How to get a tourist card for Cuba. Musicians walking along a white sandy beach with their instruments, on a bright sunny day.

How to get a tourist card for Cuba By An Expert (Easy Guide 2024)

Wondering how to get a tourist card for Cuba (also called a Cuban tourist visa) for your once-in-a-lifetime Cuba holiday?

There are a variety of ways to go about getting a tourist card for Cuba, but rest assured, it is not at all difficult!

I have tried them all, as I have traveled to Cuba for five years and entered Cuba at least two dozen times, including from the United States.

Here is how!

Affiliate disclosure: I only recommend tours, services and purchases I know and love on this website.

What Is A Cuban Tourist Card?

How to extend tourist card for Cuba beyond 90 days while in Cuba.
Tourist card for Cuba

A Cuba tourist card, also called a tourist visa (and “tarjeta del Turista” in Spanish), is the physical document you need in order to be able to enter Cuban territory as a tourist or a visitor.

Getting a tourist card for Cuba is a formality and not something you need to apply for and get approved to obtain.

You simply buy it from one of the services that provide the document when you decide to visit Cuba, as having a tourist card is one of the entry requirements set by the Cuban government.

Your Cuban tourist card is valid for one single entry, and you can stay in Cuba for up to 90 days on one visa.

5 Best Ways To Get A Tourist Card For Cuba!

📍 Here is the where-to-buy list:

  • Buy from the Cuban Embassy or Cuban Consulate in your country.
  • Buy the tourist card from your airline when booking your flight.
  • Buy from selected travel agencies and tour operators.
  • Buy from selected airports upon check-in.
  • Buy your Cuban tourist card from a secure online provider.


  1. Fill in the required information on the tourist card.
  2. Show your tourist card when you check in to your flight.
  3. Show your tourist card when requested upon arrival in Cuba. Your Cuban tourist card is valid for one single entry.
  4. Keep your tourist card with you in Cuba!
  5. Passport control will collect your tourist card when you are leaving Cuba – SO DON’T LOSE IT!

Do I Need A Tourist Card For Cuba?

Yes, you probably need a tourist card for Cuba.

Some nationalities are exempt from having a visa to visit Cuba, among other travel documents.

Most foreign nationals, including US nationals and every Canadian citizen, need a Cuba tourist card to enter the island.

Americans need the pink tourist card, while the rest of the world needs the green card for entering Cuba.

How Do I Get A Tourist Card For Cuba?

Classic American car tour in Havan Cuba
Havana car ride 1

Online providers

There are several trustworthy online providers that will send the Cuban visa to your mailbox in as little as 2-3 days.

I normally use Easy Tourist Card, which is super easy and fast payment, and delivers the visa to my address normally within three days.

You will probably also be able to get a tourist card from the nearest Cuban embassy in your country, but that might be a bit more bureaucratic.

Contact the embassy or check out their home page and ask for an application form that you will need to fill out and return to them.

Then, you need to wait for the payment to be registered before you can pick it up (if it is in your city) or have it sent to your address for a charge.

The impressive white Capitolio building on a bright sunny summer day, with a bright blue classic American car passing by
The Capitolio in Havana

Selected Airlines

Some airlines also provide tourist cards; check with yours to find out if that is an option for you. You will receive the tourist card in a blank form, and you will need to fill out the required information by hand.

While you are in Cuba, you need to keep your filled-out tourist card, as you will be required to show it again when you are leaving the country!

Cuban Embassy or Consulate

The Cuban Embassy or Consulate in your country probably provides Cuban tourist cards as one of their services.

Find their home page and order one if possible, or send an email or call them for information.

Traveling with a travel agency or tour operator.

Travel Agencies and tour operators that offer tours to Cuba normally include the Cuban tourist card in their tour packages. If they do not, for some reason, they will most likely sell the tourist card separately.

Tourist Card For Cuba Application Form

If you contact the Cuban embassy in your country, they will probably send you a Cuba tourist card application form to complete and return to the embassy for approval.

