Cuba Family Holiday

Trip Code: QUFA

Why we love it

Amble down the cobbled streets of historic Havana, Explore Cuba’s best-preserved colonial town, Check out the Bay of Pigs Museum, Snorkel in the waters off Cayo Blanco, See the site of Che Guevara’s famous train battle

Is this trip right for me?

Part of Cuba’s appeal is its old-fashioned style – this includes the banking systems. Funds in Cuba can be difficult to access. Please read our Essential Trip Information to be fully prepared.

Luxuries such as air conditioning, and even kitchen sinks, are often scarce. Part of the experience here is learning to appreciate everyday Cuban resourcefulness.

There's plenty of time to eat the delights of the sea, but it's good to keep in mind that accompaniments are not as expansive as in another countries, due to limitations on imports.

Internet access can be hard to come by, and when it's available it's often unreliable and expensive. This is, on the other hand, a great opportunity to take a break from modern devices and have a true holiday.

Cuba is different and that’s what makes it such a fascinating destination. You will find that things don’t always go according to plan or work the way they do back home. Regulations concerning foreigners and currency may appear strange to you, buses and planes often run late and sometimes the water in your bathroom can run cold and the electricity fail. In order to get the most out of your holiday, a degree of patience, good humour and understanding is a definite advantage. Cuba may not be wealthy in a monetary sense, however if you approach your holiday with an open and enquiring mind, the warm welcome you receive from Cubans will ensure you a rich and rewarding holiday experience.

Important information

1. Please note that these trips are for adults and children travelling together and there must be at least one child under 18 with you.
2. Minimum age for children on this trip is 5 years old.
3. A discount of 10% applies on this trip to children 17 years and under at time of travel.
4. A Single Supplement is available on this trip, please ask your booking agent for more information.
5. It is common for Cuban houses to have bar gates locking the access in and out of the house during the night. We constantly work with our “Casa” owner to make them see the risk this poses in case of an emergency exit is required. We have agreed with the properties we work with that such gates will remain unlock during the night and/or you will have the necessary means to open them if required (a set of keys for example). If you have any concerns in this regard please contact the emergency number listed in the Essential Trip information and while on tour speak to your tour leader
6. Travel is always an adventure and, as destinations reopen, there are a few challenges as everyone gets back up to speed and adjusts to the new normal. Our leaders are experts when it comes to dealing with anything unexpected along the journey, so pack your understanding and flexibility, sit back and relax while they take care of the rest.
7. There have been issues reported about transiting through US to/from Cuba, including being denied boarding. Please check your government travel advisories, with embassy and your airline directly to be clear on the requirements to transit through US for your trip.

What to bring/pack

What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking, we recommend you pack as lightly as possible and make sure that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage, and walk with it for short distances or up or down a flight of stairs. Our travellers usually find the smaller their luggage is, the more they enjoy the trip not having to worry about carrying heavy bags! Aim to keep your main luggage under 15kg.

Many travellers carry their luggage in a compact smaller suitcase or backpack with wheels. We recommend your bag has carry straps or handles so it is easy to lift and carry for the times you are unable to wheel it (ie. on rough surfaces or up steps).

If you are taking overnight trains, or primarily using public transport then the smaller your luggage the easier it will be to store under or above bunks. Large suitcases may not be able to be taken on board. A lockable bag or small padlock for your bag will be useful especially when travelling on public transportation as well.

You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, and jacket etc. when you’re exploring during the day.

Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:, https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list, WATER BOTTLE
Please bring your own water bottle to refill along the way. Although it can be difficult to avoid bottled water when travelling, please use the water dispensers which are provided on some of our vehicles and at some of our accommodation. Your leader will advise whether tap water is safe to drink in your destination, if it is you can simply refill with tap water. When unable to avoid bottled water it is better to buy the largest available and distribute into your smaller bottle for the day.

Physical rating

 
2

These trips are setup to involve and include all the family so no real physical preparation is necessary. The trips all have some degree of physical activity but nothing that is too strenuous. Please check the physical rating on the trip notes and if you need further explanation please contact one of our sales consultants who will provide you with more detailed information.

Joining your group

Hotel Presidente, Calzada Street #110 (Corner of Avenida de los Presidentes), Vedado, Havana, CUBA, Phone: +53 7838 1801

Hotel Presidente is a 2 minute walk from the Malecón seafront promenade. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant and pool. Each room at this hotel includes air-conditioning, a TV with satellite channels and a private bathroom.

