Frequently Asked Questions

729. Which individuals may be transported between the United States and Cuba by a person that qualifies for the general license to provide carrier services?

Answer
  • Persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction who are traveling to or from Cuba pursuant to a general license under one of the 12 categories of travel listed in section 515.560 of CACR, 31 CFR part 515 (CACR), or under a specific license from OFAC may be transported between the United States and Cuba.
  • Cuban nationals applying for admission to the United States, as well as third-country nationals, with a valid visa or other travel authorization issued by the U.S. government may be transported to the United States from Cuba. (This includes individuals eligible to enter the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), as administered through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).)
  • Cuban nationals present in the United States in a non-immigrant status or pursuant to other  non-immigrant travel authorization issued by the U.S. government may be transported from the United States to Cuba. Cuban nationals who have taken up residence in the United States and are licensed as unblocked nationals pursuant to 31 CFR § 515.505(a)(1) are persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction and may be transported between the United States and Cuba if they meet the criteria set out in the first bullet above.
  • An individual, including a foreign national, who is traveling on official business of the U.S. government, a foreign government, or an intergovernmental organization of which the United States is a member or in which the United States holds observer status — including an employee, contractor, or grantee of such government or intergovernmental organization and any individual traveling on a diplomatic passport, as well as any close relative, as defined in 31 CFR § 515.339, accompanying the traveler — may be transported between the United States and Cuba.

Section 515.572 of the CACR authorizes persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction to provide carrier services to, from, or within Cuba, in connection with travel and transportation of individuals between the United States and Cuba, directly or indirectly, authorized pursuant to the CACR. BIS regulates the temporary sojourn to Cuba of both aircraft and vessels, which in some cases is authorized by License Exception Aircraft, Vessels and Spacecraft (AVS) but may require separate authorization by BIS. Persons engaging in carrier services may require additional authorizations by other U.S. government agencies. Persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction providing travel or carrier services are required to retain for at least five years from the date of the transaction a certification from each customer indicating the section of the CACR, or a copy of the specific license or the specific license number, that authorizes the person to travel to Cuba. Certifications may be collected and maintained in any form, including electronically, and must be retained for at least five years from the date of the transaction. 

Date Released
September 23, 2020