Even though it might say application form, it is not an application that can be denied. Getting a tourist card for Cuba is a formality. This form may be available on the embassy home page.

A private online provider like Easy Tourist Card will have a digital form on the home page, along with immediate payment. This is not an application per se, just an order form.

Just fill in the required fields and provide a photo of the required documentation, and the tourist card will be sent to your home address.

A woman with red nail polish rolling a Cuban cigar from the dried tobacco leaves
Cuban cigars in the making

Green vs Pink Tourist Card Cuba

Most visitors to Cuba need the standard GREEN tourist card, but US citizens AND visitors traveling via US territory as the last airport before entering Cuba can NOT use the green cards.

US citizens and travelers in transit via US airports need the PINK tourist card for entry. Unfortunately, the pink card is also pricier than the green one.

When you order your tourist card, make sure you know your flight itinerary and get the correct one!

Americans are technically not allowed to visit Cuba for tourism purposes but can choose from a list of 12 pre-approved reasons to travel to Cuba without any further application or paperwork.

Pre-Approved Reasons For Cuba Travel

You will probably be asked to state your reason for visiting when you book your flight online as part of the booking process and upon check-in at the airport.

Most travelers choose “in support of the Cuban people” as their reason for travel.

Apart from that, you just state your reason for visiting Cuba if anyone asks – it is not more difficult than that!

The restrictions also regulate what accommodations US travelers can use while in Cuba and what services they are not at liberty to use, as defined in the Cuba restricted list.

The short explanation is that Americans are not allowed to visit hotels, restaurants, or shops that are owned by (51% or over) or associated with the Cuban state.

How Long Does A Tourist Card For Cuba Last?

Laz Terrazas natural pools in Pinar del Rio province, Cuba.
Las Terrazas in Pinar del Rio Province

After November 1st, 2022, the Cuban regulations changed, and one tourist card for Cuba is now valid for a 90-day entry to the island.

If you want to stay longer than 90 days, you can extend the tourist card for another 90 days while in Cuba.

Bring the required documents and go to an immigration office close to where you are staying.

To extend your Cuban tourist card, you do not need an appointment; you just need to show up at the Cuban immigration office, stand in line, and present your mission.

To extend your Cuban tourist card, you need to bring your passport and documentation of valid travel insurance, including health insurance.

Also, bring the booking form and address of the hotel or casa particular you are staying, and documentation of your plane ticket out of the country.

You may extend your tourist card only once, for another 90 days, so you can stay for up to 180 days in Cuba without leaving the island.

How Much Does A Tourist Card To Cuba Cost?

Extracting sugar juice from the canes in Trinidad Cuba
Pressing sugar canes in Trinidad Cuba

From online providers, a green tourist card for Cuba will start around $35, plus shipment. This is the version of the tourist card most travelers to Cuba need.

The pink tourist card for US citizens card starts at around $90-100 (pricier due to the situation between the US and Cuba).

If you buy your tourist card at an American airport upon check-in, the pink tourist card will be 100 dollars.

The most hassle-free option is to buy your tourist card from an online provider, like Easy Tourist Card, and have it sent to your home address.

US citizens of Cuban origin will still be considered Cuban nationals upon entry to Cuba within local laws, even if they have a different passport and citizenship.

For information about this and regulations for family visits, contact your nearest Cuban embassy.

What Airlines Sell Cuban Tourist Cards?

Paradisiacal beaches in Cuba, with white sands and blue seas. Here a white catamaran with a colorful sail is ready to head out to sea.
Catamaran on the beach in Cuba

Some airlines with international flights to Cuba also offer passengers the option to buy a Cuban tourist card online before the flight or at certain airports.

The price normally is lower if you buy online in advance before your trip.

American Airlines Cuba Tourist Card

American Airlines has daily flights from Miami (where 70% of the population is Cuban!) to Cuban airports.

At Miami International Airport, you can buy a tourist card for Cuba when you check in with American Airlines or Delta Airlines.

