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realclearworld

About those luxury vacations to Cuba… Forget about it

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-svcQnaOi5Uc/Tl4qTtnBg3I/AAAAAAAAAOM/erK3k_tmJP0/s1600/Caledonia+Cuba+holiday_xmas+party.jpg

After finding out OFAC was on to their attempt to circumvent the law by selling luxury Cuban vacations to American tourists under the guise of "people-to-people" contacts, travel giant Abercrombie & Kent has cancelled all their luxury tour programs to Castro's Cuba:

Luxury leisure tours to Cuba scrapped after new U.S. regulations announced

Still hoping you'll be able to get to Cuba for a leisurely visit? Keep waiting.

News from luxury tour provider Abercrombie & Kent set a somber tone to the hopeful travel plans south of the border. After reviewing a government advisory clarifying new regulations for Cuba travel, A&K canceled its Cuba program for U.S. travelers.

Travel Weekly reported the advisory, issued on July 25 by the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, acknowledged that some travel to Cuba regulations have expanded, but that “the amended regulations still contain significant travel restrictions.”

Here's the deal: According to OFAC, you're only getting a travel license to Cuba if you're part of a "people-to-people" group, which means you need to have a full-time schedule of "educational exchange activities between the travelers and Cubans.”

This rule diminishes any hopes of typical leisure travel, at least in the short term, so A&K thought it wise to cancel their intended program. The luxury travel provider had planned to offer six Cuba trips to Americans this year.

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