Sunday, April 12, 2009
Cuba, Vacation Hot Spot?
U.S. Tourists may have a new travel destination within the coming years. Since the Late 1950's the U.S government has not allowed U.S citizens to travel to Cuba. Not that it is illegal for citizens to be in Cuba, but the spending of U.S. money there is considered illegal by the U.S. This may soon change because congress is trying to have this ban lifted.
Since the end of the Cold War, Cuba has been encouraging international travelers to visit. It has been effective and Cuba has become a vacation destination for many Europeans. If Americans are openly allowed to visit, this may become a problem for the small Cuban tourism industry.
There are many concerns about allowing a flood of Americans into this country. Prices which are already high may become higher. Lodging in Cuba is not plentiful and with an influx of new tourists, it will become even more scarce. Many ameneties that Americans consider standard fare such as bottled beer, fruit, french fries, in room coffee makers, internet etc are scarce at even at the best Cuban resorts. Even getting an extra roll of toilet paper can be a hard to do at times. Restaurants are small, taxis and rental cars are hard to find as well. The airports would not be able to handle the amount of flights coming and going from the U.S.. Cuban tourism may not be able to meet the demands of the American Tourist.
Many tourism industry experts feel that by opening Cuba to American tourism, a huge strain would be put on this small country. Cuba at this time is not massively overhauling its hotels and other hotspots at the prospect of millions of new visitors. Instead as tourism increases, the tourism infrastructure is following along behind.
If the ban is lifted, it will be very interesting to see the changes in Cuba. If millions of Americans flock to Cuba for vacations, there will be a definate impact on the people and resources of the country. If Americans are allowed to go to Cuba, American influence will follow as well. Which can be both good and bad.
photo of Havana http://www.theodora.com/wfb/photos/cuba/cuba_photos_3.html