Both airlines have direct flights to Cuba.

The price at the American Airlines counter in Miami is $100, which is a bit pricier than online providers or most embassies, but it is also super convenient.

If you fly American Airlines from any other destination in the US, do not expect they are familiar with the Cuban tourist card everywhere.

Some people, even staff in airports, are not always familiar with the tourist card layout, rules, online registration, or the 11 pre-approved reasons for travel.

So when you fly to Cuba from an American airport, the best way is to ensure you arrive early and have some extra time to allow any unenlightened staff to catch up with the current rules!

There are still regulations in place for Americans traveling to Cuba, including that US citizens can not use US their credit cards in Cuba.

Air Canada Tourist Card For Cuba

With Air Canada, the Cuban tourist card is included in your flight ticket when you book your trip to Cuba.

The tourist card will be distributed to the passengers during the flight before arrival at your Cuban airport.

Delta Airlines Tourist Card For Cuba

Delta Airlines offers passengers the Cuban tourist card at the final airport you’ll stop at prior to departure for Cuba, including Miami, where you only get the pink Cuba tourist card.

Cuban Tourist Card from JetBlue

You can buy the Cuban Tourist Card from JetBlue at the airport for $50 when you check in.

You’ll need the following in order to buy the tourist card at the airport:

  • Your boarding pass
  • Valid passport at least six months ahead
  • You need to pay with a credit or debit card

Other Visas For Cuba

street art in Havana, a dancer with a black hat smiling looking happy and vibrant
Street art in Havana

If you have other plans than visiting Cuba as a tourist or traveler within one of the 12 US pre-approved reasons for travel to Cuba, you need to apply for an appropriate visa that suits your intentions.

There are a variety of special visas to apply for in order to visit Cuba.

The other types of visa you can apply for to travel to Cuba are:

  • Family visa (A2)
  • Journalist visa (D6)
  • Business visa
  • Work visa (D1)
  • Student visa (D2)
  • Medical treatment visa (D10)

Visa For Long Term Stays In Cuba

Different countries have different requirements for applying for a long-term visa to stay in Cuba for studies, work, or other purposes.

If you are planning a long-term stay in Cuba, you need to contact the nearest embassy or consulate and ask for information on how to go about this.

In order to apply for a long-term stay in Cuba, you normally will have to provide the following:

  • A certificate of police clearance from your country, issued within the past three months and legalized
  • Medical screening, including blood tests, AIDS tests, and radiographic examinations of the thorax. The results cannot be older than six months and must be legalized.
  • A letter that states the reason for the application
  • Any relevant documents connected to your application, such as marriage certificates, birth certificates, etc.
  • A passport-size photo
  • A photocopy of your passport
Enjoy the Cuban music culture; smiling drummer playing in Callejon de Hamel in Havana in front of a colorful mural
Local drummer in Callejon de Hamel

Do I Need A Passport To Go To Cuba?

Yes, you need a passport to enter Cuba.

Your U.S. passport is valid in Cuba. You must also make sure your passport is valid for at least another six months from the date of entry!

Pre-Arrival Online Registration

You also need to register your entry to the country electronically online prior to arrival.

You will find the registration form here on the D’viajeros page; complete the registration before you go to the airport.

Some airlines will ask to see documentation on this registration in order to complete your check-in, so make sure you don’t forget.

Cuba Travel Insurance Requirement

Charming cafe in colonial city Trinidad Cuba
Charming cafe in colonial city Trinidad Cuba

First of all, yes, you need travel insurance to travel to Cuba.

If you are asked to show documentation of travel insurance at the passport control (random checking) and don’t have it, you will be required to buy Cuban travel insurance before you enter the country.

What travel insurance company you choose is up to you, but you must choose one with health insurance, as that is mandatory for travel to Cuba. If someone asks, travelers to Cuba must provide proof of both medical health coverage.

I use Medical Travel Insurance (IMG), but I have not yet needed their help.

IMG does have excellent reviews throughout from people who have been unlucky and needed their travel insurance provider to step up!

