Published on : Tuesday, January 21, 2020
After the Obama administration eased decades old restrictions on travel to the island during a short-lived 2014-2016 détente, Trinidad which is a five-hour drive east of Havana was one of the top destinations for the Americans that came into Cuba.
After the Washington’s tightening of sanctions there was a drop in the U.S. visitors and a handicraft shop ownwer said that she had already slashed priced and was worried that the situation will worsen this year.
Because of the new U.S. curbs on the U.S. flights to Cuba the U.S. visitor’s number is likely to drop again this year.
It is found that the total number of visitors to the island dropped by 9.6% last year to 4.275 million. The double-digit decline in U.S. visitors mostly through cruise ships and a smaller drop in European tourists were not compensated by the slight rises in arrivals of Cuban living abroad and Canadians.
The Trump administration barred U.S. airlines from flying to all destinations in Cuba besides Havana in December. It is expected that this month the public charter flights too will be cancelled.
All the itineraries will start in Havana and will now cost more stated Liliana Guerra, commercial vice director at Cienfuegos’ Hotel Jagua, run by the Spanish hotel chain Melia.
She saw a decrease in the arrival of Cubans from abroad who used the nearby airports to visit families and would stay in hotels as a kind of family tourism.
The U.S. sanctions on oil shipments to Cuba also ha d a knock-on effect as per the tourism ministry’s delegate in Cienfuegos, Jose Gonzalez. Due to lack of fuel the boat operators have had to shut sporadically.