Cruises are no longer allowed to travel to Cuba after President Donald Trump issued a new ban. What you need to know.
If taking a cruise to Cuba is on your bucket list and you live in the United States, you can erase it for now. President Donald Trump has banned cruises from visiting the island. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced on Tuesday that there are new restrictions on American tourists traveling to Cuba. Travelers aboard a Carnival cruise ship that sailed on June 3 and planned to dock in Havana, will be rerouted to Cozumel, Mexico, informed Carnival in a new travel alert.
“Cuba continues to play a destabilizing role in the Western Hemisphere, providing a communist foothold in the region and propping up U.S. adversaries in places like Venezuela and Nicaragua by fomenting instability, undermining the rule of law, and suppressing democratic processes,” said Mnuchin in a press release. “This administration has made a strategic decision to reverse the loosening of sanctions and other restrictions on the Cuban regime. These actions will help to keep U.S. dollars out of the hands of Cuban military, intelligence and security services.”
While President Barack Obama was in the White House, he relaxed restrictions on travel to Cuba, but new rules now apply under the Trump administration. “These actions mark a continued commitment towards implementing the National Security Presidential Memorandum signed by the President on June 16, 2017 titled “Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba.” These policies continue to work to channel economic activities away from the Cuban military, intelligence, and security services,” continued the press release from the U.S. Department of Treasury.
Erica Silverstein, senior editor at Cruise Critic, spoke to PEOPLE about how these changes may affect travelers who had already booked cruises to the island. “Cruise lines are often able to swap itineraries relatively quickly,” she said. “We’re already seeing cruise lines make itinerary changes to sailings in the very near future where a call at a Cuban port was part of a wider Caribbean itinerary.” When it comes to cruises that travel only to Cuba, with no other stops, “it’s possible that cruise lines may replace the itinerary entirely,” Silverstein concluded.