Here are the 10 things not to do in Cuba if you are traveling there. While diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba have thawed in the last year and leisurely travel is much easier for Americans now, there are some things you should educate yourself on if in fact you are planning a trip to the island nation. We have already talked about traveling to Cuba and what to do once you are there, but it is equally important to know what not to do.
10 Things Not to Do in Cuba
There are a handful of cultural differences between the U.S. and Cuba that can make your trip tense and awkward. Spitting and blowing your nose in public are considered rude in Cuba.
Don’t Badmouth Castro
While the communist hold in Cuba seems to be waning every day, Fidel Castro is engrained in the history of the nation and is still seen as a hero in the civilian’s eyes. Just like it is not a good idea to talk politics at the dinner table in America, it would be best to avoid the subject in Cuba as well.
Don’t Forget to Keep Some Pesos With You
Although the American dollar is accepted in Cuba, there are certain things that you can only pay for in Pesos such as the airport departure tax. This tax may not apply to your airline but it is always a good idea to keep some Pesos with you no matter what.
Don’t Fall for Local Tricks
The Cuban economy is not the most stable so its locals often try to trick tourists into giving them money. They tell sob-stories or unsolicited guide services and giving into one of them may be enough to make you a mark for all of them.
Yes the Cuban economy is not that great but the people still have dignity. It is considered rude to over-tip and makes the locals feel like you are just another fat cat American throwing money around even if you have the best intentions.
Don’t Call Attention to Yourself
Wearing gaudy jewelry, being excessively loud and spending lots of money in a very public way are to be avoided in Cuba where engaging in such acts will only make you a target for thieves and scammers.
Don’t Take Pictures of the Police or Military
This is actually a crime in Cuba and you may be arrested as a spy if you take pictures of armed guards, police, military personnel or even airport security.
Don’t Stay at A Resort
This is really more of a preference but why not experience the real Cuba as opposed to one that is sheltered and made to be as much like The States as possible.
Don’t Drink the Water
Montezuma’s revenge is a real thing even in Cuba and you can get very sick if you drink tap water. Stick with bottled water on your visit instead.
Don’t Bring Traveler’s Checks
Traveler’s checks as well as some credit cards issued by American banks are not accepted in Cuba.
What to Expect in Cuba
While all this sounds like a lot you must avoid don’t for a minute think that you can’t still have a great time in Cuba. bYou can feel very safe in Cuba because the crime rate is very low and as long as you are not a complete idiot with your money, you will never encounter a street-hood or run into a bad situation.
Cuba has much to offer in culture with their numerous museums and architecture, great food, awesome Jazz and music clubs and of course, fine Cuban cigars so take this list of 10 things not to do in Cuba not as a guide of restrictions but as a way to successfully navigate the country and to find the many things there are to be enjoyed there.