No Covid Restrictions For Travel In Cuba

Sunrise over Vinales Valley west in Cuba, the glowing golden sun is coming up behind the green trees and bushes behind a wooden gate
Sunrise in Vinales Valley

After September 2022, there are no longer any requirements for a PCR test or fully vaccinated status regarding COVID-19 (see WHO pages) in order to enter Cuba.

You might be required to wear a face mask on your flight, depending on your airline, and you might also be required to wear a face mask in some places in Cuba, like on the Viazul bus.

So remember to bring a packet to be sure.

Do I Need Vaccinations For Cuba?

You are not required to have specific vaccinations to enter Cuba – however.

The general recommendation is that there are some vaccines you should take before your holiday in Cuba.

The CDC and WHO recommend the following vaccines for Cuba:

Hepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, cholera, rabies, meningitis, polio, measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis), chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia, and influenza.

Check with the health authorities in your country whether these recommendations apply to you.

FAQs Cuba Travel

Why are US citizens not allowed to travel to Cuba?

This is NOT correct. US citizens ARE ALLOWED to travel to Cuba.

Americans can choose a reason for Cuba travel among 12 pre-approved reasons for traveling to Cuba, determined by the US Government.

Can US citizens travel to Cuba as a tourist?

Technically, US citizens are NOT allowed to travel to Cuba as a tourist.

Americans choose between 12 pre-approved reasons for Cuba travel, among which the most common one is “to help the Cuban people.”

U.S. citizens still need to buy a tourist card, also called a tourist visa, to enter Cuba.

What are the 12 requirements to travel to Cuba?

You can read about the 12 pre-approved reasons to travel to Cuba for US citizens here.

The easiest and most common reason for Cuba travel is “to help the Cuban people”. There is no paperwork or application process connected to this; you just choose your reason and state that reason if anyone asks.

What happens if a U.S. citizen travels to Cuba?

Nothing happens if a U.S. citizen travels to Cuba, hopefully, the U.S. citizen will have a fabulous holiday and encounter with Cuban culture.

U.S. citizens need to choose one of the pre-approved reasons to travel to Cuba and need to buy the PINK Cuban tourist card, also called a tourist visa.

Selected airlines sell this visa/tourist card, or you can buy one online.

What documents do I need to travel to Cuba?

You need the following documents to travel to Cuba:

Do Americans need to be vaccinated to enter Cuba?

No, specific vaccines are not required before entering Cuba. Your country’s health department probably has recommendations for what vaccines you should consider.

How Do I get a tourist card for Cuba?

You can buy a tourist card online from Easy Tourist Card, or from the Cuban embassy in your country.

You might also be able to buy a Cuban tourist card from your airline or at the airport prior to departure. A tourist card can be bought at Miami International Airport’s check-in counter for American Airlines and Delta Airlines.

How Do I Get A Tourist Visa For Cuba?

A tourist visa is the same as a tourist card for Cuba. You can buy it from the following places:

  • Buy one online from Easy Tourist Card
  • Buy one from your airline if they offer this
  • Buy one at the airport of departure if they offer this
  • Buy one from the Cuban Embassy in your country

Is Travel To Cuba Allowed Right Now?

Yes, Cuba travel is allowed right now.

In addition, American citizens must choose one of the 12 pre-approved reasons for traveling to Cuba (Americans can not travel as “tourists”) and follow some simple guidelines for traveling in Cuba.

Not Booked Yet? Research Flight Prices Here!

Wrap-Up How To Get A Tourist Card For Cuba!

Now, you should have all the information you need about how to get a Cuban tourist card to confidently get a hold of both the tourist card for Cuba and all the other documentation you need before your amazing Cuba holiday.

I hope you will love your stay in Cuba!

Related blog posts:

Is Female Solo Travel In Cuba Safe? A Local Woman’s Advice

Cuba Trips From US: How To Travel To Cuba From US

Currency in Cuba From A Local: Can you use dollars in Cuba?

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