Joining instructions

ARRIVAL TRANSFER:
An arrival transfer can be pre-arranged for you and your family at an additional cost; available if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us; you must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 5 days prior to travel.
After collecting your luggage, exit through the main arrivals’ door. If you arrive in Terminal 3, look for someone inside the terminal holding a small sign with the Intrepid Travel logo. If you arrive in Terminal 2, you will need to exit the building to find with your driver holding a small sign with the Intrepid Travel logo. If you can't locate the driver, go to Terminal 3, find the exit door number 8, and locate the free-standing pull-up banner with the Intrepid Travel logo and wait there until the driver takes the same initiative. The transfer will be provided in a yellow taxi-branded car; however, all drivers are specifically contracted to us so please trust they will know the address of your hotel.
For assistance call +53 5333 8121 or +53 5438 9140; see the Problems and Emergency Contact Information section in your Essential Trip Information document for more details to successfully connect.

LOCAL ASSISTANCE:
We have a desk located in the listed address below; providing a 24-hour service with English speaking employees if any assistance is required.
La Gargola Guesthouse
1st floor #82 Cuba street, Old Havana (between Cuarteles & Chacon Streets) PH: +53 (7) 8605493

The Spanish translation is Casa La Gargola 1° Piso #82 Calle Cuba, entre Cuarteles y Chacon, Havana Vieja.

Finishing your trip

A Guesthouse, Central Havana, Havana, CUBA

Cuban Guesthouses (known locally as Casas) are more similar in style to B&Bs than they are homestays. Families do not necessarily live in the residence and most houses we contract are primarily a business. While some guesthouse managers and owners speak English, interaction mostly consists of gestures, smiles and ‘Spanglish’. Just like the residences in your own neighbourhood, each casa is unique; expect there to be differences between the rooms you and your travelling companions stay in (generally we arrange things so that there are 1-4 group members in each house).
Each room has a private bathroom with towels, and occasionally basic toiletries are provided. Premium guesthouses at least will not have electric shower heads although as with many developing countries, power cuts do occur on occasion, meaning that hot water can’t always be guaranteed regardless of the standard.

Intrepid offers a pre-arranged departure transfer service to Havana Airport at an additional fee. If you require this service, please advise your flight arrival details at least 5 days prior to your trip departure.

If you have a transfer to the Airport your transfer driver will collect, you from your guesthouse 3.5 hours before your flight time. If your transfer has not arrived within 15 minutes of the scheduled pickup time please ask the guesthouse staff to call +53 5438 9140 or our Cuba Emergency number, listed under the ‘Problems and emergency contact information’ section of this document.

Alternatively, you can travel from your guesthouse to the International Airport by taxi. The leader will be able to assist you with booking a taxi. The taxi will cost approximately 30CUC and takes approximately 25 minutes depending on traffic.

Meals & dietary information

Breakfasts included: 10

Lunches included: 1

Dinners included: 

While travelling with us you and your family will experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you and your family more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There's no obligation to do this though. If you or a member of your family have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure.

Climate & seasonal information

Please note that Hurricane season is June to October, when landslides, mudslides, flooding and disruptions to essential services can occur. Intrepid monitors these situations as they may arise, so that itineraries or activities can be amended as necessary.

In case of emergency

While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip.

We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager.

You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time.

For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/

In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the number below.

BOOKING ENQUIRIES / ISSUES
For general enquiries or questions about your booking, please contact your agent or adventure specialist, or visit us at:
http://www.intrepidtravel.com/au/contact-us

CRISES AND EMERGENCIES
Please be aware that communication lines in Cuba are unreliable and establishing a clear line requires patience. Please follow these instructions to ensure our operators can assist you in times of need. Since voicemail isn't an option and most incoming call phone numbers are automatically blocked, our operator will not be able to return any missed calls. The only solution to this problem is persistence. Keep calling the line until an operator answers the call. Alternatively, the emergency line is a mobile number that can be reached via text. If you cannot establish a connection to our operators over the phone, please send a text with your full name, any reference codes (if known), the issue at hand and a return contact number. You will most likely receive a response via text. 

In the case of a genuine crisis or emergency, please contact our local office:
Intrepid's Local Operator (located in Havana): +53 5333 8121 or +53 5510 5525

In Cuba, if necessary, you may use *99 prior to dialling to make a reverse charge call. 

If you cannot reach the operator using the above numbers, alternatively you may try our Cuba representative located in Australia +61 430 504 636

Accommodations

GENERAL ROOMING CONFIGURATIONS:
Family of two: All family groupings of two will be accommodated in a twin room.

Family of three: Wherever possible we will put you in a triple room. Please be aware that in some places triple rooms are in short supply. This means that a triple room will often be a twin room with a rollaway bed or mattress on the floor. Where triple rooms aren’t available it will be at your discretion which of your family takes the single room.

Family of four or more: You will most likely be accommodated in two twin rooms. Where possible, we will accommodate your family in a quadruple room.

While we do our very best to ensure that family groups are roomed close together (in some cases, we can arrange adjoining rooms), we can’t guarantee this. Most family holidays occur during peak season and we sometimes have little to no control over the exact placement of rooms within a hotel. Please be understanding if we are unable to room your family in immediate proximity of one another.

Transportation


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