How long does it take to get a visa to Cuba

How long does it take to get a visa to Cuba? This is one question many interested travelers to Cuba ask. Timing is very important if you want to get a Cuban visa as quickly as possible. If you apply too late, the visa may not come on time, thereby running your travel plans and forcing a postponement. This post provides valuable information about the Cuban visa and the requirements to successfully apply for it from your home country. Keep reading to learn more

Who Needs A Cuban Visa?

Foreign nationals who are not citizens of Cuba or enjoy visa waivers need a visa to enter Cuba at any time of the year. Cuban has a very strict immigration policy, but over the years, it has liberalized its immigration laws to make it easier for foreign tourists because it earns significant revenue from tourism.

Anyone coming to Cuba for holidays must obtain a Cuba tourist card or any other visa that qualifies them as legal visitors.

What Is The Cuba Tourist Visa Card?

The visa card is a special travel document issued to visitors coming for tourism. This document is a visa but different from conventional visas because it cannot be used for work or anything else. It is also useful for only a short period due to its shirt expiry date.

In the Northern Caribbean region, Cuba shares proximity to the Gulf of Mexico to the West and the Atlantic Ocean to the East. Its main islands are the Island of Cuba, Isla de la Juventud, and tiny archipelagos on the fringes. These islands are favorites for tourists because they bring them close to the lovely beaches, landscape, and historical colonial structure.

Document You Need To Apply For A Cuban Visa

The documents you will need to apply for a visa vary depending on your visa type. Long-stay visas like work and study visas have more documentary requirements than short-stay tourist visas. However, here are common documents for all Cuban visas.

Completed Application Form: A duly completed Cuban visa application form with accurate information.

Valid Passport: The applicant must provide a valid passport to complete the application. The passport must have at least 6 months validity and must come with at least 2 blank visa pages. For online applications, applicants must scan and upload the bio page.

Return Flight Ticket: A copy of the return flight ticket reservation to prove that you have every intention of traveling back to your home country at the end of your visit.

Proof of Funds: Applicants may need to prove financial Solvency. A bank statement of account must show entries for the last six months and sufficient funds to cover your expenses.

Email Address: A registered email address is required as this is where the visa will be sent once it is approved (for online applications). For physical embassy applications, the embassy will send you mail notifications regarding the progress of your applications.

Receipt: There is a visa fee you must pay for the application. The payment receipt generated must be scanned and uploaded.

Types Of Cuban Visas

Cuban visas can be separated into long and short-term visas. We review each of them briefly.

Tourist Visa: Also called a tourist card, it is a visa for foreigners who wish to come to Cuba for tourism. This visa cannot be used for anything else.

Family Visa: This visa is for foreigners whose family members are either residents or citizens of Cuba. It is only available to immediate family members like children or spouses of Cubans

Journalist Visa: A Journalist Visa is for professional foreign journalists coming for work purposes. Applicants have to request authorization from the Cuban embassy in their country. Only authorized journalists may apply.

Business Visa: A business visa is for foreigners who wish to travel to Cuba to conduct business. This visa requires authorization too from the Cuban embassy.

Work Visa: Work visas are for those employed by a company or organization in Cuba. They must provide employment and other necessary documents. This visa can only be obtained from the Cuban embassy.

Student Visa: A student visa is for foreigners admitted into any Cuban learning institution. The applicant needs to provide proof of admission in their visa application form.

Medical Treatment: This one is for foreigners traveling to Cuba for medical treatment at any hospital or medical facility.  

How To Apply for A Cuban Visa?

For long-term visas, visit the Cuban consulate in your country, but you can apply from home for tourist visas. Just follow these steps.

  • Visit VisaHQ

  • Choose Cuba as your destination

  • Select your country of Citizenship

  • Select your preferred visa

  • Complete the application form

  • Attach all documents

  • Pay the visa fee

Submit the application form for approval

The visa will be mailed to your registration email address if your application is approved.

How Long Does it Take To Get A Visa?

The waiting time will depend on the Cuba visa you apply for. You will have to approach the Cuba embassy in your country for long-term visas, and the process may take 15 – 30 working days. You may have to wait for 3-7 working days for short-term visas online to get the visa.

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    This article was published by VisaHQ, a world leader in visa processing. Since 2003, VisaHQ has 20 offices in 6 countries and has helped countless tourist, business travellers, diplomats, workers, and students obtain their visa. With a 4.41 star rating on, VisaHQ is committed to innovation, service, security, and simplicity in the visa application process.