International Port Corp receives licences to operate direct U.S passenger ferry service to Cuba

Posted: 20-May-15 10:03

International Port Corp has been given the green light to operate direct ferry services between Florida and Cuba. The company received U.S licences from the US Treasury Department and the US Commerce Department for the new passenger service after receiving security clearance for vessels operating to the Caribbean island through its container shipping division in 2012.

International Port Corp receives licences to operate direct U.S passenger ferry service to Cuba

International Port Corp (IPC) has received the go ahead to operate a direct passenger ferry service between the United States and Cuba.

IPC has been given licences U.S from the US Treasury Department and the US Commerce Department to operate a new service between Florida and Cuba.

The company made history in 2012 when it directly sailed the first vessel in more than 50 years between Miami and Havana through its container shipping division.

IPC is set to make history again by becoming the first company to offer regular passenger ferry services to Cuba, and arrangements are underway with the Cuban authorities to put procedures in place.

In December 2014, President Obama announced that Cuba and the United States would resume relations following an embargo that has lasted more than five decades.

Travel restrictions on travel to Cuba for American residents have been relaxed over recent years, and though general tourism has not yet been approved as a reason to visit the country, Americans can visit for educational, religious, academic and cultural and family purposes across 12 categories, without having to obtain a licence.

Earlier this year, the Cuban Tourism Ministry announced that foreign visitor arrivals to Cuba in the first quarter of this year increased by 14 per cent in comparison to the same period last year, with more than one million travellers visiting the island.

The majority of travellers originated from Canada, Germany, France, the UK, and Italy, but American tourist numbers also increased due to the recent relaxed travel restrictions.

Cuba is a island nation located in the Caribbean Sea, east of Mexico and south of the United States. The communist country is rich in political history and boasts some of the world's most breathtaking natural landscapes, such as white sand beaches, turquoise lagoons, virgin cays, and the world's second largest barrier reef.


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