you return. Because business trip. 


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Orlando Weekly works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Central Florida.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Orlando’s true free press free.