Travel agencies selling apartheid Cuba as a paradise destination facing lawsuits for false advertising

Travel agencies advertise apartheid Cuba as a vacation in paradise. What they don’t tell you is that under the tyrannical regime of the Castros, Cuba is a fourth-world country with collapsing buildings and a crumbling infrastructure that cannot provide humane conditions for its own enslaved people, let alone foreign tourists.

John Suarez reports in Notes from the Cuban Exile Quarter:

Travel agencies getting sued for misrepresenting conditions in Cuba to tourists

Travel agencies rosy picture of Cuba has a legal downside

Paradisus Rio de Oro in Holguin: what travel agencies show (left) what tourists see (right)
Paradisus Rio de Oro in Holguin: what travel agencies show (left) what tourists see (right)

Lonely Planet pitches Cuba as “old school cool” and an “escape from the hustle and bustle” but at the bottom of the web page has one line of caution: “The US Center for Disease Control has issued a travel alert suggesting that pregnant women postpone travel to Cuba due to the presence of the zika virus.” The Castro regime has a poor history of timely reporting of epidemics on the island, placing tourists at risk. Canada’s Sunwing travel agency pitches Cuba as “Paradise…with a history.” However it fails to mention that the resort they were sending tourists to in Cuba had “water problems” which meant little or no water for at least 12 days according to a March 22, 2017 Global News article. In a follow up article on March 24th Global news reported on the Starfish Cayo Santa Maria resort in Cuba:

Travelers told Global News they had little or no fresh water for their entire trip to the resort, making it impossible to flush toilets, take showers or wash their hands.

Some, like Donna Carvalho of Georgetown, Ont., returned to Canada and went almost immediately to hospital with severe diarrhea, vomiting and an excruciating headache. Carvalho was placed in isolation for five hours and released after she said doctors concluded she had likely become ill from unsanitary conditions at the resort.

Carvalho said she witnessed the hotel restaurant using a “dirty rag” to clean dishes, cutlery and glassware in lieu of a dishwasher. Other travellers described similar nauseating experiences.

The Canadian government has said that the ill served tourists, many of whom returned home very sick can sue the travel agency. It is not only Sunwing that needs to worry about a lawsuit but also the British based Thomas Cook travel agency. James and Kathryn Longhurst booked their dream honeymoon to Cuba for a two-week all-inclusive getaway in Paradisus Rio de Oro in Holguin, Guardalavaca that cost the newlywed couple $6,235. Three days in, Mr Longhurst fell so ill his tongue turned black. He was rushed to the hospital, where he was given injections and put on IV drips. Returned home and continued to feel ill. They are now suing Thomas Cook. Mrs. Longhurst also became ill. The newlyweds cited “filthy conditions” as the cause of the illness observing in a March 23rd article in The Sun that “dining restaurants were poorly kept with food not “covered properly”, “insects and birds” flying around the buffet area, staff not wearing gloves while handling food and the same utensils used for different dishes.”

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1 thought on “Travel agencies selling apartheid Cuba as a paradise destination facing lawsuits for false advertising”

  1. Yes, and in a more just and righteous world, all these poor, disappointed and utterly amoral tourists could be sued by the downtrodden Cuban people for being willing accessories to totalitarian tyranny. I’m not saying there’s no knowingly false advertising going on, and I’m definitely not defending the anything-for-a-buck travel agencies, but these crybaby tourists are so full of it that it’s almost comical. Almost.

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