Cuba prepares for post-COVID-19 reopening.

Up-to-date information of interest to Canadians and Cubans living in Canada on measures for recovery after the pandemic are described below. 

Ottawa, June 13, 2020 - On June 11, the Cuban government informed about the measures to be implemented for the gradual recovery of the country's activity after the COVID-19 epidemic. In this summary you will find the most relevant measures of greatest interest to Canadian citizens and Cubans living in Canada.

The re-opening plan will be gradual and asymmetric, and has 3 phases.

Physical distancing and use of masks will remained in effect for all activities during the first phase. In the second phase, the distancing measure could be relaxed in certain places, although there would be no return to large agglomerations.

Tourism will restart in the first phase only with the national market.

International tourism will resume gradually in the second phase.  A special protocol will be established at the borders, by which a PCR (serological test for COVID-19) will be carried out on each visitor and their temperature will be taken; in case any traveller tests positive, he\she will be hospitalised. It will be restarted only in the north and south keys, depending on the demand: Cayo Santa María, Cayo Coco, Cayo Guillermo, Cayo Cruz y Cayo Largo del Sur. The offers do not include excursions to the cities. The marketing of the rest of the Cuban tourist destinations will begin in the third phase, also depending on demand. No hotel will open at one hundred percent of its capacity, since the aim is to keep social distancing. Car rental will be reactivated in the second phase. Excursions, which would begin with domestic tourism, would add foreigners in the second phase, but only for tours of the keys. In the hotels, clinical-epidemiological monitoring will be established.

In the first phase, restrictions on entry and departure from the country are maintained, as well as the ban on commercial flights during the first and second phases. The airports will remain open, but only for humanitarian and cargo flights. The limitation of travelling with only one suitcase in the first two phases is maintained and in a third phase up to two suitcases will be allowed, which is established by the international airlines.

In the third phase, it will be allowed to rent the private houses (casas particulares) that comply with the due hygiene measures established in the sanitary protocols.

Urban, intermunicipal and rural public transport, both state and private, will be restored with limitations. There will be certain safety measures such as the use of masks and distance in the first phase, that will become more flexible in the second and third phases. In the second phase, interprovincial transport will be resumed on regular routes, by bus, train, catamaran and domestic flights. In addition, non-commercial cargo distribution will be re-established in the first phase.

Cuban citizens who are about to complete or have completed 24 months abroad will keep their extension and will not lose their rights in Cuba. Humanitarian flights of Cubans residing in Cuba who are stranded abroad will continue to be allowed into the country, complying with the 14-day quarantine protocols upon arrival.

From the second phase, artistic services within and outside the borders will be re-established.

In the summer the beaches will be opened, although some control over its use will be maintained.

Gastronomic and commercial services will be opened in the first phase by 30 percent, in the second up to 60 percent and in the third phase they will be completely restored. Workers will be required to wear masks in all 3 phases of opening.

In the first phase, the hospital services that were suspended will be gradually resumed: up to 50% in the first phase, up to 75% in the second and in the third phase the hospitals will return to normal. The same will happen with the dentistry services.

For the definition of the phases, the specificities of the municipalities and provinces will be taken into account; the establishment of the first phase will be conditioned, in its three phases, by previously defined health indicators, which will determine the transition to each of the phases, taking into consideration the essential characteristics of each territory.

If the favourable evolution of the health situation continues, the first phase could begin, in principle, in the middle of the week of June 15 or at the beginning of the week of June 22, which will be confirmed in due course by the Cuban authorities.

Embassy of Cuba in Canada (Information taken from Granma and Cubadebate)


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