Earlier this week, PAX published unofficial information that suggested that travellers would be required to present a negative COVID-19 test result to enter Cuba starting as soon as January 1, 2020.
This new policy, however, is now being confirmed by several reliable sources.
PAX has still not obtained corroboration on this new requirement from the Tourism section of the Consulate General of Cuba .
The Cuba page on Global Affairs Canada still makes no mention of it either.
The Quai d'Orsay confirms
However, in other countries, equivalent sources do mention the new directive. The Quai d'Orsay - the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs - for example, now displays the following notice:
“From January 1, 2021, the negative result of a PCR test carried out less than 72 hours before arrival in Cuba and carried out by a certified laboratory in the country of origin must be presented by any traveler wishing to enter Cuban territory."
On the Minex website
This information is also, since yesterday (December 23), on the site of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba ( Minrex ), on the page of the Embassy of Cuba in France.
"We inform all customers of the Consulate General of Cuba in France that due to the international epidemiological situation linked to COVID-19, from January 1, 2021, all travelers from abroad are forced to present a result of TR-PCR test for the detection of SARS Cov-2, carried out by an approved laboratory in the country of origin within 72 hours before their arrival in Cuba, and this without prejudice to the hygienic and sanitary measures already in place at the borders Cuban. "
First the Directorio Cubano
Remember that it was the Directorio Cubano news website that first mentioned the information in a first report (in Spanish).
Recognizing that several of its readers doubted information that had not been confirmed by an official Cuban source, the newspaper returned to the subject in a second article to demonstrate that it was not a "fake news" (in English in the text).
In this second article, Directorio Cubano also tries to answer a question asked, he says, by several of his readers: what happens to the PCR test that must be carried out at the airport when the passenger arrives in Cuba .
According to Directorio Cubano , the answer to this question can be found at the very end of the Minrex note:
“… And this without prejudice to the hygienic and sanitary measures already in place at the Cuban borders. "
In other words, all previous measures continue to apply, interprets Directorio Cubano .
Among the dissenting voices, we note that of a Canadian who points out that many of her fellow citizens will have to cancel their January 3 flight.
“It will be IMPOSSIBLE for them to take the test and receive the results if they have to respect the 72 hours since the clinics will be closed on December 31 and January 1. And for those who can take a test on January 2 (if possible), the time frame for the result is at least 48 hours, but usually 72 hours. I sincerely hope that the Cuban government will be able to understand the situation and make an "exception". Otherwise, the planes will probably be empty ... "
His concerns tie in with those another annoyed adviser, who passed the following onto PAX .
“If it's true, that's sh*t for passengers who are departing soon. January 1 is like tomorrow. Those who leave on January 2, 3 or 4 .... good luck!"
Don't miss a single travel story: subscribe to PAX today