AirBnB offered free Cuba stays

Posted: 30-Jul-15 10:25

AirBnB is offering a special treat for its customers who are heading to Cuba. To celebrate the re-opening of the Cuban and US embassies and the relaxing of travel restrictions between the two countries, Air BnB is offering free stays.

AirBnB offered free Cuba stays

AirBnB picked up the tab for lucky travellers to Cuba, as the lodging rental firm celebrated the loosening of travel restrictions from the US to the island.

After being closed since 1961, the US Embassy has recently re-opened in Cuba. Americans are now permitted to travel to Cuba for several accepted reasons – including educational exchanges, volunteering and family visits. Purely touristic visits are not allowed yet, but there are plenty of ways that visitors can enter and experience the country within the 12 acceptable categories.

Excited about the new travel opportunities for Cuba, AirBnb have been offering free stays in the Caribbean country. The lodging rental company is picking up the tab for its customers who will stayed in listings in Cuba. The surprise promotion was announced on Twitter and it applied to those who booked their trip before July 20, as long as part of the itinerary included July 19 to July 26. AirBnB covered the entire stay of travellers who ventured to Cuba during this time, in the form of a refund.

AirBnB started offering Cuba in April and now they have more than 2,000 Cuba properties listed. Nearly 40% of these are in the capital city of Havana. The rest of the accommodations are located in Cienfuegros, Santa Clara and Matanzas. According to AirBnB search data, Cuba has become one of the most searched for destinations in Latin America, more than Rio de Janeiro, Mexico City and Buenos Aires. The network of holiday rental listings on AirBnb is mostly made up of "casa particulares" which are private lodgings that are run by local micro-entrepreneurs.

Many other travel companies are taking advantage of the increased interest in travel to Cuba. For example, Carnival Cruise Lines recently announced that it is looking to establish cruises to Cuba. These cruises will allow approximately 37,000 travellers per year to volunteer or be immersed in cultural and educational exchanges in local Cuban communities. Also, JetBlue is offering weekly charter flights from New York City to Havana.

Although this AirBnB promotion is over now, keep your eyes open for many other deals in the future as holiday companies are likely to offer great discounts and special fares in order to entice visitors from the USA to this previously forbidden country.


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